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Surface Warfare Winter 2017 Issue 53

This Issue:

Also Inside:

USS Zumwalt Commissioning And:


Integration on

USS America

Russell Egnor Navy Media Award Winner


Surface Warfare Magazine Staff

Commander, Naval Surface Forces

Vice Adm. Tom Rowden

Public Affairs Officer Cmdr. John Perkins

Man. Train. Equip.

Editorial Advisor Lt. Cmdr. Rebecca Haggard


Surface Warfare Magazine is published quarterly from appropriated funds by authority of the Chief of Naval Operations in accordance with NPPR P-35. The Secretary of the Navy has determined that this publication is necessary in the transaction of business required by law of the Department of the Navy. Use of funds for printing this publication has been approved by the Navy Publications and Printing Policy Committee. Reproductions are encouraged with proper citation. Controlled circulation. Surface Warfare (USPS 104-170) (ISSN 0145-1073) is published by the Department of the Navy, Director, Surface Warfare (OPNAV N861M), 2000 Navy Pentagon, Room 5B453 Washington, D.C. 20350. Periodicals postage paid at Washington, D.C., and additional mailing offices. Cover: Sailors aboard USS Carney (DDG 64) man the rails while pulling into port in Constanta, Romania Oct. 25, 2016. Photo by PO3 Weston Jones. 2


Surface Warfare Magazine is the professional magazine of the surface warfare community. Its purpose is to educate its readers on surface warfare missions and programs, with a particular focus on U.S. surface ships and commands. This journal will also draw upon the Surface Force’s rich historical legacy to instill a sense of pride and professionalism among community members and to enhance reader awareness of the increasing relevance of surface warfare for our nation’s defense. The opinions and assertions herein are the personal views of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official views of the U.S. Government, the Department of Defense or the Department of the Navy.

Contributions and Feedback Welcome Send articles, photographs (min. 300 dpi electronic) and feedback to:

Executive Editor Senior Chief Petty Officer Michael Mitchell

Managing Editor

Petty Officer 1st Class Trevor Welsh

Layout and Design Petty Officer 2nd Class Phil Ladouceur Mr. Nicholas Groesch


Surface Warfare Magazine Commander, Naval Surface Forces, U.S. Pacific Fleet Public Affairs Office, N01P 2841 Rendova Road San Diego, CA 92155 Phone: (619) 437-2735



If it Floats, it Fights.

2 • Commander's Corner Featured Article 5  •  Pacific Surface Action Group Integrates, Strengthens Force

Material Readiness 22  •  Navy's Most Advanced Warship, USS Zumwalt, Commissions in Baltimore, Arrives in San Diego

24  •  F-35 Integration on USS America Forges Path to the Future 10  •  Surface Warfare: A Year in Review 28  •  Navy Tests Surface-to-Surface Missile f or LCS Module 12  •  LCS Reserve Support: Making a Difference Overseas 29  •  Coordination, Collaboration, Alignment Help Makin Island ARG Set Record Combat Readiness 30  •  The Expeditionary Sea Base, 14  •  Digital Warriors: Strengthening Power at Sea Surface Forces Train to Meet the Cyber Threat Heritage & Recognition Personnel Readiness

17  •  Princeton, WTIs 32  •  Zumwalt Speaks! Launch Live Missiles Selections from the Z-Grams During SWATT Exercise 34  •  Pearl Harbor: 18  •  USS Gonzalez Strengthens Navy Action Reports Tell the Story Naval Power from the Sea During Exercise Cutlass Fury Blogging From the Fleet 38  •  Indeed, There are ‘Ratcatchers’ Among Us… 39  •  What is a 'Ratcatcher?' 40 • Command Changes 1


Commander's Corner


y the time these words are read, the holidays will have come to a close and we will have begun charging forward into the new year. For our Shipmates who spent the holiday season deployed, please know the entire Surface Force team is sincerely grateful for the sacrifices made by you and your families. For those who had the good fortune to be home for the holidays, I hope you had a chance to reconnect with family, rest and recharge — 2017 is going to be an exciting year! Appropriately, this year’s action kicks off at the annual Surface Navy Association Symposium (SNA) in Crystal City, Va., with the core theme of “Distributed Lethality: Enabling Sea Control.” Serving as both an operating concept and an organizing principle, Distributed Lethality was first introduced community-wide at SNA two years ago. As an operating concept, it’s about adding greater offensive punch and defensive resilience by leveraging two key attributes of the Surface Force — namely persistence and



Editorial by

Vice Adm. Tom Rowden Commander, Naval Surface Forces

mobility. This is accomplished by increasing individual unit lethality and distributing the force across a wider expanse of geography in order to cause operational problems for adversaries. Recent articles on the Pacific Surface Action Group deployment and F-35 integration show how the concept is already taking shape in the fleet. As an organizing principle, Distributed Lethality drives change across all elements of our community — namely Tactics, Talent, Training, and Tools (T4). T4 has a role in every effort we make to become better Warfighters through a more distributed and lethal force. Make no mistake; Distributed Lethality is not an end in itself. It is a means to an end — maritime superiority through Sea Control.

When it matters and where it matters, we must be able to control the seas, including the skies above and electromagnetic environment, in support of national interests. In the decades following the end of the Cold War, the U.S. Navy’s ability to control the seas was relatively unchallenged. Today, that ability is increasingly being tested by proliferating sea denial capabilities wielded by both nation states and militant organizations. USS Mason (DDG 87) being targeted by a rebel group while operating in the Red Sea last year is a great example of how sophisticated technology can be used in the maritime environment… and not in a good way — check out the article about “Ratcatchers” on page 38 to get a fuller appreciation

of the challenges our Warfighters may encounter. Naval Doctrine tells us that, “Sea Control is the essence of seapower and is a necessary ingredient in the successful accomplishment of all naval missions.” Its significance is central to our profession, so much so, that I recently signed out the new Surface Warfare Strategy to provide the vision of applying Distributed Lethality to the mandate of controlling the seas. This is, and will continue to be, my primary focus of effort throughout the coming year. As always, I look forward to hearing your feedback on our programs and initiatives. It can’t be said enough — I am proud of you, proud of the Surface Force, and proud to be a Surface Warrior...let’s make it a great year! * 3


Photo by PO2 Will Gaskill Photo courtesy PO3 Joseph Montemarano

Photo by PO3 Chelsea D. Daily Photo by SN Trenton Kotlartz

Photo by PO3 Chelsea Troy Milburn


Pictures from Spruance, Dcatur and Momsen's homecomings.


PACSAG Integrates, Strengthens Force

Photo by PO2 Will Gaskill

Story by

Capt. Charles Johnson Commodore, DESRON 31

Photo by PO1 Jay Pugh

ABOVE: Spruance, Decatur and Momsen steam in formation, deployed as part of PACSAG. LEFT: Photos from PACSAG deployment.


s three destroyers, USS Momsen (DDG 92), USS Decatur (DDG 73) and USS Spruance (DDG 111) sailed west last April as the inaugural Pacific Surface Action Group (PACSAG), our goal was to increase flexible options for the U.S. Pacific Fleet (PACFLT) and U.S. Pacific Command (PACOM) commanders. Utilizing the two concepts of Distributed Lethality (DL) and U.S. 3rd Fleet (C3F) Forward, our focus was to work with as many players as possible. We operated and exercised with a diverse array of assets to include Marine Corps and Air Force aircraft as well as our naval allies and friends throughout the entire Western Pacific. PACSAG had three overarching and complementary goals: 1) increase the tools and options available to PACOM and PACFLT; 2) serve as the initial maneuver element for C3F Forward; and 3) show the benefits of an offensive-minded Distributed Force with an embarked command element.


SURFACE WARFARE WINTER 2017 Photo by PO3 Gerald Reynolds

Having operated together for 10 days of Independent Deployer Certification off the coast of Southern California, PACSAG went into the Western Pacific looking to innovate and expand its “toolbox,” injecting what we saw and learned at sea to discussions on experimental tactics. Prior to PACSAG departing Hawaii, Adm. Scott Swift, commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet highlighted the importance of the deployment. “What is really unique here with the PACSAG is that instead of sending independent deployers out, which is what you would normally do with Spruance, Momsen and Decatur, you’re deployed together as a PACSAG,” Swift said during an all-hands call aboard Decatur. “It’s part of that effort that you’ve been reading about called Distributed Lethality, meaning the combined lethality of a three-ship SAG is much greater than an individual DDG... The three-ship PACSAG that Decatur, Momsen and Spruance are part of will pave the way for another SAG, just like this one, attached to the largedeck amphib so that it will become what I’m calling an ‘Up-Gunned ESG’.” By the time we entered the Sea of Japan and South China Sea, the teams were thinking as one – operating, exercising, innovating, and expanding the toolbox together. “Find me a target!” – that was our mentality as we went forward trying to operationalize the Maritime Strike Tomahawk; looking at how an Adaptive Force Package – in our case three destroyers – could gain and maintain sea control in the Western Pacific. We exercised with national, Navy, joint and combined assets to find and identify contacts at long range – considerably out ranging any other surface, subsurface or air-launched conventional weapons in theater. We routinely exercised data links and tactical concepts to push the envelope of what targeting sources could be utilized. Equally important, our Tomahawk Strike Teams were making every ship a shooter and passing fleet ideas to the working groups developing the Navy’s new weapons systems – thus incorporating PACSAG thoughts and experimentation of maritime strike concepts as they were unfolding. Along with developing Navy weapons and tactics, PACSAG had the opportunity to operate and exercise extensively with our air wing – otherwise known as Pacific Air Forces (PACAF). Stationed 6

