USS George Washington (CVN 73) (GW) and embarked Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 17 departed Naval Station Norfolk April 4 as part of U.S. Southern Command’s (SOUTHCOM) “Partnership of the Americas” deployment.
The two-month underway period marks GW’s first deployment since leaving the Northrop Grumman Newport News Shipyard
“Partnership of the Americas is designed to foster goodwill among partner nations through communications, operations and training,” said Vice Adm. Mark Fitzgerald, commander, U.S. 2nd Fleet. “Furthermore, this exercise allows for participating units to sharpen their skills to be better trained and prepared to respond to future contingencies or operations.”
More than 6,500 Sailors from the GW Carrier Strike Group (GWCSG) ships will deploy to the Caribbean Sea to enhance regional maritime security and strengthen ties through operations and exercises with Caribbean and Latin American partner nations.
It will also provide the opportunity for U.S. and other forces to operate in a multinational environment, refine coordination, and improve interoperability. Assigned units will focus on being ready to deal with threats such as narco-terrorism and illicit trafficking, and improving training levels in a variety of mission areas.
"The Partnership of America's operations is an opportunity for first rate training and a chance to improve strike group readiness," said Rear Adm. Joseph F. Kilkenny, commander, George Washington Carrier Strike Group. "This endeavor will also strengthen our partnership with our allies who stand with us in promoting maritime security."
USS Stout (DDG 55) and USS Monterey (CG 61) join GW in the GWCSG April 4. USS Underwood (FFG 36), homeported in Mayport, Fla., is already at sea performing other taskings, and will join the GW CSG in the Caribbean Sea at a later date.
Source: HK Law