DVIDS – News – Expeditionary rapid transport vessel supports bilateral exercise with Indonesia
JAVA SEA – The Spearhead Class Expeditionary Fast Transport of Military Sealift Command USNS Millinocket (T-EPF 3) participated in Cooperation and Afloat Training (CARAT) in Indonesia, Java Sea, 6 November.
The annual bilateral exercise encompassed the full spectrum of naval capabilities and features cooperative developments that highlight the ability of the U.S. and Indonesian navies to work together.
“With the constantly changing dynamics in the region, I think interoperability is very important to achieve our common goal which is peace and stability in the region,” said Captain Erwin F. Lao, Petty Officer of the USNS Millinocket.
âCareful planning and an open line of communication between the two countries allow us to share ideas, practices and procedures – not just during exercise, but whenever we come together to execute a successful mission. The chance to engage like this is beneficial for both of us in the long run, as we understand each other’s capabilities and how to maximize and increase them by working together.
During the at-sea phase of the exercise, US Navy assets worked with Indonesian Navy ships and planes, known as Tentera Nasional Indonesia – Angkatan Laut (TNI-AL). The littoral combatant USS Jackson (LCS 18), embarked an MH-60S Seahawk helicopter from Helicopter Combat Squadron 23 (HSC) and a P-8A Poseidon aircraft assigned to the Commander, Task Force ( CTF) 72.
The afloat portion of CARAT involved complex sea training, including divisional tactics designed to improve communication as ships navigate together in complex maneuvers. It was also a follow-up exercise aimed at increasing the capabilities of both navies to track and pursue targets through the coordinated deployment of surface vessels and maritime patrol aircraft. Other areas of interest included surface warfare; visitation, embarkation, search and seizure exercises; mobile diving and rescue training; a marksmanship exercise, maritime patrol operations; and exchanges between explosive ordnance disposal technicians.
Lao believes that these CARAT events provided his crew and Indonesian counterparts with the opportunity to improve interoperability, readiness and understanding. He adds that the 11-day exercise also strengthened the long-standing relationship between the two Marines.
âAs commander of USNS Millinocket since 2016, I have witnessed the tremendous benefits my crew have derived from our interactions with Indonesia and other allies and partners in the region,â said Lao.
âTeamwork is just one of the attributes that my crew has developed over the years through social and professional interaction with our allies and partners in the region. It also helps my crew to better understand and appreciate the different cultures of the region.
“It is a privilege to have this opportunity to train with our allies through a series of engagements like CARAT.”
The Military Sealift Command Far East ensures that approximately 50 ships in the Indo-Pacific region, including Millinocket, are manned, trained and equipped to deliver essential supplies, fuel, cargo and equipment to combatants, both at sea and on land.
As the largest forward deployed fleet of the US Navy, the 7th Fleet employs 50 to 70 ships and submarines in the Western Pacific and Indian Oceans. The U.S. 7th Fleet regularly operates and interacts with 35 maritime nations while conducting missions to preserve and protect a free and open Indo-Pacific region.
|Date posted:||14.14.2021 23:35|
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