Military


Baltic Operations (BALTOPS)

The BALTOPS (short for Baltic Operations) exercise is the largest international exercise organized in the Baltic. BALTOPS is a U.S. invitational multinational maritime exercise conducted in the Baltic region each year. BALTOPS provides a basis for promoting mutual understanding and maritime platform interoperability between U.S. Navy, NATO, and non-NATO participants through a series of multilateral training exercises in air warfare, shallow water undersea warfare, electronic warfare, air control, air defense, surface warfare, communications, fast patrol boat operations, seamanship, and mine warfare.

In the years the United States has been sponsoring BALTOPS, the exercise has developed into a unique experience for many Sailors and their foreign counterparts. The focus of the surface and air exercises was not on war-fighting tactics, but on improving the nations' cooperative abilities. Scenarios tested the collective force's ability to respond to maritime disasters, conduct coastal surveillance, provide customs enforcement and a variety of other maritime operations.

The annual Baltic Operations (BALTOPS) exercises have shown that the people who grow up on these waters know the sea well even if they haven't tamed it. The U.S. invitational exercises regularly attract most of the Baltic nations as well as Russia, Germany, Poland and the United Kingdom. One of the favorite tasks of the first week's Phase I exercises was "cross-decking," the time-honored tradition of ships swapping sailors for a period of time so they can become familiar with other ships' operations.

While BALTOPS is a U.S. led, multinational invitational exercise, Germany and Denmark acted as the host nation during alternate years (Germany hosting even-numbered years and Denmark hosting odd-numbered years.) The host nation will normally be asked to host the exercise Main Planning Conference (MPC). The host provides a central receiving area for media representatives, distinguished visitors, and other observers involved in the public affairs plan. This area will provide a place to brief official visitors on BALTOPS mission, exercise participants and exercise schedule prior to being transported to the ship(s) they are designated to embark.

BALTOPS is normally conducted in two phases. The Partnership for Peace (PfP) phase is designed to enhance interoperability of NATO and non-NATO countries in conducting multinational maritime operations. These exercises will focus primarily on communications, shiphandling, search and rescue (SAR), and non-traditional military missions, such as Maritime Sanctions Enforcement, which nations may participate under United Nations auspices. The NATO maritime exercise phase is designed to enhance interoperability of NATO maritime forces through the conduct of military operations in a wartime scenario. Scenarios will stress coordinated maritime operations in Undersea Warfare (USW), Air Defense (AD), Surface Warfare (SUW), and Electronic Warfare (EW).

The large number of military and civilian vessels in the Baltic OPAREAS will challenge all units to maintain safety and smart seamanship. Airspace is similarly constrained because of the large number of commercial air routes and narrow corridors of international airspace. All unit commanders must be thoroughly familiar with the guidance in the OPORD and its references.

The United States Navy teamed up with over 40 ships, two submarines and numerous aircraft from 12 Baltic nations, to participate in BALTOPS 95. BALTOPS is a joint naval maritime exercise, allowing countries to work together, conductiong joint operations in order to better understand each other's capabilities. Ships from the United States, Denmark, Sweden, Germany, Finland, Netherlands and Norway rendezvoused with ships from Russia, Latvia, Estonia, Poland, Lithuania and headed for the Baltic Sea. For the first time, part of the BALTOPS exercise was conducted under the command of former Warsaw Pact Forces. There were other firsts as well; it was the first maritime exercise involving ships from all Baltic nations, the first time that non-NATO aircart was involved in BALTOPS and the first time a former Warsaw Pact submarine participated in a BALTOPS exercise.

As the political landscape changes in the region, participation grows. The 13 nations who participated in 1997's two-part exercise brought a total of 50 ships and conducted more than 250 training events using assets from smaller nations, like Estonia, alongside much larger, more experienced forces. Recent history brought the fall of the Soviet Union and a new era of growth for the Baltic nations. This set the stage for an even greater role for the Navy during BALTOPS '97.

