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Forward-deployed U.S. Naval forces conclude SWATT

27 January 2023

From Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Askia Collins, Commander, Task Force 71/Destroyer Squadron 15 Public Affairs

PHILIPPINE SEA - Ships from Commander, Task Force (CTF) 70 and Commander, Task Force (CTF) 71 completed the Surface Warfare Advanced Tactical Training (SWATT) exercise for 2023 in the Philippine Sea, Jan. 26.

Sailors fire the M2 .50 caliber machine gun aboard the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Chancellorsville (CG 62), during a live fire exercise, in the Philippine Sea, Jan 20. Chancellorsville is assigned to Commander, Task Force 70/Carrier Strike Group 5 underway preforming routine operations in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific.
Sailors fire the M2 .50 caliber machine gun aboard the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Chancellorsville (CG 62), during a live fire exercise, in the Philippine Sea, Jan 20. Chancellorsville is assigned to Commander, Task Force 70/Carrier Strike Group 5 underway preforming routine operations in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific.
Sailors fire the M2 .50 caliber machine gun aboard the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Chancellorsville (CG 62), during a live fire exercise, in the Philippine Sea, Jan 20. Chancellorsville is assigned to Commander, Task Force 70/Carrier Strike Group 5 underway preforming routine operations in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific.
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Sailors fire the M2 .50 caliber machine gun aboard the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Chancellorsville (CG 62), during a live fire exercise, in the Philippine Sea, Jan 20. Chancellorsville is assigned to Commander, Task Force 70/Carrier Strike Group 5 underway preforming routine operations in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific.
Photo By: Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Zachary Grooman
VIRIN: 230120-N-BN445-1540

SWATT is the premier U.S. Naval Surface Force advanced tactical training exercise. It is designed and developed to increase combat capability and interoperability between surface units by providing multi-ship, multi-platform, multi-warfare area training at sea. Forward Deployed Naval Forces-Japan (FDNF-J) SWATT 2023 was the first multi-international iteration of the exercise with participation from the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF).

"We are going to fight as a multi-national force, so it's only right that we train as a multi-national force", said Capt. Justin Harts, Deputy Commodore of CTF 71. “Exercises like FDNF-J SWATT 2023 are ways the United States builds deeper relationships and understanding with Allies and partners while simultaneously demonstrating a shared commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific region.”

From left to right, Fire Controlman 2nd Class Francisco Morales, from Long Beach, California, Chief Fire Controlman Wayne Whalen, from San Diego, and Fire Controlman 2nd Class James Yates, from Rome, New York, work on the Phalanx close-in weapons system (CIWS) aboard the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Chancellorsville (CG 62) in the Philippine Sea, Jan. 20. Chancellorsville is assigned to Commander, Task Force 70/Carrier Strike Group 5 underway preforming routine operations in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific.
From left to right, Fire Controlman 2nd Class Francisco Morales, from Long Beach, California, Chief Fire Controlman Wayne Whalen, from San Diego, and Fire Controlman 2nd Class James Yates, from Rome, New York, work on the Phalanx close-in weapons system (CIWS) aboard the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Chancellorsville (CG 62) in the Philippine Sea, Jan. 20. Chancellorsville is assigned to Commander, Task Force 70/Carrier Strike Group 5 underway preforming routine operations in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific.
From left to right, Fire Controlman 2nd Class Francisco Morales, from Long Beach, California, Chief Fire Controlman Wayne Whalen, from San Diego, and Fire Controlman 2nd Class James Yates, from Rome, New York, work on the Phalanx close-in weapons system (CIWS) aboard the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Chancellorsville (CG 62) in the Philippine Sea, Jan. 20. Chancellorsville is assigned to Commander, Task Force 70/Carrier Strike Group 5 underway preforming routine operations in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific.
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From left to right, Fire Controlman 2nd Class Francisco Morales, from Long Beach, California, Chief Fire Controlman Wayne Whalen, from San Diego, and Fire Controlman 2nd Class James Yates, from Rome, New York, work on the Phalanx close-in weapons system (CIWS) aboard the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Chancellorsville (CG 62) in the Philippine Sea, Jan. 20. Chancellorsville is assigned to Commander, Task Force 70/Carrier Strike Group 5 underway preforming routine operations in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific.
Photo By: Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Zachary Grooman
VIRIN: 230120-N-BN445-1269

The JMSDF ship that participated was destroyer JS Ashigara (DDG 178). Ashigara conducted several complex training events, including anti-submarine warfare, surface warfare and air defense exercises alongside U.S. Navy vessels.

"Ashigara brought incredible capability and energy to the exercise,” said Capt. Edward Angelinas, Commanding Officer of the Cruiser USS Chancellorsville and overall commander for FDNF-J SWATT 2023. “Since we are routinely sailing with Allies and partners in the Western Pacific, her presence made for a much more realistic and robust event".

