An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.


USS West Virginia visits Diego Garcia during extended deterrence patrol

07 December 2022

From By U.S. Strategic Command Public Affairs

The Ohio-class ballistic missile submarine USS West Virginia (SSBN 736) stopped in Diego Garcia for a brief port visit Oct. 25-31, 2022, during an extended deterrence patrol providing security and stability to our Allies.

USS West Virginia Conducts Port Visit at NSF Diego Garcia
Ohio-class ballistic-missile submarine USS West Virginia (SSBN-736) conducts a port visit at U.S. Navy Support Facility (NSF) Diego Garcia during a scheduled patrol. This port visit to Diego Garcia reflects the United States’ commitment to the Indo-Pacific region, and complements the many exercises, training, operations, and the other military cooperation activities conducted by Strategic Forces to ensure they are available and ready to operate around the globe at any time. West Virginia is one of six ballistic-missile submarines stationed at Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay, Georgia, and is capable of carrying up to 20 submarine –launched ballistic missiles with multiple warheads. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jan David De Luna Mercado)
USS West Virginia Conducts Port Visit at NSF Diego Garcia
221025-N-EJ241-1077
Ohio-class ballistic-missile submarine USS West Virginia (SSBN-736) conducts a port visit at U.S. Navy Support Facility (NSF) Diego Garcia during a scheduled patrol. This port visit to Diego Garcia reflects the United States’ commitment to the Indo-Pacific region, and complements the many exercises, training, operations, and the other military cooperation activities conducted by Strategic Forces to ensure they are available and ready to operate around the globe at any time. West Virginia is one of six ballistic-missile submarines stationed at Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay, Georgia, and is capable of carrying up to 20 submarine –launched ballistic missiles with multiple warheads. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jan David De Luna Mercado)
Photo By: Petty Officer 2nd Class Jan Davi
VIRIN: 221025-N-EJ241-1077

The Ohio-class ballistic missile submarine USS West Virginia (SSBN 736) stopped in Diego Garcia for a brief port visit Oct. 25-31, 2022, during an extended deterrence patrol providing security and stability to our Allies.

The visit, part of West Virginia's sustained deterrence operations in the United States Central Command and Indo-Pacific Command areas of responsibility, emphasizes the unmatched capabilities of a ballistic missile submarine to deter and, if necessary, respond from anywhere on the globe.

"Every operational plan rests on the assumption that nuclear deterrence is holding, and SSBNs like West Virginia are vital to a credible nuclear deterrence for the United States and our Allies," said Adm. Charles Richard, commander of U.S. Strategic Command.

USS West Virginia Conducts Port Visit at NSF Diego Garcia
Ohio-class ballistic-missile submarine USS West Virginia (SSBN-736) conducts a port visit at U.S. Navy Support Facility (NSF) Diego Garcia during a scheduled patrol. This port visit to Diego Garcia reflects the United States’ commitment to the Indo-Pacific region, and complements the many exercises, training, operations, and the other military cooperation activities conducted by Strategic Forces to ensure they are available and ready to operate around the globe at any time. West Virginia is one of six ballistic-missile submarines stationed at Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay, Georgia, and is capable of carrying up to 20 submarine –launched ballistic missiles with multiple warheads. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jan David De Luna Mercado)
USS West Virginia Conducts Port Visit at NSF Diego Garcia
221025-N-EJ241-1008
Ohio-class ballistic-missile submarine USS West Virginia (SSBN-736) conducts a port visit at U.S. Navy Support Facility (NSF) Diego Garcia during a scheduled patrol. This port visit to Diego Garcia reflects the United States’ commitment to the Indo-Pacific region, and complements the many exercises, training, operations, and the other military cooperation activities conducted by Strategic Forces to ensure they are available and ready to operate around the globe at any time. West Virginia is one of six ballistic-missile submarines stationed at Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay, Georgia, and is capable of carrying up to 20 submarine –launched ballistic missiles with multiple warheads. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jan David De Luna Mercado)
Photo By: Petty Officer 2nd Class Jan David De Luna Mercado
VIRIN: 221025-N-EJ241-1008

West Virginia is one of 14 Ohio-class SSBNs that make up the most survivable leg of the nuclear triad by serving as an undetectable launch platform for submarine-launched ballistic missiles. Before visiting Diego Garcia, West Virginia surfaced to embark Gen. Michael Kurilla, the commander of U.S. Central Command, in the Arabian Sea and participated in a joint, U.S. Strategic Command-directed communications exercise to validate emerging and innovative tactics in the Indian Ocean.

"West Virginia, like each of our ballistic missile submarines, is specifically designed for extended deterrent patrols," said Vice Adm. William Houston, commander of Naval Submarine Forces. "The stealth and response capability of these submarines combined with the crew's training make our SSBNs the most powerful warships in the world."

USS West Virginia Conducts Port Visit at NSF Diego Garcia
Ohio-class ballistic-missile submarine USS West Virginia (SSBN-736) conducts a port visit at U.S. Navy Support Facility (NSF) Diego Garcia during a scheduled patrol. This port visit to Diego Garcia reflects the United States’ commitment to the Indo-Pacific region, and complements the many exercises, training, operations, and the other military cooperation activities conducted by Strategic Forces to ensure they are available and ready to operate around the globe at any time. West Virginia is one of six ballistic-missile submarines stationed at Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay, Georgia, and is capable of carrying up to 20 submarine –launched ballistic missiles with multiple warheads. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jan David De Luna Mercado)
USS West Virginia Conducts Port Visit at NSF Diego Garcia
221025-N-EJ241-1019
Ohio-class ballistic-missile submarine USS West Virginia (SSBN-736) conducts a port visit at U.S. Navy Support Facility (NSF) Diego Garcia during a scheduled patrol. This port visit to Diego Garcia reflects the United States’ commitment to the Indo-Pacific region, and complements the many exercises, training, operations, and the other military cooperation activities conducted by Strategic Forces to ensure they are available and ready to operate around the globe at any time. West Virginia is one of six ballistic-missile submarines stationed at Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay, Georgia, and is capable of carrying up to 20 submarine –launched ballistic missiles with multiple warheads. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jan David De Luna Mercado)
Photo By: Petty Officer 2nd Class Jan David De Luna Mercado
VIRIN: 221025-N-EJ241-1019

The submarine also conducted a complete crew exchange in Diego Garcia and a subsequent replenishment at sea, highlighting the SSBN force's readiness and flexibility to remain on patrol for an extended period of time.

West Virginia is one of six ballistic-missile submarines stationed at Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay, Georgia, and can carry up to 20 submarine-launched ballistic missiles with multiple warheads.

Submarine Forces execute the Department of the Navy's strategic deterrence mission in and from the undersea domain. In addition to lending added capacity to naval forces, Submarine Forces, in particular, are expected to leverage those unique advantages that come with undersea concealment to permit operational, deterrent, and combat effects that the Navy and the nation could not otherwise achieve.

U.S. Strategic Command forces operate around the world, around the clock, to deter strategic attacks and employ forces as directed to guarantee the security of our Nation and our Allies. For more information about U.S. Strategic Command, visit https://www.stratcom.mil/.

Guidance-Card-Icon Dept-Exclusive-Card-Icon