The commander in chief, U.S. Naval Forces Europe, announced on 07 June 1997 that 12 European nations and the United States would participate in the 25th annual U.S. invitational maritime exercise -- U.S. Baltic Operations 1997 (BALTOPS 97). It included more than 50 ships, aircraft, submarines and observers from NATO member and Partnership for Peace countries to include: Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Russia, Sweden, United Kingdom and the United States. The exercise took place in the Baltic Sea June 16 to 27. Rear Adm. James B. Hinkle, U.S. Navy, commander, Cruiser Destroyer Group Eight, based in Norfolk, Va., commanded the exercise from his flagship, the U.S. guided missile cruiser USS Anzio (CG 68).

BALTOPS 97 was conducted "in the spirit of" NATO's Partnership for Peace initiative and will include two at-sea phases. Phase one, the Partnership for Peace phase, began June 16 in Gdynia, Poland and concluded June 20 when BALTOPS ships visit Kiel, Germany. This phase of BALTOPS 97 is designed to build understanding among nations of the Baltic region by exercising together to improve the ability of nations to respond to maritime disasters and to conduct maritime search and rescue, coastal surveillance, customs enforcement and other operations. Post phase I review and liberty was conducted from June 21 to 22. During phase two, June 23 to 27, participating NATO nations conducted a variety of maritime exercises designed to enhance multilateral training in air warfare, shallow water operations, air defense, seamanship and mine warfare. BALTOPS 97 also exercised participants in ship-to-ship and ship-to-shore communications with U.S. Navy/NATO shore facilities.

BALTOPS 97 was designed to integrate naval and air assets for combat operations in the Baltic Sea. It's the battle of Jutland -- to keep the Russian navy blocked in the Baltic Sea. The primary targets were Aegis-class ships. They had many missiles to use in their defense plus radar-guided gatling guns. These surface-to-air weapons send out hundreds of shells in seconds, for close-in targets. Like Central Enterprise, BALTOPS tested command and control between several countries coming together to defend against or strike at targets. It included naval, naval air and air forces around the Baltic Sea region.

For the second consecutive year, a U.S. Coast Guard cutter participated in the exercise. The medium endurance cutter, USCG Legare (WMEC 912), conducted coastal patrol training for participating nations.

Baltic Operations (BALTOPS) 98 was a U.S. invitational multinational maritime exercise conducted in the Baltic Region. BALTOPS provides a basis for promoting mutual understanding and maritime platform interoperability between U.S. Navy, NATO, and non-NATO participants through a series of multilateral training exercises in air warfare, shallow water undersea warfare, electronic warfare, air defense, surface warfare, communications, fast patrol boat operations, seamanship, and mine warfare. The United States and 12 European nations participated in the 26th annual maritime exercise U.S. Baltic Operations (BALTOPS) '98. The exercise included 52 ships, submarines, and aircraft from European allies and Partnership for Peace (PfP) nations to include: Germany, France, United Kingdom, Norway, The Netherlands, Finland, Latvia, Sweden, Poland, Denmark, Estonia, Lithuania, and the United States. The exercise took place in the Western Baltic Sea, June 8-19, 1998. BALTOPS '98 was conducted in two at-sea phases. Phase one, the partnership phase conducted "in the spirit of" the PfP initiative, was June 8-12. This BALTOPS' phase was intended to improve interoperability with allies and partnership nations by conducting at-sea exercises in gunnery, at-sea replenishment, undersea warfare, radar tracking, mine countermeasure, seamanship, and search and rescue. Phase two, conducted June 15-19, exercised participating NATO naval forces in a variety of maritime operations.

