February 8, 2019 – USS Green Bay (LPD 20), with the embarked 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU), arrived in Sattahip, February 7, to participate in exercise Cobra Gold 2019.
Cobra Gold is the largest theater security cooperation exercise in the Indo-Pacific region and is designed to bringing together a robust multinational force to address shared goals and security commitments.
“It is really great to be back in Thailand and participating in Cobra Gold”, said Capt. Tom Shultz, Green Bay’s commanding officer. “The ship was last here in 2017, so we’re all happy to be back and look forward to building our capacity and interoperability with Thailand and other partners from the region. The crew is focused on the exercise and ready for the complex and realistic multinational and task force operations.”
During the visit, the Green Bay crew will participate in two volunteer service opportunities interacting with more than 600 Thailand youth and staff members.
“We’re incredibly grateful for the hospitality and welcome we’ve received in Thailand,” said Lt. Danny Cho, Green Bay’s command chaplain. “Our community service events are ways for our crew to express our thanks and continue building on the positive relations we’ve had with our host nation.”
The crew will also get the chance to participate in a variety of trips offered by Green Bay’s Morale, Welfare and Recreation (MWR) department.
“The goal of our MWR team is to give Sailors and Marines the opportunity to get the most out of their port visit and make memories that will last a lifetime,” said Ensign Michael Vassallo, Green Bay’s afloat recreation officer. “Many have not been to Thailand before and we want to make sure they experience the country’s rich culture and landscape.”
Cobra Gold 19, in its 38th iteration, will be held from Feb. 12-23, 2019 with up to 29 nations participating including Japan, Indonesia, Malaysia, Republic of Korea, and Singapore. The exercise emphasizes coordination on civic action, such as humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, seeking to expand regional cooperation and collaboration in these vital areas.
Green Bay, a San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock ship, was commissioned by the U.S. Navy in 2009. The ship is forward deployed to Sasebo, Japan as part of Commander, Amphibious Force 7th Fleet and is operating in the Indo-Pacific region to enhance interoperability with partners and serve as a ready-response force for any type of contingency.