Photo by PO3 Gerald Reynolds Photo by PO2 Alex Hewette


"Being able to concentrate and disperse all of that capability based on the situation will provide commanders with tremendous operational flexibility." -Adm. Scott Swift

on Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam and deploying with approximately half the staff, we were able to capitalize on our proximity to the air operations center by building personal relationships before deployment. USAF aircraft flew more than 100 sorties in support of or exercising with PACSAG in the South China and Philippine Seas. Through the course of the deployment, we integrated with bombers (B-52s, B-1s and B-2s), F-15s, Global Hawks, and other intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance platforms, progressing from communications drills to scenarios with maritime strike and air defense. This integration significantly increased the radius of our sea control capabilities, identified nuances between our systems, and facilitated track information sharing for joint dynamic targeting. Our operations with the bombers also increased their situational awareness during missions, as we were able to communicate beyond line of sight to pass pertinent

surface and air contact information to the approaching bombers. PACSAG also had the opportunity to operate with Airborne Warning and Control Systems (AWACS) aircraft and extensively plan scenarios for various mission sets to distribute our offensive capability geographically. The incorporation of fighters with destroyers absolutely expanded today’s toolbox of defensive capabilities. Increasing the units’ abilities to operate in a denied environment and maintain a solid air defense picture, as well as innovate capabilities for maritime surveillance/ targeting through long-range, line of sight links, again enhanced available options for the joint commander in both sea and air control. PACSAG also exercised with USMC assets and fixed-wing aircraft out of Iwakuni, Japan, and the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit’s Aviation Combat Element aircraft off of the USS Bonhomme Richard

Photosfrom the PACSAG deployment.



Photo by PO2 Will Gaskill

Spruance, Decatur and Momsen steam in formation, deployed as part of PACSAG.


(LHD 6) Expeditionary Strike Group (BHR ESG) ships. One training example was a combined air-toair exercise and fast-attack craft/fast-inshore attack craft defense exercise. The scenario employed MH60R helicopters as a maritime air control platform and vectoring AH-1 Cobra helicopters and MH-60S helicopters with an assortment of weapons to destroy a surface balloon, also known as a "killer tomato". We also conducted numerous warfare drills with BHR ESG, flexing ESG command and control with multiple synthetic and simulated exercises. These events included Expendable Mobile Anti-Submarine Training Target prosecutions with maritime patrol and reconnaissance aircraft and MH-60R helicopters dipping sonar and multi-threat exercises against anti-ship cruise missilecapable submarines. Such exercises quickly built watch team confidence and cohesion across the force. The coordination to plan and execute these events went smoothly – a testament to the crews and staff action officers in both groups. Later in the deployment, Swift noted the importance of the PACSAG and BHR ESG integration. "As I said in April when the PACSAG deployed, this type of training with the BHR ESG will pave the way for the inaugural deployment of an ESG embarked with joint strike fighters (F-35B Lightning II) and escorted by a SAG like this one, which I call an upgunned ESG," said Swift. "Being able to concentrate and disperse all of that capability based on the situation will provide commanders with tremendous operational flexibility." Everyone who participated came away with a greater understanding of what the future has in store when the up-gunned ESG operates forward. Lastly, PACSAG ships, as a group and individually, were able to operate with numerous allies and friends. Australia was easy to coordinate, as one Destroyer Squadron 31 staff member is an Australian exchange officer and absolutely integral to the staff. Our initial event in the Western Pacific was a trilateral exercise with South Korea and France off Busan, Republic of Korea (ROK), followed quickly by two bilateral exercises with two separate ROK squadrons. These operations exercised all warfare areas and enhanced proficiency with Link 16 networks. Additionally, PACSAG exercised with the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force twice—a SAG versus SAG event and Exercise SHAREM 186. The SAG versus SAG was quickly overtaken by realworld tasking for both groups, however the SHAREM

was a huge success. Decatur and JDS Teruzuki (DDG 162) were able to maintain convergence zone contact throughout the exercise and use aircraft to pounce on a submarine. Our embarked National Weather Service (NWS) Operational Advisory Team (NOAT) was absolutely instrumental in assisting the watch teams to tactically exploit the water column, maintaining contact and remaining well clear of submarine torpedoes. The inclusion of NOAT to our mix of resources definitely increased our resilience and allowed PACSAG to stay in the fight. Spruance was also able to participate in Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training (CARAT) Indonesia and Singapore, adding a surface combatant to the Indonesian CARAT and enabling increased complexity for the Singapore exercise. These operations continuously augmented the relationships between the U.S. Navy and our partners in the Western Pacific. The three-destroyer deployment was originally announced by Vice Adm. Tom Rowden, commander, Naval Surface Forces, back in January 2016, to make the surface fleet more formidable against sophisticated adversaries and test concepts that impose costs to adversaries’ resources. "We need to deploy the ships and begin to understand the effects we can achieve," Rowden said. "We can then begin to articulate those to the combatant commanders.” Participating in exercises and performing missions during the deployment, the PACSAG was able to offer greater flexibility to PACOM and PACFLT while also demonstrating the practical benefits and uses of the C3F Forward and DL. “Our goal is to deceive the enemy, target the enemy, and destroy the enemy,” Rowden said. “If we can execute that, we can change the calculus of our adversaries and our potential adversaries.” Over the course of our deployment, we showed that the PACSAG could indeed introduce a new variable into our adversaries equations, one that will leave them recalculating their posture for quite a while. Amphibious warship USS Wasp (LHD 1) will deploy next as part of a six-ship force. The up-gunned ESG to include the traditional three ships of an amphibious ready group (ARG), Marine expeditionary unit, a squadron of Marine F-35Bs, and three guided-missile destroyers. This deployment will build upon what the PACSAG tested and will combine a three-ship ARG with the extended capabilities of the F-35 and a threeship SAG. *


Man. Train. Equip.

OKINAWA, Japan (Oct. 28, 2016) Seaman Isaiah Hunter heaves a mooring line aboard amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6) during sea and anchor detail. Bonhomme Richard, flagship of the Bonhomme Richard Expeditionary Strike Group, is operating in the 7th Fleet area of responsibility in support of security and stability in the IndoAsia Pacific region. (U.S. Navy photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Jeanette Mullinax/Released) 9


Photo by PO3 Pasquale Sena

Surface Warfare: A Year in Review Story by

Capt. Rick Cheeseman Director, Surface Warfare Officer Assignments, PERS-41

ABOVE: Ensign Arthur Morales aboard USS Gonzalez (DDG 66)


As we welcome 2017 and open a new chapter in our Surface Warfare story, we look back at the banner year that was 2016. Many longtime efforts came to fruition and started paying dividends to the Surface community. From midshipmen to division officers, department heads and beyond, new policies and new initiatives improved our opportunities, our flexibility and our community overall. The Midshipman Early Ship Selection Initiative was piloted over the summer and fleet response was outstanding. A total of 18 midshipmen, 10 from the Naval Academy and 8 from NROTC performed so well on their first class cruises that commanding officers offered them the chance to return as ensigns. The midshipmen still have time to decide whether or not to take the offer or select a different ship with the rest of their peers, but at the time of this writing six had accepted their ship’s invitation. This initiative places emphasis on “Superior Performance at Sea” even at the midshipman level – elevating the first class cruise to a potential job interview. The NROTC ship selection process continued its evolution last fall as we incorporated a video chat option between the midshipman and detailers. Tested with only the first five midshipmen in spring 2016, this option was open to every one of the 62 midshipmen

who selected their ship in November. A step forward from our traditional “phone in” option, this takes ship selection another step into the 21st century, putting a “face to the name” between midshipman and detailer. The day following ship selection, commands were also provided contact information to reach out to their new shipmates and welcome them to the fleet; many even received calls directly from their future commanding officers. Surface Warfare is also proud to lead the way in promoting new and exciting opportunities for our junior officers. These new opportunities are seen as force multipliers when leading Sailors and operating ships at sea. Opportunities such as the Fleet Scholar Education Program (FSEP) and SECNAV Tours with Industry (TWI) have officers studying at prestigious institutions like Harvard and working at corporations like Apple and LinkedIn. Every one of these officers is gaining valuable experiences that will enable our fleet to fight and operate at the next level. The opportunities for junior officers have never been more wide spread in quality and quantity, and the fleet is responding. The level of talent among the officers who applied for these coveted spots during the most recent Talent Management Board was truly incredible. Those selected for these programs are among the best of the best of what Surface Warfare