From the opening exercises to the climactic simulated sea battle, the 26th annual Baltic Operations (BALTOPS) Naval Exercise, which concluded June 20 in Kiel, Germany, was the most successful ever. There was a remarkable increase in communication and language skills between the various fleet units, as compared to previous years. There were many significant achievements accomplished during the exercise. Despite differences in equipment, the units of the exercise fleet nevertheless swiftly established successful voice and data communications with each other. The fleet was broken into several international "task units," all of which reported tremendous success in swiftly bridging language barriers and achieving flotilla cohesiveness. Ships within the various task units daily exchanged personnel with each other, giving Sailors from many nations a chance to meet face-to-face and compare professional notes with their counterparts in other navies. The task unit exercises included professional skills, such as gunnery, mine countermeasures, AAW, small unit tactics and ASW. Out of all the exercises scheduled during BALTOPS, only a small handful had to be canceled because of poor weather. Exercise directors used the Internet to distribute exercise Operation Orders to all participants. At the post-exercise briefing, exercise commander Copeland said the long-running series of exercises taught all participants more than shiphandling and gunnery.

Baltic Operations (BALTOPS) 99 was a U.S. invitational multinational maritime exercise conducted in the Baltic Region from 2-14 Jun 99. BALTOPS provides a basis for promoting mutual understanding and maritime platform interoperability between U.S. Navy, NATO, and non-NATO participants through a series of multilateral training exercises in air warfare, shallow water undersea warfare, electronic warfare, air defense, surface warfare, communications, fast patrol boat operations, seamanship, and mine warfare. The host of BALTOPS '99 is the Royal Danish Navy. BALTOPS '99 started on Wednesday, 2nd of June in ARHUS, Denmark. The sea phase of exercise started on Sunday, 6th of June and is conducted in Danish Straits and South Baltic region. On Friday, 11th of June, the forces participating in US BALTOPS '99 enter Polish harbour in GDYNIA. 47 warships of 11 nations stayed in naval and merchant harbour in GDYNIA till Monday, 14th of June. The Polish ship group was the biggest participant in Baltic Operation '99.

Poland was the co-host of Baltops 2001. The 29th annual maritime exercise Baltic Operations (BALTOPS) 2001 took place in the Baltic Sea from 1-18 June 2001. The United States and 13 other nations participated in this year's exercise. BALTOPS 2001 is intended to improve interoperability with Baltic Sea Nations and Partnership for Peace (PfP) countries by conducting a peace support operation at sea including exercises in Gunnery, replenishment-at-sea, undersea warfare, radar tracking, mine countermeasures, seamanship, search and rescue, and maritime interdiction operations.

In 2001 Russia resumed its participation in the Baltops naval exercise of NATO and for the first time in the history of these manoeuvres will take part in all the stages of them. In 1993-1997 when, upon the decision of the NATO command, Russian warships which were sent to the Baltops exercise participated only in the first stage of these manoeuvres within the framework of the Partnership for Peace program. And in 2001 the Bespokoiny destroyer of the Baltic Fleet participated also in the second stage of the exercise, which was earlier considered to be exclusively a NATO one.

The emphasis of this exercise is on regional stability, regional understanding and cooperation among the participating forces. According to Rear Adm. John W. Townes, the officer conducting the exercise, this is an opportunity for every nation involved to better understand, learn and develop effective relationships with each other. BALTOPS 2001 demonstrates maritime member solidarity and enhances mutual understanding and coordination of maritime operations. The emphasis of this exercise is on regional stability, mutual understanding and cooperation among the participating forces. BALTOPS 2001 serves as an excellent cooperative training opportunity for the participating navies. It is open and transparent - all the countries in the region are invited to participate in the exercise. The Polish Navy initiated the Polish Forces's participation in the NATO exercises while participating in the BALTOPS 93 as a Partnership for Peace country.

Admiral BALTOPS is a US invitational, multinational maritime exercise conducted in the Baltic Region. U.S. Naval Forces Europe is in charge of the exercise, and Sweden is this year's co-host. For the first time, full integration between NATO and countries is planned. BALTOPS included 50 ships, 3 submarines, and 20 aircraft from Baltic Sea nations and PfP countries.

Over 750 Sailors aboard two Norfolk based U.S. Navy guided-missile cruisers departed Monday, 21 May to participate in the 29th annual maritime exercise Baltic Operations (BALTOPS) 2001. USS Anzio (CG 68) and USS Cape St. George (CG 71) transited the Atlantic Ocean heading for the Baltic Sea in Northern Europe. Both ships were scheduled for port visits that include stops in Poland and Germany.

