USS Mount Whitney Visits Stockholm

July 10, 2019 – The U.S. 6th Fleet Blue Ridge-class command and control ship USS Mount Whitney (LCC 20) arrived in Stockholm, Sweden for a scheduled port visit July 7. The visit serves to demonstrate an enduring partnership with Sweden and a mutual commitment to regional security and stability. “Our longstanding partnership with Sweden is built on shared values, common interests, and vision. We learn a great deal from the highly professional operators in the Swedish Navy. Their remarkable knowledge of the Baltic Sea is invaluable,” said Capt. Cassidy Norman,…

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Naval Oceanography has Small Footprint, Big Impact at BALTOPS

June 24, 2019 – With more than 18 nations, 50 surface ships, 36 aircraft, two submarines and 8,600 personnel involved in the 47th annual Baltic Operations (BALTOPS), the people of Naval Oceanography are easily overshadowed but their work fortifies the entire exercise. “Before any ship, submarine or aircraft enters or effectively maneuvers in the Baltic Sea and surrounding region, it must have a deep understanding of the environment,” said Rear Adm. John Okon, commander, Naval Meteorology and Oceanography Command (NMOC). “Everything we do in the Navy and the Joint Force…

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BALTOPS 2019 Wraps Up in Kiel

June 21, 2019 – The 47th annual Baltic Operations (BALTOPS) 2019 came to a close June 21 as ships and crewmembers from 18 nations returned to Kiel, Germany. BALTOPS is a joint, multinational maritime-focused exercise that includes air, maritime, and ground assets and provides a unique training opportunity designed to foster and sustain cooperative relationships that are critical to ensuring the safety of sea-lanes and security of the Baltic region. This year’s BALTOPS was led by U.S. 2nd Fleet (C2F), commanded by Vice Adm. Andrew Lewis, on behalf of Naval…

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BALTOPS 2019 Marks Milestone for ESG-2’s Re-designed MOC

June 19, 2019 – Commander, Expeditionary Strike Group (ESG) TWO Rear Adm. Brad Skillman and staff finished strong at the conclusion of exercise Baltic Operations (BALTOPS) 2019. Unique for this exercise is Skillman’s command of a 21-ship multinational Amphibious Task Force Forward Deployed, assisted by staff operating in the newly modernized Maritime Operations Center (MOC) at ESG-2 headquarters in Norfolk, Virginia. “We recently did the first renovation of ESG-2 headquarters in 29 years for the purpose of being able to operate Forward Deployed and stay fully operationally connected to the…

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USS Fort McHenry Conducts Amphibious Operations in the Baltic Sea

June 14, 2019 – USS Fort McHenry (LSD 43) participated in an amphibious landing on the Estonian coast while participating in exercise Baltic Operations (BALTOPS) 2019, June 12. U.S. Marines assigned to the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) and Spanish Marines assigned to 2nd Batallon De Desembarco, Brigada De Infanteria De Marina (2nd Landing Battalion, Marine Infantry Brigade) disembarked Fort McHenry on a landing craft utility (LCU) and landed on the shores of Estonia. “The ability to successfully conduct operations such as an amphibious landing is a testimony to the…

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Russian Response to BALTOPS

June 15, 2019 (Google Translation) – In order to promptly respond to possible emergencies and threats to navigational safety of civilian shipping in the Baltic Sea area, the forces and facilities of the Baltic Fleet carry out a set of measures to control the joint exercises of the combined naval forces of NATO Baltops-2019. In the southern part of the Baltic Sea, participants in the NATO naval exercises are working on practical episodes related to the radio suppression of radar and radio navigation systems. In order to detect threats to…

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Mine Warfare Takes Center Stage in BALTOPS 2019

June 11, 2019 – Vice Adm. Andrew “Woody” Lewis, Commander, U.S. Second Fleet, visited with forces from exercise Baltic Operations (BALTOPS) Mine Warfare Task Group during the first day of operations during the exercise June 9. Lewis, the commander of BALTOPS 2019, spoke of the relevance of working with partner nations in the areas of mine warfare during BALTOPS, as he spoke with task unit leaders from the Mine Warfare Task Group. “Don’t underestimate the importance of what each of you are doing as part of this exercise,” Lewis said.…

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Russia Holds Their Own BALTOPS

June 10, 2019 (TASS) – Several naval groups comprising corvettes, small missile ships and an anti-submarine warfare vessel have sailed to practice ranges in the Baltic Sea for naval drills, the Baltic Fleet’s press office reported on Monday. “As part of planned drills, the naval hunter-killer and surface action groups comprising the corvettes Boiky and Stoiky, the small missile ships Serpukhov, Zelyony Dol, Liven and Passat and the anti-submarine warfare ship Aleksin will hold a set of drills,” the press office said in a statement. The naval ships will practice…

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NATO Navies Test Readiness in Baltic Sea

June 8, 2019 – Around 8,600 U.S. and European troops from 18 nations are taking part in the annual BALTOPS naval exercise that starts on Sunday (9 June) in Germany’s Baltic Sea port of Kiel. The 47th BALTOPS exercise involves maritime, air and ground forces with about 50 ships and submarines and 40 aircraft and will run through 21 June. The training includes finding and destroying sea mines and submarines, the use of air defence and landing troops onshore as well as defence against attack from enemy navy vessels. “The…

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BALTOPS 2019 Begins In Germany

June 7, 2019 – Maritime forces from 18 nations commenced the in-port operations for the 47th annual multinational exercise Baltic Operations (BALTOPS) in the Baltic Sea, June 9-21. BALTOPS is the premier annual maritime-focused exercise in the Baltic region and one of the largest exercises in northern Europe, enhancing flexibility and interoperability among allied and partner nations. Vice Adm. Andrew Lewis, commander of the U.S. 2nd Fleet, will lead the exercise on behalf of Naval Forces Europe. “No one nation can face today’s challenges alone, we are much stronger together,”…

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BALTOPS 2018 Daily Update June 4

The President of Lithuania, Dalia Grybauskaitė, observed a naval demonstration from the Blue Ridge-class command and control ship USS Mount Whitney (LCC 20). Two Polish Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon aircraft performed a fly-by while Grybauskaitė was aboard. Grybauskaitė, Vice. Adm. Lisa M. Franchetti, commander, U.S. 6th Fleet and commander, Naval Striking and Support Forces NATO (STRIKFORNATO); and Rear Adm. Guy Robinson, OBE, Royal Navy, deputy commander, STRIKFORNATO, traveled to the Harpers Ferry-class dock landing ship USS Oak Hill (LSD 51) to meet with distinguished visitors from some of the…

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Finnish Navy 2018 Training Cruise Begins April 29

Six-week sailing will be directed to the Baltic Sea, the North Sea, the Atlantic and the Mediterranean this year. The training vessel is operated by Miinalaiva Uusimaa. Each year, the Navy School of Education has trained seafarers, nurses, and mining personnel and conscripts working as a training vessel. There are about twenty different classes on board and training is given around the clock every day of the week. On the last leg of the journey, the vessel participates in the international BALTOPS 2018 exercise, which begins at the port stage…

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