PERSONNEL READINESS Photo by PO1 Maddelin Angebrand

has to offer. Participation in these programs is truly an investment in the community’s future. The Department Head Retention Bonus (DHRB) came online in September and is a new way to think about attracting and retaining our Navy’s top talent. DHRB is the first pay for performance bonus in the DoD and it rewards junior officers for their superior performance at sea. This tiered incentive program ensures those who screen for department head at the earliest career opportunity – their first look, which usually occurs after reaching three years of commissioned service – are eligible to receive three extra payments of $10,000 a year for an ultimate total bonus of $105,000. Officers screening on their second look will receive two incentive payments of $10,000 each in addition to the standard bonus of $75,000 for a bonus totaling $95,000. Those screening a year later on their third look will receive a standard base bonus of $75,000. To date, our community’s top talent is already making the commitment – 171 contracts have been signed from year group 2012 and 70 contracts submitted from year group 2013. This year we introduced the first plans and tactics officers (PTO) into select ships across the fleet. This additional first-tour department head was a shakeup to traditional ship department head manning, but fleet response has been overwhelmingly positive regarding the impact PTO has on the wardroom and the ship. PTOs are not just another department head, but another department head who is trained in the Navy Planning Process at the Maritime Staff Operators Course at the Naval War College, who is trained at the Undersea Warfare (USW) Command Course at Fleet Anti-Submarine (ASW) Center and finally, who is trained at a course specifically designed for PTOs taught by Naval Surface Warfare Development Command (NSWDC), the same organization that trains the fleet’s warfare tactics instructors (WTIs). These department heads possess an operational planning expertise and skillset that commanders worldwide demand and will prove vital in the years to come. PTOs have been assigned to 25 ships with an expected increase to 46 ships by the end of 2017, with the intent to

have them on all ships in the fleet by 2019. Last year also saw significant changes to overall department head distribution across the fleet through a series of manning initiatives designed to optimize our department head experience in key billets at sea. We’ve revitalized efforts to maintain department head tour lengths to 18 months each and all Afloat Training Group (ATG) ABOVE: Cmdr. engineering assessor billets and Network-centric Mike Wagner, CO Warfare (NCW)/Riverine Squadron (RIVRON) billets of PCU John Finn have been changed from second tour department heads (DDG 113), overseas operations during to post department heads. Addressing fleet concerns missile test firing. about older engineering plants in Flight I DDGs, the BELOW: Ensign chief engineer tour is now a single, longer, 36-month tour Edward Novack and has been coupled with a spot promote to lieutenant tracks surface contacts manually aboardUSS commander. Additionally, we’ve piloted ending the Barry (DDG 52) weapons-combat systems officer (WEPS-CSO) fleet up in Aegis ships in favor of allowing the commanding officer to decide Photo by PO2 Kevin Cunningham which department head they “fleetup” to CSO. These targeted changes didn’t only come to our cruiser/ destroyer (CRUDES) ships, we’ve also retooled our department head sequencing on our amphibious ships. Making the amphibious squadron (PHIBRON) N3 billet a post department head tour and landing helicopter dock (LHD) navigators second tour department heads keeps our critical amphibious experience in ship’s company leading Sailors and operating ships at sea. The good BELOW: Cmdr. news isn’t just for surface warfare officers (1110s) – we’ve Manuel Hernandez (right), CO of USS also made mine countermeasures ships (MCM) and Spruance (DDG dock landing ships (LSD) chief engineers limited duty 111), and Lt. Cmdr. officers, keeping our vital engineering experience where Scott French on it belongs – at sea. deployment as part It has never been a better time to be a SWO – our of PACSAG. community has established itself as the Department of Defense’s premier organization Photo by PO2 Will Gaskill for career flexibility, immediate leadership, graduate education, and adventure. We value each and every one of our officers and continue to strive to foster an environment where they can grow personally and professionally and where everyone feels their contribution is valued. I look forward to expanding on the already wide range of opportunities available to our officers and to what 2017 has in store! * 11

SURFACE WARFARE WINTER 2017 Photo courtesy of LCSRON 1

LCS Reserve Support: Making a Difference Overseas Story by

Lt. Johannes Schonberg & SCPO John Ruela LCSRON 1 Public Affairs

Navy Reservists board USS Freedom



ost days, Annika McCalla works in Denton, Texas, as an engineer for an oil and gas company. On this day, however, Petty Officer 1st Class McCalla was in Singapore working aboard littoral combat ship USS Fort Worth (LCS 3), as the unofficial “Oil Queen,” responsible for inventorying, testing, and bringing aboard fuel and oil. McCalla and nine other Navy Reservists completed the first reserve overseas LCS support mission in Singapore. The team, a forward logistics element (FLE), was hand-selected from Navy Reserve (NR) LCS units from across America. As top Sailors from the LCS community, they carried the responsibility of demonstrating an entirely new and robust Reserve LCS mission set. In this new mission, Navy reservists would travel the globe to integrate with embarked active duty crews to support maintenance and anti-terrorism/force protection (ATFP) requirements aboard LCS. In June, the FLE members converged in San Diego and then flew to Singapore. After traversing the Pacific, the Reserve team boarded Fort Worth and settled in for their three week mission assisting the ship’s force in repairs and preparations for Fort Worth’s return transit to San Diego. Ships like Fort Worth are slated to become a foundational pillar of the Navy’s surface fleet. Upon completion, 40 ships of the class are expected to compose one sixth of the Navy’s fleet. The LCS program innovates manning changes as well as technology. The core crew is composed of 50 Sailors who are responsible for the maintenance and operation of each ship. Extensive automation and contractor support assists in minimizing the crew’s workload but only the ship’s crew can take the ship through the many levels of

certification required for operation. It is here the Reserve community finds an important niche. As Sailors, reservists can augment the crew in ways that cannot be done by contractors, such as facilitating tagouts, contractor escorts, equipment operations, force protection watches, and more. "I'm excited to see the contributions of these Sailors in the coming year and beyond,” said Capt. Jordy Harrison, commander, Littoral Combat Ship Squadron 1. “The skills and knowledge they bring will aid us in maintaining a continuous presence in forward deployed theaters." The LCS Reserve community is on-track to become the second largest Reserve organization and has established nearly two dozen units across the country under two Reserve LCS commodores based in San Diego and Mayport, Florida, who work with their active duty counterparts to optimize the role of the reserves. While aboard, the FLE supported the ship through a continuous maintenance availability, planned maintenance availability, damage control material assessments, engineering light off assessment, shipboard explosive safety inspection, preventative maintenance system, gauge calibration, and equipment validation. "Our Reserve Sailors bring the skills necessary to add value in maintenance, watchstanding and other support areas to help the core crews effectively accomplish their mission," said Capt. Kenneth R. Blackmon, commanding officer, NR LCS Squadron 2. Their success has helped prove the viability of integrating Reserve component Sailors with deployed LCS crews. The Fort Worth detachment provided a model and laid the groundwork to expand the role the Reserve component plays in overseas LCS operations. *


Man. Train. Equip.

SOUTH CHINA SEA (Oct. 6, 2016) Sailors conduct firefighting drills on the flight deck aboard the guided-missile destroyer USS Decatur (DDG 73). Decatur, along with guided-missile destroyers USS Momsen (DDG 92) and USS Spruance (DDG 111), are deployed in support of maritime security and stability in the Indo-AsiaPacific as part of a U.S. 3rd Fleet Pacific Surface Action Group (PACSAG) under Commander, Destroyer Squadron 31 (CDS 31). (U.S. Navy photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Gerald Dudley Reynolds/Released) 13


Digital Warriors

Photo by PO2 Zachary Bell

Surface Forces Train to Meet the Cyber threat Story by

Cmdr. Robert Bryans

SURFPAC Force Cyber Officer

Sailors participate in a SURFPAC sponsored Hackathon.



s he arrived aboard USS Comstock (LSD 42), Cmdr. Wilfredo Cruzbaez proceeded to the amphibious dock landing ship’s version of Radio Shack where he met with cybersecurity workforce personnel. Cruzbaez is the Force Command, Control, Communications, Computers, & Intelligence (C4I) officer at Commander, Naval Surface Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet (SURFPAC). He is leading the type commander’s efforts to prepare surface ships for the Fleet Cyber Command (FCC) Cybersecurity Inspection (CSI). No ship in the Surface Force has passed the inspection in the past three years. The string of failures isn’t due to a lack of effort, time or oversight. The cybersecurity workforce, with assistance from Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (SPAWAR) and oversight from

immediate superior in command (ISIC), type commander and fleet commander, spends roughly 240 days slugging their way through CSI’s three stages. You would think this is more than enough time to prepare for and pass a five-day inspection. Yet, not a single surface ship had passed. Comstock would be different. “In the case of Comstock, SURFPAC and SPAWAR dedicated hundreds of man hours to correcting C4I system configuration issues stemming from the ship’s CANES (Consolidated Afloat Networks and Enterprise Services) installation, and training ship’s force in information assurance and good cybersecurity and cyber hygiene practices. Most importantly, Comstock’s commanding officer set the tone for his Sailors, making cybersecurity the responsibility of the entire ship, and not just his

cybersecurity personnel. As a result, Comstock became the first surface ship to pass the CSI Stage III inspection,” said Cruzbaez. Comstock passed her Stage III inspection in February 2016 with a score of 70.3 percent. As significant as this was – a small but important step in the right direction – SURFPAC was simultaneously developing a number of cyber initiatives to make long-lasting improvements in surface ship cybersecurity. The first and most important initiative was the creation of a Surface Force Cyber Warfare (CW) Mission Area to train and certify surface ships in cyberspace operations. Utilizing the Surface Force Readiness Manual (SFRM) “crawl, walk, run” model, and drawing upon the experience and expertise of information systems technicians at Afloat Training Group


Pacific (ATGPAC), information professionals at SURFPAC, Naval Information Forces (NAVIFOR), and Navy Information Operations Command San Diego (NIOC) the CW Mission Area provides surface ships with in-depth Basic Phase Unit Level training. This training covers cyber administration and programs, traditional security, network defense and vulnerability management, cyber operations proficiency, and casualty and incident response. It also includes two NIOC Blue Team visits and the NIOC cyber network team trainer. From April to November 2016, CW was successfully piloted aboard USS Kidd (DDG 100). In 2017, CW will be executed on more than 20 surface ships on the East and West Coasts. “The Cyber Warfare mission area is the most comprehensive cybersecurity, information assurance, and defensive cyber operations training ever given to a ship in a systematic way,” said Senior Chief Petty Officer Robert Halsey, the lead Cyber Warfare trainer at ATG San Diego. “By that, I mean not in a pieced-together, ad hoc manner. To build the curriculum, we identified applicable cyber requirements from across the Navy and brought them together into repeatable and certifying events.” While CW effectively addresses the Basic Phase unit level training needs of surface ships, to be truly successful it has required complimentary cyber improvements be made to shipboard C4I networks. To this end, SURFPAC and SPAWAR agreed to the creation of a Cyber Baseline Availability. This availability would occur toward the end of a ship’s maintenance phase, as the ship’s C4I network was being modernized and brought out of layup. The network baseline would consist of scanning and patching all C4I assets, training and guidance, hardware and software configuration, network topology diagrams, and a C4I end-to-end systems operability test to ensure network integration. SPAWAR also agreed to ensure all newly installed