More than 40 ships from 14 different countries are berthed in Gdynia harbor and at the Naval Base. The international air forces will operate out of the Polish Navy Air Base in Gdynia Babie Doly. The harbor phase of the exercise began on Friday, June 1. During the in-port phase of the exercise, the ships' crews will prepare for the practical maneuvers at sea. During their free time, the sailors will tour the Tricity and compete in soccer, volleyball and basketball.

On Tuesday, 5 June, over 40 ships from 14 countries left the port in Gdynia, and started the at-sea phase of the exercise BALTOPS 2001. While at sea the ships practiced typical peace operations, embargos, and a scenario adhering to a potential real world crisis situation. The ships conducted replenishment-at-sea, anti-submarine, anti-surface and anti-air warfare, as well as mine countermeasure, search and rescue, damage control and gunnery training. After ten days at sea the ships entered the port in Kiel, Germany.


BALTOPS 2001
SHIPS MOORING PLAN

No

Country

Hull No

Ships Name

Mooring

1

UK

M-108

HMS GRIMSBY

Naval Base

2

UK

F-86

HMS CAMPBELTOWN

Merchant Harbor
Polish Quay

3

DA

F-360

HDMS HVIDBJOERNEN

Naval Base

4

DA

P-555

HDMS GRIBBEN

Naval Base

5

DA

P-558

HDMS LOMMEN

Naval Base

6

DA

P-559

HDMS STOEREN

Naval Base

7

DA

F-354

HDMS NIELS JUEL

Naval Base

8

DA

F-356

HDMS PETER TORDENSKIOLD

Naval Base

9

DA

S-321

HDMS NORDKAPEREN

Naval Base

10

SW

 

HSWMS UPPLAND (SSK)

Naval Base

11

RU

620

RNS BESPOKOYNYY

Merchant Harbor
Polish Quay

12

SW

A-264

HSWMS TROSSÖ

Naval Base

13

SW

R-131

HSWMS NYNÄSHAMN

Naval Base

14

SW

R-132

HSWMS NORRKÖPING

Naval Base

15

SW

R-138

HSWMS PITEÅ

Naval Base

16

GE

S-191

FGS U-12

Naval Base

17

LI

F-12

LNS AUKSTAITIS

Naval Base

18

LI

F-11

LNS ZEMAITIS

Naval Base

19

UK

A-387

RFA FORT VICTORIA

Merchant Harbor
Polish Quay

20

GE

F-211

FGS KOELN

Naval Base

21

GE

P-6155

FGS ALK

Naval Base

22

GE

P-6148

FGS LOEWE

Naval Base

23

GE

P-6150

FGS PANTHER

Naval Base

24

GE

P-6159

FGS REIHER

Naval Base

25

FR

F-788

FS LE BIHAN

Naval Base

26

USA

CG 71

USS CAPE ST. GEORGE

Merchant Harbor
French Quay

27

ES

A-230

ENS ADMIRAL PITKA

Naval Base

28

ES

M-310

ENS WAMBOLA

Naval Base

29

ES

M-414

ENS KALEV

Naval Base

30

GE

A-515

FGS MAIN

Naval Base

31

USA

CG 68

USS ANZIO

Merchant Harbor
Francuskie

32

LA

P-04

LVNS BULTA

Naval Base

33

LA

M-01

LVNS VIESTRUS

Naval Base

34

FIN

05

FNS UUSIMAA

Naval Base

35

FIN

72

FNS PORVOO

Naval Base

36

PL

240

ORP KASZUB

Naval Base

37

PL

434

ORP GORNIK

Naval Base

38

PL

437

ORP ROLNIK

Naval Base

39

PL

632

ORP BUKOWO

Naval Base

40

PL

634

ORP JAMNO

Naval Base

41

PL

Z-1

ORP BALTYK

Naval Base

42

PL

292

ORP WILK

Naval Base



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