U.S. and Japanese Ships Start Tactical Exercise Near Guam

By Lt. Courtney Keiser, Commander, Destroyer Squadron 15 Public Affairs

FLEET ACTIVITIES YOKOSUKA, Japan – Guam Exercise (GUAMEX), an annual bilateral training exercise between the U.S. Navy and Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF), began Jan. 20 off the coast of Guam.

160120-N-NT265-039 GUAM (Jan. 20, 2015) – Sailors assigned to the forward-deployed Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Mustin (DDG 89) man the rails while arriving in Guam. Mustin is on patrol in the 7th Fleet area of operations in support of security and stability in the Indo-Asia Pacific. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Christian Senyk/Released)

160120-N-NT265-039 GUAM (Jan. 20, 2015) – Sailors assigned to the forward-deployed Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Mustin (DDG 89) man the rails while arriving in Guam. Mustin is on patrol in the 7th Fleet area of operations in support of security and stability in the Indo-Asia Pacific. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Christian Senyk/Released)

Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 15 guided-missile destroyers, USS Mustin (DDG 89) and USS McCampbell (DDG 85), will practice tactical operations along with more than six ships from the JMSDF in a number of exercises including, an anti-air warfare exercise, anti-submarine warfare exercise and anti-surface warfare exercise.

Maritime assets from the U.S. Navy and JMDSF will include ships, MH-60R Sea Hawk helicopters embarked on Mustin and McCampbell, Maritime Patrol and Reconnaissance Aircraft (MPRA), EA-18G Growlers and a submarine.

“Our relationship with Japan is grounded in at-sea operations that we conduct with the JMSDF throughout the region,” said Cmdr. Ed Sundberg, commanding officer of McCampbell. “It is critical that we learn from each other, so we can continue to improve each country’s tactical expertise and response.”

160119-N-JU970-953 GUAM (Jan. 19, 2016) Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) Rear Adm. Hiroshi Ito, commander of Escort Flotilla Four, left, and U.S. Navy Commander Edward D. Sundberg, commanding officer of USS McCampbell, right, hold a plaque celebrating the partnership between both forces in preparation for the annual bilateral Guam Exercise (GUAMEX). McCampbell is on patrol in the 7th Fleet area of operation in support of security and stability in the Indo-Asia-Pacific. (U.S. Navy photo by Ensign Soon Kwon/Released)

160119-N-JU970-953 GUAM (Jan. 19, 2016) Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) Rear Adm. Hiroshi Ito, commander of Escort Flotilla Four, left, and U.S. Navy Commander Edward D. Sundberg, commanding officer of USS McCampbell, right, hold a plaque celebrating the partnership between both forces in preparation for the annual bilateral Guam Exercise (GUAMEX). McCampbell is on patrol in the 7th Fleet area of operation in support of security and stability in the Indo-Asia-Pacific. (U.S. Navy photo by Ensign Soon Kwon/Released)

Exercises like GUAMEX provide a training environment for enhancing mutual understanding of each country’s tactics, communication protocols, procedures and general cooperation. Bilateral operations strengthen U.S.-Japan interoperability and defense capabilities.

Mustin and McCampbell are forward-deployed to Yokosuka, Japan and are operating together as part of a planned patrol to promote peace and maritime security in the Indo-Asia-Pacific.

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