“We must take the defense of our computer networks as seriously as defending our warships against an incoming cruise missile.” -Vice Adm. Tom Rowden

C4I assets meet FCC cybersecurity requirements (zero Category 1 cyber vulnerabilities). To further enhance Surface Force cybersecurity, SURFPAC and SURFLANT will also soon promulgate cybersecurity policy in the form of a Cybersecurity Instruction and Cyber Departmental Organizational Regulations Manual (DORM). The Cybersecurity Instruction is a “one-stop shop” reference for ships that lays out CSWF organization, training requirements, asset management and configuration control, security and enforcement policies, compliance and vulnerability management, and disaster, recovery and incident management. The Cyber DORM is very similar in practice to the Surface Force E-DORM and NAVDORM. “Whereas the Cybersecurity Instruction is the ‘who, what, why’ for ships, the Cyber DORM is the

‘how and when’. The Cyber DORM rolls up existing fleetwide best practices in one instruction to help ships establish an effective battle rhythm in their Radio Shack,” said Lt. Peyton Price, CNSP Force cyber operations officer, and author of the Cyber DORM. While policy guidance, training, and C4I network improvements are moving the Surface Force in the right direction, these improvements must be accompanied by a change in shipboard culture. Commanding officers, their wardrooms, Chiefs Mess, and their junior Sailors must understand the importance of maintaining good cybersecurity and cyber hygiene, must understand the threat to the ship’s combat readiness when it is not maintained, and must initiate the necessary behavioral changes. To assist ISICs and ships in making these changes, SURFPAC and SURFLANT have formed Cyber Readiness Teams (CRTs). 15


At SURFPAC, the CRTs conduct training and assist visits aboard ships for three specific reasons. First, the CRTs perform cyber hardening prior to ships departing for deployment. This is a complete network inspection, with special attention paid to C4I, CS, and weapon system assets on the ship’s network that may impact a specific deployment mission set, if not operating properly from a cybersecurity perspective. Second, the CRTs conduct cyber hygiene visits when it appears based on CRT trend analysis that the ship’s CSWF is struggling and in need of additional training or assistance correcting system casualties. Third, the CRTs perform cyber readiness visits to assist with inspection preparations, such as prior to a TYCOM material inspection, INSURV, or FCC CSI. Over the past eight months, SURFPAC CRTs have performed over 30 training and assist visits, resulting in a cybersecurity compliance and integrity rate 30 percent higher than ships not receiving a visit (94 percent versus 65 percent). Another important joint SURFPAC-SURFLANT cyber initiative having an immediate effect on the Surface Force cyber culture 16

is the Cyber Bravo Zulu Program. Similar to the Surface Force Gauge Calibration program and the SPY Honor Roll, which recognize ships that meet gauge calibration and SPY radar monthly requirements, SURFPAC and SURFLANT release a monthly Cyber BZ message to recognize ships that meet cybersecurity compliance and integrity requirements. “We evaluate the cybersecurity compliance and integrity data found in the Vulnerability Remediation Asset Manager (VRAM) scanning and reporting tool,” said Lt. j.g. Adriel Frazier, SURFPAC force cyber readiness officer. “Ships who meet the requirements appear in the monthly Cyber BZ message. We then build a plan with the ISIC, and ship Communications Officers and Information Security Managers, to correct issues found in the VRAM report.” Lastly, as if these type commander cyber initiatives needed any further promoting, SURFPAC teamed with the Naval Postgraduate School’s Center for Cyber Warfare, NAVIFOR, NIOC, Navy Cyber Defense Operations Command, FCC/C10F, 3rd Fleet, and SPAWAR to conduct of a series of Cyber Hackathons.

“The hackathons provide great training for our sea and shore cybersecurity experts and give them the opportunity to exercise elements of computer network defense without compromising the integrity of their ship’s network,” said Price, who leads the SURFPAC hackathons. SURFPAC’s most recent hackathon included a one-day Surface Force off-site, during which Vice Adm. Tom Rowden, commander, Naval Surface Forces, personally addressed more than 60 surface commodores, deputies, and commanding officers in attendance. “We must take the defense of our computer networks as seriously as defending our warships against an incoming cruise missile,” Rowden said. “You are the frontline on cyber defense and our surface combatant crews are counting on you." Naval Surface Forces is working diligently to clarify cyber requirements, streamline cyber policies, and ensure no command is left unprepared to meet the cyber threat. In this era of growing cyber complexities, Naval Surface Force is committed to assisting each ship to fight at peak performance while reducing the burden on shipboard personnel. *


Princeton, WTIs Launch Live Missiles during SWATT Exercise


uided-missile cruiser USS Princeton (CG 59) fired a Standard Missile 2 (SM-2) at a target Sept. 29 in a live missile-fire event as part of the Surface Warfare Advanced Tactical Training (SWATT). SWATT is a three-week exercise designed to tactically prepare surface forces for carrier strike group and amphibious ready group integration. "Part of what we're doing out here is called 'live fire with a purpose,'" said Capt. Christopher Barnes, deputy commander of Naval Surface and Mine Warfighting Development Center (SMWDC). "We're shooting weapons in tactical situations that mirror what you would, potentially, see when you’re deployed." Four ships participated in live-fire missions on an aerial target over the course of two days. "This program is done to provide tactically relevant and realistic scenarios," said Lt. Cmdr. Derek Rader, a warfare tactics instructor (WTI) embarked on Princeton. "What we've been chartered to do is to support the ships in their event and help them with their scenario development. The flip side to that is we also

help with the analysis so that what comes to the strike group commander and the engineering community is something that's actionable and easy to understand." Thirteen WTIs and more than 20 staff personnel from SMWDC and other organizations were underway on six ships with the Nimitz Carrier Strike Group, leading SWATT in the Southern California operating area. SWATT prepares ships to work with other ships in a carrier strike group by bringing the units together through a 'crawl, walk, run' process. "It's new; we're working out the kinks in the process," said Lt. j.g. Zach Arnold, the fire control officer on Princeton. "I think it's great for a new division officer like me. It's truly rewarding and it keeps you from going tactically stale." Lt. Cmdr. Christopher Thomas, Princeton's operations officer agreed. "SWATT has stretched the imagination of our Sailors and impressed upon them the rigor of the Composite Training Unit Exercise, and what it means to meet the high-end threats of tomorrow," Thomas said. *

Story & Photo By

PO1 Trever Anderson

SMWDC Public Affairs

Lt. Serg Samndzic and Lt. Aaron Jochimsen, Warfare Tactics Instructors (WTI) of the Naval Surface and Mine Warfighting Development Center (SMWDC) coordinate missile exercise rehearsals aboard Princeton



USS Gonzalez Strengthens Naval Power from the Sea during Exercise Cutlass Fury Story by

Cmdr. Stefan Walch Commanding Officer, USS Gonzalez (DDG 66)

Gonzalez in Halifax, Nova Scotia during a passing exercise to begin the at-sea phase of Exercise Cutlass Fury 2016.



rleigh Burke-class guidedmissile destroyer USS Gonzalez (DDG 66), also known as “Fighting Freddy,” deployed to support operations in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa from November 2015 to July 2016, during which time Gonzalez was at the peak of core naval competencies, responding to multi-threat challenges. Throughout work-ups and deployment, my crew was tested and proved successful in multiple fleet operating areas. With military allies in the North Atlantic, we continued to hone our built-in knowledge of the battlespace, connections among our network of partners and our ability to quickly respond to the environment. In September, we participated in Exercise Cutlass Fury 2016, a Canadian-led, combined, joint maritime exercise designed to promote and enhance cooperation in the Atlantic. This year’s exercise incorporated naval, air and land

components from Canada, France, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States. This exercise provided the team another opportunity to demonstrate the ship’s motto of “beyond the call.” This motto serves as a reminder of our namesake and Medal of Honor recipient, Marine Sgt. Freddy Gonzalez, who surpassed the nation’s call during the Battle of Hue City in protecting those he led over several days, while fighting enemy forces until he was mortally wounded. At sea and engaged in maneuvers with partner nations, the true test of our abilities was run through the paces daily during Cutlass Fury. The exercise provided a forum for valuable training to enhance shared readiness and our ability to operate in the Atlantic. We exercised air defense, maritime interdiction operations, weapons firing and most predominantly anti-submarine warfare. Recognizing the rapid rate of change occurring in both technology and the maritime

domain, it is not lost on us that other world powers also see the value in anti-submarine capabilities and are increasingly conducting antisubmarine warfare exercises. We benefit from shared interests and objectives with our partner nations that have been fortified for decades. We continue to grow and maintain our team’s edge for combat at sea – relationships matter and we are building connections with the next generation of international partners who will stand the watch. The final stretch of Cutlass Fury 16 included many training events, during which I saw a marked growth in understanding among participating forces, demonstrated through our ability to better negotiate shared water and air space, and plan and act as a combined force. With our network of partners, we continue to build capable and adaptable maritime partnerships that are beyond the call. *


Man. Train. Equip. MEDITERRANEAN SEA (Nov. 7, 2016) Petty Officer 1st Class Craig Crippon, left, from Vancouver, Wash., hands Petty Officer 3rd Class Justin Santis, from Miami, a thermal switch during maintenance aboard USS Ross (DDG 71) Nov. 7, 2016. Ross, an Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer, forward-deployed to Rota, Spain, is conducting naval operations in the U.S. 6th Fleet area of operations in support of U.S. national security interests in Europe and Africa. (U.S. Navy photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Theron J. Godbold/Released)



