June 20, 2020 – USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) and USS Nimitz (CVN 68) strike groups commenced dual carrier flight operations in the Philippine Sea, June 21.
The ships and aircraft assigned to both strike groups began coordinated operations in international waters demonstrating the United States’ unique capability to operate multiple carrier strike groups in close proximity.
While at sea, the strike groups will support air defense drills, sea surveillance, replenishments at sea, defensive air combat training, long range strikes, coordinated maneuvers and other exercises.
“This is a great opportunity for us to train together in a complex scenario,” said Rear Adm. Doug Verissimo, commander of Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 9. “By working together in this environment, we’re improving our tactical skills and readiness in the face of an increasingly pressurized region and COVID-19.”
As a Pacific nation and a Pacific leader, the United States has a national interest in maintaining security and prosperity, peaceful resolution of disputes, unimpeded lawful commerce, and adherence to freedom of navigation and overflight throughout the shared domains of the Indo-Pacific. For more than 75 years, the U.S. Navy has been a persistent and stabilizing presence conducting operations throughout the region on a daily basis.
“The United States Navy has long history of operating multiple carrier strike groups as a combined force in the Pacific,” said Rear Adm. James Kirk, commander of Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 11. “Our operations demonstrate the resilience and readiness of our naval force and are a powerful message of our commitment to regional security and stability as we protect the critically important rights, freedoms, and lawful uses of the sea for the benefit all nations.”
U.S. Navy aircraft carriers have conducted dual carrier strike group operations in the Western Pacific including the South China Sea, East China Sea and Philippine Sea for several years. These operations typically occur when strike groups deployed to the 7th Fleet area of operations from the West Coast of the United States are joined with the forward deployed carrier strike group from Japan.
“Working with Rear Adm. Kirk and Carrier Strike Group 11 during their deployment is a great opportunity for us to train on how we would operate multiple carrier strike groups in a contested environment,” said Verissimo. “U.S. aircraft carriers possess flexibility, endurance, firepower, maneuverability and capability unmatched in the history of warfare.”
CSG 11 consists of the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz (CVN 68), guided-missile cruiser USS Princeton (CG 59) and guided-missile destroyers of Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 9, which includes USS Sterett (DDG 104), USS Ralph Johnson (DDG 114) and Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 17.
CSG 9 consists of the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71), guided-missile cruiser USS Bunker Hill (CG 52) and guided-missile destroyers from Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 23, USS Russell (DDG 59), USS Rafaela Peralta (DDG 115), and Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 11.
Theodore Roosevelt departed San Diego for a scheduled Indo-Pacific deployment January 17 while Nimitz departed on June 8.