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USS Philippine Sea's Deployment Enhances Security, Stability in Middle East Region

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS050816-02
Release Date: 8/16/2005 10:42:00 AM

By Chief Journalist Tom Jones, Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command Public Affairs

MANAMA, Bahrain (NNS) -- USS Philippine Sea (CG 58), the Mayport, Fla.-based guided-missile cruiser, has had a direct impact on the security and stability of the Middle East since arriving in the region in May as part of the U.S. Navy’s new operational construct, the Fleet Response Plan (FRP), according to Capt. Gene Moran, the ship’s commanding officer.

“Philippine Sea has been an active member of the coalition task force, participating in a variety of [maritime security operations] missions, all of which serve the purpose of promoting stability,” said Moran. “By pressurizing the maritime environment, international terrorist organizations are eventually detected, and their use of the maritime environment is deterred or denied.”

Philippine Sea, along with USS Hawes (FFG 53) and USS Gunston Hall (LSD 44), deployed in May in support of maritime security operations (MSO). The deployment is the latest implementation of FRP, which is about new ways of operating, training, manning, and maintaining the fleet, resulting in increased readiness and the ability to provide significant combat power when and where it’s needed.

“No challenge has been too big for Philippine Sea or any of the coalition task force ships,” said Moran. “We are each committed to actively pressurizing the maritime environment with all means available. The ships are well trained and fully prepared for any number of contingencies that may emerge in conducting MSO.”

Philippine Sea is working with coalition allies to detect, disrupt, and deny international terrorist organizations the use of the maritime environment as a venue for attack or to transport personnel, weapons or other material. It is also working to protect sea-based infrastructure and build regional security and long-term stability.

“Philippine Sea, along with Hawes, Gunston Hall and ships of the coalition task force, has conducted myriad operations throughout the region, from Visit, Board, Search and Seizure, to exercises with our allies and [Gulf Cooperative Council] partners, to presence operations,” said Moran. “Each of the surge ships has been fully engaged in [MSO], the fundamental purpose of which is to promote peace and stability in the region.”

Coalition maritime forces operate throughout the 2.5 million square miles of international waters in the Persian Gulf, Gulf of Oman, Gulf of Aden, the Red Sea and parts of the Indian Ocean.

Vice Adm. David Nichols, commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command and the Combined Forces Maritime Component Command, noted in an earlier interview that forces like Philippine Sea provide key capabilities in this region’s maritime environment.

“The coalition brings a tactical- and operational-level skill set that serve us very well in the coalition environment, and there is true synergistic effect there,” Nichols said. “The tighter [the terrorists] see the coalition partners working together, the more difficult it is going to be for them to do the things they want to do.”


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