-Adm. Harry Harris


Navy's Most Advanced Warship, USS Zumwalt, Commissions in Baltimore, Arrives in San Diego Story From USS Zumwalt (DDG 1000) Public Affairs



Photo by PO1 Nathan Laird

"It doesn't look like other ships and it does things other ships cannot do." -Hon. Ray Mabus

their way of thinking about how we employ our forces, providing an asymmetric advantage. Working with Arleigh Burkeclass destroyers, littoral combat ships, and amphibious ships to form adaptive force packages, Zumwalt-class destroyers will use its computing capabilities to make these groups more lethal through increased range, deception, computer integration, and data analysis from various platforms. With its stealth, size, power, and advanced combat systems, this warship will serve as a centerpiece for deterrence and stability in the maritime environment. "This destroyer, like the others in our fleet, is capable of projecting power, no doubt," said Mabus. "The Zumwalt-class is much larger than today's destroyers with a considerably larger flight deck – enough

Photo by PO1 Armando Gonzales

he Navy's newest and most technologically advanced warship, USS Zumwalt (DDG 1000) was commissioned into active service, Oct. 15, at North Locust Point in Baltimore. Zumwalt, the lead ship of a class of next-generation multimission destroyers, features a state-of-the-art electric propulsion system, wave-piercing tumblehome hull, stealth design, and the latest warfighting technology and weaponry available. Secretary of the Navy, the Hon. Ray Mabus, delivered the ceremony's principal address. "This ship is an example of a larger initiative to increase operational stability and give the U.S. a strategic advantage," said Mabus. "Our Navy and our Marine Corps, uniquely, provide presence – around the globe, around the clock – ensuring stability, reassuring allies, deterring adversaries, and providing the nation's leaders with options in times of crisis." The ship's co-sponsors, Ann Zumwalt and Mouzetta Zumwalt-Weathers, are daughters of former Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Elmo R. Zumwalt Jr., after whom the ship is named. The sisters were an integral part of the ceremony, giving the order to "man our ship and bring her to life," in keeping with naval tradition. The Zumwalt-class destroyer will be capable of performing a range of deterrence, power projection, sea control, and command and control missions while allowing the Navy to evolve with new systems and missions. It does all of this while maintaining its stealth – making this visually imposing ship difficult to find whether close to the shore or far out to sea. "Today's ceremony marked the culmination of over three years of dedication and hard work by some of the finest Sailors I have had the pleasure to lead," said Capt. James A. Kirk, commanding officer of Zumwalt. "The only thing more impressive than the capabilities of the ship are the capabilities of its fine crew." Zumwalt will challenge adversaries and

space to operate host Joint Strike Fighters, MV-22 Ospreys, and unmanned systems and a vertical launch system second to none." In addition to its size, the Zumwalt class will be the first Navy warships to utilize an integrated power system that will produce enough power to run current systems, as well as the power required for future weapons, computing, and sensor systems. Zumwalt generates approximately 78 megawatts of power, almost as much as a nuclearpowered aircraft carrier. This means the ship can operate all of its systems and still generate enough electricity to power a small town, which provides the extra capacity to accommodate future weapons and computing systems. Combined with its size and power, Zumwalt will be able


-Vice Adm. Tom Rowden

"The only thing more impressive than the capabilities of the ship are the capabilities of its fine crew." -Capt. James Kirk

Navy continued to be its Sailors, and as such began quality of life improvements throughout the fleet. He was considered a "thinking officer" who was devoted to Sailors and creating an environment where everyone was treated equally – a legacy that can be seen today in the diversity of the fleet. His "one Navy" mentality reminds today's Sailors that taking care of our warfighters ensures the Navy remains tough, bold and ready. "To say the Navy was transformed by Adm. Zumwalt is an understatement,” said Vice Adm. Tom Rowden, commander, Naval Surface Forces during the ceremony. “Indeed, every leader on this stage and the great crew standing before us has benefited from Bud Zumwalt's passion to make the Navy even better. So today we welcome this revolutionary warship to the fleet. A ship that demonstrates daring design and cutting-edge capability. "On behalf of the U.S. Naval Surface Force, I proudly accept ownership of the Navy's newest ship to the fleet," Rowden said. Zumwaltmade her transit to San Diego, making several port visits along the way. Upon arrival in San Diego on Dec. 8, USS Zumwalt began installation of her combat systems, testing and evaluation, and operational integration with the fleet. Once fully integrated, Zumwalt's stealth, power and lethality will provide a vital link from the Navy's current needs to its future capabilities. *

Photo by PO1 Armando Gonzales

Photo by PO2 Ignacio Perez

to integrate emerging technologies and new capabilities as they are delivered to the fleet. USS Zumwalt embodies the legacy of warfighting excellence and innovation of Adm. Elmo R. Zumwalt Jr., a veteran of World War II and the conflicts in Korea and Vietnam. He exemplified honor, courage and commitment during 32 years of dedicated naval service. Believing it was his job to "modernize and humanize" the Navy, Zumwalt chose to embrace change and to lead it from within. "I witnessed as he [Zumwalt] transformed our Navy, one Z-gram at a time ... removing demeaning and abrasive regulations and moving to eliminate the scourge of racism and sexism from within our Navy," said Mabus. "Among many initiatives, he opened flight training to women and increased recruiting of underrepresented Americans. And, as has always been the case when we open opportunities in our Navy and Marine Corps, we got stronger." As the 19th chief of naval operations, Zumwalt’s embrace of innovation resulted in a number of successful new programs, including the Oliver Hazard Perry-class frigate, the Ohio-class ballistic missile submarine, and the F-14 Tomcat, all of which had lasting impacts on the warfighting readiness of the Navy. Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. John Richardson, also spoke at the ceremony, commenting on the significance of the ship's namesake. "Adm. Zumwalt, especially during his time as CNO, ensured that our institution lived by its values," said Richardson. "He was the 'The Sailor's Admiral,' looking at new ideas, acting to the limit of his authorities, and adjusting along the way to make his Navy ready for combat – but also with full cognizance of the impact on the Sailors that made up that Navy." Perhaps most importantly, Zumwalt was a social reformer who recognized the primary force-multiplier of the U.S.

"Sail this ship fast, treat her well and give her everything you’ve got. And if called upon to fight, fight hard and win.”

Photo by PO1 Nathan Laird

Photo by PO1 Nathan Laird

Photo by PO1 Nathan Laird

Photos from Zumwalt's commissioning



F-35 Integration on USS America Forges Path to the Future

Story From SURFPAC Public Affairs

Sailors use hand signals to direct an F-35B forward on the flight deck in preparation for launch



he Navy and Marine Corps team executed a comprehensive series of tests during October and November to evaluate and set standards for how the Marine Corps’ new F-35B Joint Strike Fighters will operate on the flight decks of amphibious ships at sea. The tests, also evaluated the fighters’ aircraftto-ship network interoperability in a fully operational setting. USS America (LHA 6), the large deck amphibious assault ship participating in the testing, was designed to carry a large, diverse complement of aircraft including the tilt-rotor MV-22 Osprey tiltrotor aircraft, the new F-35B

Lightning II fighter aircraft, and a mix of cargo and assault helicopters. For the past decade, fighter aircraft and amphibious forces have exemplified the Navy’s ability to project power ashore. Power projection from the sea is a unique and critical capability the Navy and Marine Corps team provides our nation. And while these tests and concept of employment are important milestones toward the future of the Marine Corps’ strike capability and ability to support forces ashore, these aircraft also present the Navy’s surface force with new options and untapped potential when it comes to sea control.

As threats and adversaries have evolved over the past decade, the Navy’s ability to control the sea has once again become a vital area of mission focus in support of our national security interests. “You can’t project power from seas you don’t control,” said Vice Adm. Tom Rowden, commander, Naval Surface Forces, in August. The Joint Strike Fighter, operating off the Navy’s carriers and large deck amphibious ships in the near future, has the potential to be used to support a critical mission set that it wasn’t originally intended to support – sea control. “The expeditionary surface fleet

MATERIAL READINESS Photo by Darin Russell

Photo by Lt. j.g. Maideline Sanchez

is increasing its combat capability exponentially with the integration of the F-35 into its already formidable arsenal,” said Rowden. The Surface Forces’ primary mission for this aircraft is to support amphibious operations – put Marines ashore and support the Marine Air-Ground Task Force. That said, we’ll focus on the aircraft’s future contributions to sea control. “Given the capabilities in the fifthgeneration fighters like the Joint Strike Fighter coming to the flight decks of our big-deck amphibs and given the capabilities in those fifthgeneration fighters, I think we need

to think differently about how we’re going to utilize our amphibious ships in the sea control fight as well,” Rowden told The National Interest in October. First, it’s important to understand what the aircraft can contribute to surface force operations, whether flying from the flight deck of an aircraft carrier or amphibious ship or from a shore-based airfield. Integration of the F-35 into the surface Navy has already begun, and it will dramatically alter how aircraft and ships pass data to each other to more effectively detect, track, and engage both airborne and ship threats over the horizon. In September at the White Sands Missile Range, a simulated Aegis ship engaged a low-flying cruise missile target with a Standard Missile 6 (SM-6), based solely on targeting data provided to the test ship by the sophisticated sensors of a Marine Corps F-35B. Consequently, Aegis Baseline 9 ships equipped with SM-6 missiles like the one used in this test will be able to accept fire control data from any variant of the F-35, extending the operational benefits to the entire joint force. This will allow for long range surface-to-air engagements when part of a traditional carrier strike group, as part of an upgunned expeditionary strike group, as part of a surface action group

(SAG), or even as part of a joint integrated fire control engagement with U.S. Air Force F-35As. This test was possible because of the F-35’s broad range of advanced sensors and data processing capability combined with the Navy Integrated Fire Control-Counter Air (NIFC-CA) concept being integrated in Aegis radar-equipped surface warships. NIFC-CA is a cooperative network that permits various naval platforms access to sensors and targeting data to detect, track and engage airborne threats beyond the horizon. And soon, with new enhanced missiles, these ships will also be able to engage surface threats over the horizon. “We are going to create a brand new capability,” said Secretary of Defense Ash Carter when describing the Navy’s success in altering the SM-6 missile for use as a high-speed ship killer. “We’re modifying the SM-6 so that, in addition to missile defense, it can also target enemy ships at sea at very long ranges.” The next avenue where the amphibious fleet has potential to further contribute to sea control is operationalizing the concept of an “up-gunned” expeditionary strike group (ESG) – a concept being promoted by Adm. Scott Swift, commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet. An up-gunned ESG is a

America conducts test operations with F-35B.



