PHILLIPINE SEA (June 18, 2016) The Nimitz-class aircraft carriers USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) and USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Jake Greenberg / Released)
The USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) and USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) strike groups commenced dual carrier flight operations in the Philippine Sea on June 18 the US Navy announced.
“This is a great opportunity for us to train in a high end scenario.” said Rear Adm. John D. Alexander commander, Battle Force 7th Fleet and commander of Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 5. “We must take advantage of these opportunities to practice warfighting techniques that are required to prevail in modern naval operations.”
The White House has made the “Pivot to Asia” one of its primary foreign policy objectives. This dual carrier presence in the Philippine Sea is a show of force that is meant as both a check to an increasingly aggressive China and an opportunity to build relationships with friendly Asian countries.
Along with the Stennis and Reagan strike groups, the first temporary detachment of U.S. Navy EA-18G Growler airborne electronic attack aircraft arrived at Clark Air Base, Philippines, on June 15, for training with Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) FA-50 aircraft pilots. The VAQ-138 “Yellow Jackets” bring the US Navy’s newest electronic attack aircraft, the EA-18G “Growler” to work on interoperability and security cooperation with the Philippine Air Force.
Read more about the dual carrier ops in the Philippine Sea here