SILVERDALE, Wash. - Global Thunder 22 (GT22) concluded Nov. 10, after a week of command-post and field training that tested command, control and operational readiness.
GT22 is an annual training exercise designed to train and assess joint operational readiness across all of U.S. Strategic Command’s mission areas, with a specific focus on nuclear readiness and creating conditions for strategic deterrence against a variety of threats.
“Exercises like Global Thunder involve extensive planning and coordination, and provided a very valuable training opportunity for our team,” said Commander, Submarine Group (CSG) Nine Rear Adm. Rob Gaucher. “By continually testing our readiness for conflict we ensure that we remain a safe, secure, effective and ready strategic deterrent force.”
U.S. Strategic Command forces, including Sailors with CSG 9 and Commander, Task Group (CTG) 114.3, stood watch 24 hours a day, seven days a week, conducting operations to deter, detect and respond to attacks against the U.S. and its allies.
This was the first exercise since CSG 9 assumed duties as CTG 114.3, taking over the operational control of the Pacific Ballistic-Missile Nuclear-Powered Submarine (SSBN) Fleet. In the past, CSG 9 was only responsible for manning, training, and equipping SSBNs.
During the exercise, active duty and reserve Sailors from CSG 9, CTG 114.3, Commander Submarine Squadron 17, and Submarine Readiness Squadron 31 worked together to consolidate and onload 2,000 pounds of food and supplies to an underway nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarine. Force Protection details also conducted mobile logistics security training drills and qualifications.
CTG 114.3 Director of Maritime Operations Capt. Kelly Laing emphasized just how important the training was to the overall success of GT22 goals. “It is critical that our Sailors possess resilient and flexible logistic support capabilities coupled with strong force protection mechanisms to continue to maintain our strategic deterrent submarine forces at sea throughout any conflict.”