U.S. Navy Photo

Photo by PO3 Kyle Goldberg

Photo by Lance Cpl. Dana Beesley

America conducts test operations with F-35B.


compilation of a ship multiship amphibious ready group (ARG) and, depending on the mission, a varied combination of two to three destroyers or a cruiser and destroyers. The concept was rolled out by Swift during an April allhands call held on USS Momsen (DDG 92), part of the Pacific Surface Action Group (PACSAG), which was in Hawaii for a port visit. “I’m excited about the potential options you will explore as part of this three-ship SAG,” Swift told Sailors. Momsen, along with destroyers USS Decatur (DDG 73) and USS Spruance (DDG 111), put the first part of the concept into practice when they deployed as a SAG to the 7th Fleet area of operations shortly after the port visit. “What is really unique here with the PACSAG is that instead of sending independent deployers out . . . you’re deployed together,” Swift said. “It’s part of the effort you’ve been reading about called Distributed Lethality, meaning the combined lethality of a threeship SAG is much greater than an individual DDG [destroyer] – even as impressive as an individual DDG is.” The next phase of the concept is combining an ARG, embarked with F-35B aircraft, and a SAG together to fully empower an up-gunned ESG. The strengthened ESG


Finally, the amphibious force could increase its offensive and defensive capabilities – power projection and sea control – through the potential to put missiles on amphibious warships. The Navy and the Marine Corps are considering retrofitting the vertical launch systems (VLS) in its San Antonio class of amphibious assault ships. VLS would allow these ships to field larger offensive missiles. Once outfitted, these amphibious ships, operating with a standard ARG or up-gunned ESG, could exponentially increase their lethality. “The surface force is going on the offensive,” Rowden said. “We are looking at every ship as a potential offensive weapons platform. We are

Photo by Cpl. Thor Larson

will provide increased defensive capabilities and protection of the ESG while enabling incredible power projection ashore. The integrated F-35 can provide critical data back to the ESG for additional fire power ashore in support of the ground force when needed, as well as information to aid in the defense of ships at sea – vital nodes to Marines ashore. “I think this is going to revolutionize where we are with expeditionary strike groups,” said Swift. During the PACSAG deployment, two of the three ships had an opportunity to further Swift’s concept by conducting live exercises with the USS Bonhomme Richard

Photo by SN Joshua Samoluk

The Surface Force is going on the offensive. We are operating in new and novel ways, and we are putting potential adversaries on the defensive... operating them in new and novel ways, and we are putting potential adversaries on the defensive while making them work harder to find and target us,” he continued. “With these new capabilities and new employment options, the naval forces together can bring to bear the fullest extent of our combined combat power against an adversary.” A key component to that strategy is amphibious warships standing on the edge of exponentially adding new dimensions to the Navy’s arsenal and its ability to project power ashore, control the sea, and provide conventional deterrence via new advanced aircraft, new and enhanced missiles, and new weapons systems. With all the upcoming initiatives that will increase its offensive capability, it’s an opportune time to be in the Navy’s amphibious community and the surface force. *

Photo by Darin Russell

(BHR) ESG in October. The BHR ESG employed the capabilities of Spruance and Decatur to practice in-depth defense of the amphibious ships, including anti-submarine warfare and air defense scenarios, and live-fire events with the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit’s embarked helicopters. "… [T]his type of training with the BHR ESG will pave the way for the inaugural deployment of an ESG embarked with joint strike fighters and escorted by a SAG like this one, said Swift. "Being able to concentrate and disperse all of that capability based on the situation will provide commanders with tremendous operational flexibility." Within the next 24 months, the F-35B will make its first operational deployment with the first expeditionary SAG comprising a big-deck amphibious and a couple of “shooters” – cruisers or destroyers, according to the Pacific commander.

Photo by Darin Russell

-Vice Adm. Tom Rowden



U.S. Navy photo

Navy Tests Surface-to-Surface Missile for LCS Module Story From Program Executive Office for Littoral Combat Ships Public Affairs

USS Freedom (LCS 1), rear, and USS Independence (LCS 2) maneuver together during an exercise off the coast of Southern California. INSET: A Longbow Hellfire Missile rocket motor burns while being restrained.


Program Executive Office for Littoral Combat Ships (PEO LCS) successfully completed a restrained firing test of the Longbow Hellfire missile for the LCS Surface-to-Surface Missile Module (SSMM), the Navy announced Oct. 6. The Longbow Hellfire missile has been undergoing developmental testing for incorporation into the SSMM, part of the LCS surface warfare mission package. A major milestone demonstrating the SSMM missile launch module's ability to withstand heat and fire in the event of an unplanned rocket motor ignition was achieved at the Naval Surface Warfare Center, Dahlgren Division's Explosive Experimental Area. Prior to integrating and testing the Longbow Hellfire missile aboard an LCS, a series of tests must be accomplished to prove the safety of the system. During the test of the missile exhaust containment structure (MECS), a test designed to duct missile exhaust and fire through plenum exhaust chambers in the top of the SSMM module, one live Longbow Hellfire

missile with inert warhead and non-functional guidance section was fired but restrained in the launcher. As the missile's rocket motor burned, exhaust and flames ducted properly through the MECS plenums. "This critical test concludes another vital step in a series of efforts that will lead to the fielding of this tremendous capability to LCS and to the fleet," said Capt. Ted Zobel, program manager for the LCS Mission Module Program. The test verified the MECS could prevent ignition exhaust fire from escaping into other missile modules. Three mass-simulated Longbow Hellfire missiles and eight mass-simulated missiles with inert rocket motors were situated with the live missile to help evaluate the MECS's effectiveness. The Navy is planning to deploy the Longbow Hellfire missile capability aboard a LCS by December 2017. Structural test firing from a LCS is scheduled to occur by March 2017. *

MATERIAL READINESS Photo by PO2 Dennis Grube

Coordination, Collaboration, Alignment Help Makin Island ARG Set Record


he USS Makin Island (LHD 8) Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) sailed west in October with only 10 casualty reports (CASREPs) cumulatively – and USS Comstock (LSD 45) sailed with zero. This achievement is easily the best report in readiness for a deploying ARG within the last 10 years. When Vice Adm. Tom Rowden became commander, Naval Surface Forces in 2014, one of his first orders of business was to improve amphibious readiness. “We owe it to our Marine Corps brothers and sisters to provide ships fully mission ready for the fight,” said Rowden. To lead this effort, the office codes of N46 for Amphibious Current Readiness and N47 for CruiserDestroyer (CRUDES) Current Readiness were established. These two codes were immediately given the charge to work closely with the ships, staffs and maintenance teams to send warships fully ready for tasking to sea. “When a ship sails past [Lighted Whistle] Buoy San Diego (SD), they should be CASREP free,” ordered Rowden. Lighted Whistle Buoy SD is located a few nautical miles beyond the entrance of San Diego Bay.

Internally, N46 and N47 consist of ship-type desk officers, ship-class advocates and embedded Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) representatives who work closely together in shared office space to build the synergy necessary to not only resolve current individual CASREPs and issues, but to identify and resolve trending issues that may plague the class of ships as a whole. Externally, the N46/47 staff worked hard to foster healthy relationships with the rest of the headquarters staff, ships’ force, port engineers, regional maintenance centers, Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (SPAWAR) personnel, and NAVSEA codes in order to resolve more complex Category 3 (C3) CASREPs, which indicate major primary mission degradation, as well as the less severe C2 CASREPs. The commitment to maintain ready and capable amphibious forces had already produced proven results. In May 2015, the USS Essex (LHD 2) ARG deployed with 57 percent fewer CASREPs than the previous deploying ARG, and the following deploying ARG with even less. However, a full court press by the whole team, including the herculean

efforts of the Sailors aboard Makin Island, Comstock and USS Somerset (LPD 25), was applied to the Makin Island ARG – they were able to proudly sail west with only 10 CASREPs. Although specific records haven’t been located, no one in the community can remember an LSD (dock landing ship) ever deploying CASREP free! The success the N46/47 staff has contributed toward current readiness in the amphibious fleet resulted in the stand-up of office code N48, Oct. 1, to address littoral combat ship and mine countermeasures ship class readiness issues. The expectation is to take the collaborative victories with the amphibious force and apply them to the other two ship classes in order to reduce CASREPs and, ultimately, increase the surface fleet’s warfighting readiness. Although deploying with so few CASREPs is highly impressive and sets a significant mark in progress, Rowden asked the team for even more. “The goal is zero CASREPs,” said Rowden. “My team won’t rest until we can achieve the ultimate goal.” *

Makin Island ARG underway in the western Pacific Ocean.

Story From SURFPAC Public Affairs



The Expeditionary Sea Base, Strengthening Power at Sea Story by

Capt. Henry Stevens Strategic and Theater Sealift Program Manager (PMS 385), Program Executive Office (PEO), Ships



uring the. Expeditionary Warfare Conference in Norfolk, I discussed the versatility and impressive capabilities that the Expeditionary Sea Base (ESB) platform will bring to our Sailors and Marines in the Fleet. USNS Lewis B. Puller (T-ESB 3), the first of the ESBs, recently completed Initial Operating Test & Evaluation (IOT&E), bringing the Navy one step closer to augmenting its fleet with the enhanced capabilities of this platform. For those of you unfamiliar with the shipbuilding process, many first-of-class post-delivery test and trials milestones and IOT&E must be completed prior to handing a ship over to the fleet. Over the past 10 months, Lewis B. Puller, the Navy’s first-of-class ESB, has demonstrated exceptional capabilities and inherent flexibility in a series of in-port and at-sea events at Naval Operating Base Norfolk, Virginia, and the Virginia Capes Operating Area. These events included a demonstration of the underway replenishment fueling-at-sea system, launch and recovery of a 7m and 11m rigid hull inflatable boat (RHIB), and several cybersecurity-related events Throughout the course of post-delivery test and trials, Lewis B. Puller also conducted various airborne mine countermeasures simulated missions, which included launch and recovery of a Mk-105 magnetic influence mine sweeping sled, AN/AQS-24A mine hunting sonar system, AN/ASQ-232 Airborne Mine Neutralization System, Mk-103 mechanical mine, Mk-104 acoustic

mine and the AN/SPU-1W magnetic mine sweeping systems. The test period concluded in August with a final event required for all new construction ships to complete initial operational test and evaluation. The test was designed to demonstrate the ship’s full operational capabilities and determine the operational effectiveness and suitability of the platform. The ship will now prepare for a postshakedown availability, follow-on crew training, and testing of additional capabilities installed to support special operations forces, which will take place through the spring of 2017. The ESB is optimized to support a variety of maritime-based missions and is designed around four core capabilities: aviation facilities, berthing, equipment staging support, and command and control assets. ESBs can also be enhanced to meet special operation force missions through increased communications, aviation and unmanned aircraft system support. The ship has an aviation hangar and flight deck that includes four operating spots capable of landing MH53E equivalent helicopters, as well as accommodations, work spaces, and ordnance storage for embarked forces.It can also accomodate enhanced command, control, communications, computers, and intelligence capabilities to support embarked force mission planning and execution, and has a reconfigurable mission deck area to store embarked force equipment to include mine sleds, rigid hull inflatable boats, and the combatant craft assault. *



CHESAPEAKE BAY (Oct. 5, 2016) Sailors haul down the American flag aboard the amphibious transport dock ship USS Mesa Verde (LPD 19) at sunset while the ship loads food, first aid, and medical supplies. Mesa Verde is underway in preparation to support humanitarian assistance and disaster relief efforts in Haiti in response to Hurricane Matthew. (U.S. Navy photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Joshua M. Tolbert/Released)



Zumwalt Speaks! Selections from the Z-Grams Story by

John Desselle Naval History and Heritage Command Communication and Outreach Division

Photos courtesy of NHHC



lmo R. Zumwalt Jr., a U.S. Navy admiral whose naval career extended from World War II to the Vietnam War, was the youngest admiral to serve as chief of naval operations (CNO). As a young man, one of his greatest desires was to become a doctor as both his parents were. But in 1939 he was accepted into the United States Naval Academy at Annapolis, Maryland. In 1942, after graduating from the Academy, he joined the fleet where he served for 32 years. Zumwalt played a major role in U.S. military history, especially as CNO. His main focus was to reform Navy personnel policies in an effort to improve enlisted life and ease racial

tensions. He was a decorated war veteran, whose awards and medals include the Navy Distinguished Service Medal, Legion of Merit, Bronze Star with Valor device for heroic service, and the Navy Commendation Medal. Zumwalt retired from naval service July 1, 1974 aged 53, but continued to serve his Navy in other ways for the rest of his life. He died Jan. 2, 2000, at the age of 79 in Durham, North Carolina, and was laid to rest at the Naval Academy Cemetery in Annapolis. Here are few of his many Quotes or Z-grams with imagery to illustrate the power of his influence on the U.S. Navy:










"I heard a dive bomber attack from overhead. I looked through my spyglass and saw the red dots on the wings. That made me wonder, but I still couldn’t believe it until I saw some bombs falling.” -Ensign Davison


s the anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor nears threequarters of a century, a dwindling number of people are alive who remember the shock, horror and heroism that turned a Sunday morning into “a day of infamy.” However, thanks to the diligence and action reports of Sailors there that day, all transcribed in their own words, the details of what happened that day will keep the memory alive. For most people at Pearl Harbor, the day started as any other Sunday. They woke up, hit the head to brush their teeth, shave, etc. Others were in wardrooms or mess decks eating breakfast. Some were still asleep. Then, at 7:55 a.m., the Navy Yard Signal Tower telephoned the commander in chief, U.S. Pacific Command (CINCPAC): “ENEMY AIR RAID – NOT DRILL.” Almost simultaneously, Japanese torpedo planes attacked Battleship Row. Suddenly, everything changed. “About 8 o’clock I heard the air raid siren,” said Ensign G.S. Flannigan,

a member of the Naval Reserve on board the battleship Arizona (BB 39). “I was in the bunk room and everyone in the bunk room thought it was a joke to have an air raid on Sunday. Then I heard an explosion. I was undressed.” Elsewhere aboard Arizona, Ensign H.D. Davison had just sent the messenger of the watch to make the 8 o’clock reports to the captain. “Then I heard a dive bomber attack from overhead,” Davison said. “I looked through my spyglass and saw the red dots on the wings. That made me wonder, but I still couldn’t believe it until I saw some bombs falling.” The attack had begun. According to the CINCPAC report: “At 0755, Japanese dive bombers appeared over Hickam Field and Ford Island, and, bare seconds later, enemy torpedo planes and dive bombers swung in from various sectors to concentrate their attack on the heavy ships moored in Pearl Harbor. An estimated 18 planes engaged in the attack on

Hickam Field while approximately 9 dive bombers from out of the northeast bombed and strafed the Naval Air Station, concentrating particularly on Hangar No. 6 and the planes parked in that vicinity.” Amidst the chaos and confusion, CINCPAC sent a message to the rest of the U.S. Navy: “AIR RAID ON PEAR HARBOR X THIS IS NOT DRILL!” The missing “L” in Pearl makes apparent the stress felt by the command during the onslaught. An order familiar to all Sailors who’ve ever been to sea was heard booming through each ship in the Hawaiian harbor—“General quarters, general quarters. All hands man your battle stations.” Surrounding airfields were also targeted in tandem with the attack on Pearl. Japanese pilots bombed and strafed the Navy air bases at Ford Island and Kaneohe Bay, the Marine airfield at Ewa and the Army Air Corps fields at Bellows, Wheeler and Hickam. Within the first minutes of the

Story By

PO2 Eric Lockwood Naval History and Heritage Command

"Most of the men who were burned were unrecognizable. Shortly after the stretcher cases had been removed... the First Lieutenant ordered abandon ship. " -Ensign Miller



Views from during and after the attack on Pearl Harbor.

"All of our guns had ceased firing; the main, forecastle, and boat decks were burning; smoke obstructed a view of the foremast and the forward part of the ship." -Ensign Miller

All photos courtesy of NHHC unless otherwise noted.


attack seven of the eight battleships adjacent to Ford Island had taken bomb and/or torpedo hits. USS Pennsylvania (BB 38) was in dry dock at the yard. USS West Virginia (BB 48), USS Oklahoma (BB 37) and USS Arizona all sank quickly, while USS California (BB 44), USS Maryland (BB 46), USS Tennessee (BB 43) and USS Nevada (BB 36) suffered varying degrees of damage. Former battleship USS Utah (BB 41), which had been converted to a radio-controlled target ship (AG 16), was also sunk. Nevada managed to get underway despite a torpedo hit on her port bow. From nearly the start of the attack until about 8:30 a.m., she fought back. “Fire from [our] machine guns was almost continuous until 0820 when the attack slackened somewhat,” said Capt. F.W. Scanland, her commanding officer. Seizing the chance to get to sea, Nevada attempted to sail down the channel. However, before she could escape the harbor, a second round of aircraft appeared. Nevada being an easy target, the Japanese aviators

tried to finish her off and sink her in the middle of the channel— and thereby stop other ships from entering or leaving, too. But Nevada beached herself instead at Hospital Point. “Officers and members of the crew vary in their accounts of the number of enemy planes seen brought down by gun fire. It is probable that at least five planes were destroyed in the vicinity of the Nevada,” Scanland wrote in his action report. Several other ships also managed to clear the area. Probably the worst hit of all was the Arizona. Early on, a bomb from a dive bomber penetrated into her 14-inch powder magazine and exploded, resulting in a ravaging fire. “The oil fire sent up a great cloud of smoke and interfered with antiaircraft fire. The fire itself endangered the Tennessee, in the adjacent berth,” said the CINCPAC report. Ensign Jim Miller said in his own report, “Most of the men who were burned were unrecognizable. Shortly after the stretcher cases had


President Roosevelt asks Congress to to declare war, Dec. 8, 1941. Photo by PO1 Rebecca Wolfbrandt

been removed to the Solace motor launch, the first lieutenant ordered abandon ship. All of our guns had ceased firing; the main, forecastle, and boat decks were burning; smoke obstructed a view of the foremast and the forward part of the ship. All officers’ quarters aft were flooded and the quarterdeck forward was awash. “Men found the rafts difficult to paddle, and most of them crawled aboard motor launches or started swimming toward Ford Island. […] We picked up quite a few more men who were swimming toward the island. We made the officers’ landing at Ford Island, and all hands went ashore except the boat crew, Ensign Field, and the First Lieutenant. “I was told to remain in charge of the men on Ford Island. We went to the air raid shelter at the northeastern corner of the island. All injured men were sent to the air station hospital as fast as possible. The rest remained in the air raid shelter until the raid was clear.” The raid ended just under two hours after it began, and the toll

was steep. Aircraft losses were 188 destroyed and 159 damaged, the majority hit before they had a chance to take off. American dead numbered 2,403. There were 1,178 military and civilian wounded. Despite these heavy losses, the raid was almost a tactical failure for the Japanese. Two of the three aircraft carriers homeported at Pearl Harbor – Enterprise (CV 6) and Lexington (CV 2) — were out to sea and the third, Saratoga (CV 3), was undergoing an overhaul at Bremerton, Washington. The Japanese didn’t damage the shore-side facilities or fuel depots at the Pearl Harbor Naval Base, either, which played an important role in the Allied victory in World War II. Also, all but three of the ships sunk or damaged – Arizona, Oklahoma, and Utah — were later repaired and went on to fight against the Japanese and Germany. Arguably the greatest outcome of this tragedy was the unity it inspired in the nation. It motivated the American people to wholeheartedly commit to victory in the Second World War. *

A Pearl Harbor survivor pays his respects, with his family, to fallen service members during the attacks on Pearl Harbor and Oahu during a tour of the USS Arizona Memorial, Dec. 7, 2016



Indeed, There are ‘Ratcatchers’ Among Us… Story by

Vice Adm. Tom Rowden Commander, Naval Surface Forces

ABOVE: USS Nitze (DDG 94). This story was originally published on the USNI Blog



hose who follow naval history will note the recently marked 100th anniversary of the Battle of Jutland—a story masterfully told by Dr. Andrew Gordon in his book, Rules of the Game. Great Britain’s naval mastery was perceived as a birthright, but after what Gordon termed “the long, calm lee of Trafalgar,” he assessed that the Royal Navy had strayed away from its fighting past. The Royal Navy was undeniably full of what Gordon termed “regulators” – people who advanced within the established bureaucratic framework and were comfortable thinking inside the box – rather than the “ratcatchers” who were dearly needed in the prosecution of war. In the Navy’s “A Design for Maintaining Maritime Superiority” Adm. Richardson calls for “a Naval Force that produces leaders and teams who learn and adapt to achieve maximum possible performance, and who achieve and maintain high standards to be ready for decisive operations and combat.” In this call to action, in our own age and our Navy, ratcatchers are once again needed to safeguard our prosperity as a maritime nation. The news surrounding the anti-ship missile attacks on USS Mason (DDG 87) from armed militant groups in Yemen while Mason operated in international waters in the Red Sea and the Bab al-Mandeb was shocking. Our subsequent shift to the “active defense” by the USS Nitze (DDG 94), however, is a telling example of how Surface Forces operate where sea control and power projection are not guaranteed and a reminder that the

ability to maintain even temporary superiority will be contested. America truly is a maritime nation, and our prosperity is tied to our ability to operate freely in the maritime environment. Threats ranging from low-end piracy to well-armed non-state militant groups to the navies of high-end nation-states pose challenges that Surface Forces are prepared to counter and, should the call come, defeat. What many of us have learned from recent Distributed Lethality Task Force sponsored events is that while more lethal and distributed Surface Forces are designed to increase the offensive options available to the Joint Force Commander when the shooting starts, equally important is the ability to enhance conventional deterrence postures that limit an adversary’s options for escalation and buy time for leadership to make informed decisions on the further use of force. Simply stated, a more lethal and distributed Surface force gives an adversary a much more difficult operational problem with which it must contend. We’re seeing the direct results of the concerted effort to provide the right tactics, talent, training, and tools to detect, deceive, target, and destroy enemy forces. Moreover, this warfighting ethos – that of toughness and tactical mastery of sea control operations at and from the sea – is being ingrained in every one of the crews that fight our warships. The recent incidents in the Bab al-Mandeb involving


What is a 'Ratcatcher?'

By Andrew


Naval Historian


Mason and Nitze serve as an unambiguous reminder that adversaries who wish to challenge U.S. interests in strategically vital sea areas do in fact get a vote, and it is unlikely that all of the elements of the Navy’s Fleet architecture will be available when the shooting starts. Available assets are based on the day-to-day presence and persistence of the Surface Force, which means it must be prepared to absorb the first salvo and immediately go on the offensive in order to create conditions for the success of follow-on forces. As Under Secretary of the Navy Janine Davidson recently stated, “credible conventional deterrence can only be achieved through lethal forces distributed globally with the staying power and endurance to absorb or deliver the first punch.” To be sure, forward, visible, and ready Surface Forces backed by credible combat power is a cost imposition for which an adversary must consider in its decision calculus. The gravitational center of the Navy is controlling the sea in order to project more power, in more places. Recent events in the Red Sea highlight that we must get this right. And making sure we get things right is all about shaping the future, a future in which our men and women have the tools, the training, the tactics and the talent they need to fight and win against opponents who wish to challenge our interests and do us harm. Our Surface Forces are indeed forward, they are visible, and they are ready. In a world where the pace of operations has clearly never been higher, my main job as the Surface Forces Commander is to ensure all our surface warships are ready. I’ve also directed a redoubling of our efforts in pursuit of a renewed emphasis on sea control to ensure we maintain the advantage. To the ratcatchers in USS Mason and USS Nitze, and throughout the Surface Force, thank you for your fighting spirit. I am ever more hopeful for our future! *

ABOVE: USS Mason (DDG 87)

he term [ratcatcher] appears to have been in currency at the time of the First World War. It is best defined by the characteristics that a ratcatcher may (or may not) possess. A ratcatcher is prepared to take orders from the behavior of the enemy. They are eager to work from the boss's known objectives rather than from their last order. It helps if they have a boss who is tolerant of informed initiative and equips their subordinates to Adm. David Beatty as a 'ratcatcher.' take responsibility. To be a ratcatcher is to take risks with your (peacetime) career. But it is much harder to be a boss who nurtures ratcatchers under them. If you are minded to run your command as a jazz band (very necessary if there is any chance your communications links may be disrupted) you must educate your juniors in your doctrine and priorities, and you must lift from their shoulders the fear of making well-meaning mistakes that might be career-defining. They must know that any well-meant decision will not be seized upon as a means of thinning out the captains' list. In July 1940, the Australian light cruiser HMAS Sydney was patrolling 100 miles away from where she had been ordered. She intercepted and sank an Italian cruiser (Battle of Cape Spada). Adm. Cunningham asked Capt. John Collins why he had been in the wrong place. He said, "Sir, I was guided by providence." Cunningham replied, "Well, you may continue to take your orders from providence." That takes a big admiral! Adm. Sir John Jervis said virtually the same to Commodore Nelson after the Battle of Cape St. Vincent, when Nelson quit the British line without orders to cut off a Spanish escape. Others, among Jervis's juniors, thought Nelson should have been court-martialed. The real question for the boss of regulators and potential ratcatchers is: how would my forces continue to operate if my communications and computer linkages went down; if I, as conductor, couldn't talk to my ships for a while? *



Command Changes Carrier Strike Group 12

USS Ponce (AFSB 15)

Rear Adm. Kent Whalen, September 2016

Capt. Christopher Wells, November 2016

Carrier Strike Group 2

USS Pearl Harbor (LSD 52)

Littoral Combat Ship Squadron 1

USS Carter Hall (LSD 50)

USS Lassen (DDG 82)

Rear Adm. Kenneth Whitesell, November 2016 Cmdr. Theodore Essenfeld, September 2016

Capt. Jordy Harrison, September 2016

Cmdr. Timothy Carter, November 2016

USS O’Kane (DDG 77)

Cmdr. Colby Sherwood, September 2016

Cmdr. Tom Chekouras, September 2016

Capt. Patrick Hannifin, September 2016

Cmdr. James Lomax, September 2016

Tactical Air Control Squadron 11

USS Sampson (DDG 102)

USS Leyte Gulf (CG 55)

USS John McCain (DDG 56)

USS William P. Lawerence (DDG 110)

USS Arlington (LPD 24)

Capt. Daniel Sunvold, November 2016 40

Cmdr. Alfredo Sanchez, September 2016

Cmdr. Tim LaBenz, September 2016

Cmdr. Brandon Burkett, September 2016


USS Arleigh Burke (DDG 51)

Cmd. Jason Stepp, October 2016

USS Mitscher (DDG 57)

USS Laboon (DDG 58)

USS Scout (MCM 8)

USS Russell (DDG 59)

USS Carney (DDG 64)

USS Ardent (MCM 12)

USS Chung Hoon (DDG 93)

USS Forrest Sherman (DDG 98)

USS Dextrous (MCM 13)

Cmdr. Brett Oster, October 2016

Cmdr. Richard Robbins Jr., October 2016

Cmdr. Victor Sheldon, October 2016

Cmdr. Jason Labott, November 2016

Cmdr. Peter Halvorsen, November 2016

Cmdr. James Murdock, November 2016

Lt. Cmdr. Matthew Brown, October 2016

Lt. Cmdr. Samuel Hoard Jr., November 2016

Lt. Cmdr. Jeffrey Chewning, November 2016 41

Surface Warfare Magazine - Winter 2017  

Inside: Pacific Surface Action Group Integrates, Strengthens Force; USS Zumwalt Commissioning; F-35 Integration on USS America; Indeed, Ther...

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