Training scenarios included: integrated air and missile defense (IAMD), anti-submarine warfare / surface warfare (ASW/SUW), information warfare (IW), and complex live-fire events that included missile firings and gunnery exercises designed to prepare forward deployed surface forces for operations against threats in the Western Pacific.

"We improved our tactical capabilities and interoperability with the U.S. Navy through this exercise,” said Capt. Kiichiro Sakai, commanding officer of JS Ashigara. “In this way, the JMSDF and the U.S. Navy closely work together on a regular basis to maintain and strengthen our bilateral response capabilities to various contingencies."

Fire Controlman 2nd Class Francisco Morales, from Long Beach, California, left, and Chief Fire Controlman Wayne Whalen, from San Diego, California, work on the Phalanx close-in weapons system (CIWS) aboard the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Chancellorsville (CG 62) in the Philippine Sea, Jan. 20. Chancellorsville is assigned to Commander, Task Force 70/Carrier Strike Group 5 underway preforming routine operations in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific.
Fire Controlman 2nd Class Francisco Morales, from Long Beach, California, left, and Chief Fire Controlman Wayne Whalen, from San Diego, California, work on the Phalanx close-in weapons system (CIWS) aboard the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Chancellorsville (CG 62) in the Philippine Sea, Jan. 20. Chancellorsville is assigned to Commander, Task Force 70/Carrier Strike Group 5 underway preforming routine operations in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific.
Fire Controlman 2nd Class Francisco Morales, from Long Beach, California, left, and Chief Fire Controlman Wayne Whalen, from San Diego, California, work on the Phalanx close-in weapons system (CIWS) aboard the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Chancellorsville (CG 62) in the Philippine Sea, Jan. 20. Chancellorsville is assigned to Commander, Task Force 70/Carrier Strike Group 5 underway preforming routine operations in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific.
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Fire Controlman 2nd Class Francisco Morales, from Long Beach, California, left, and Chief Fire Controlman Wayne Whalen, from San Diego, California, work on the Phalanx close-in weapons system (CIWS) aboard the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Chancellorsville (CG 62) in the Philippine Sea, Jan. 20. Chancellorsville is assigned to Commander, Task Force 70/Carrier Strike Group 5 underway preforming routine operations in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific.
Photo By: Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Zachary Grooman
VIRIN: 230120-N-BN445-1131

Units involved in the exercise were: USS Chancellorsville (CG 62), USS Antietam (CG 54), USS Shiloh (CG 67), USS Rafael Peralta (DDG 115), USNS Washington Chambers (T-AKE 11), Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 51 (HSM 51), the JS Ashigara (DDG 178), and an embarked Sea Combat Commander element from Destroyer Squadron 15 (DESRON 15).

CTF 71/DESRON 15 is responsible for the readiness, tactical and administrative responsibilities for eight U.S. Navy Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyers which are: USS Barry (DDG 52), USS Benfold (DDG 65), USS Milius (DDG 69), USS Higgins (DDG 76), USS Howard (DDG 83), USS Dewey (DDG 105), USS Ralph Johnson (DDG 114), and USS Rafael Peralta (DDG 115).

From left to right, the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force Atago-class guided-missile destroyer JS Ashigara (DDG 178), the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Shiloh (CG 67), the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Rafael Peralta (DDG 115), the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Antietam (CG 54), the Lewis and Clark-class dry cargo ship USNS Washington Chambers (T-AKE 11) and the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Chancellorsville (CG 62), not pictured, steam in formation in the Philippine Sea, Jan 20. Chancellorsville is assigned to Commander, Task Force 70/Carrier Strike Group 5 underway preforming routine operations in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific.
From left to right, the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force Atago-class guided-missile destroyer JS Ashigara (DDG 178), the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Shiloh (CG 67), the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Rafael Peralta (DDG 115), the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Antietam (CG 54), the Lewis and Clark-class dry cargo ship USNS Washington Chambers (T-AKE 11) and the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Chancellorsville (CG 62), not pictured, steam in formation in the Philippine Sea, Jan 20. Chancellorsville is assigned to Commander, Task Force 70/Carrier Strike Group 5 underway preforming routine operations in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific.
From left to right, the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force Atago-class guided-missile destroyer JS Ashigara (DDG 178), the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Shiloh (CG 67), the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Rafael Peralta (DDG 115), the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Antietam (CG 54), the Lewis and Clark-class dry cargo ship USNS Washington Chambers (T-AKE 11) and the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Chancellorsville (CG 62), not pictured, steam in formation in the Philippine Sea, Jan 20. Chancellorsville is assigned to Commander, Task Force 70/Carrier Strike Group 5 underway preforming routine operations in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific.
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From left to right, the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force Atago-class guided-missile destroyer JS Ashigara (DDG 178), the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Shiloh (CG 67), the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Rafael Peralta (DDG 115), the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Antietam (CG 54), the Lewis and Clark-class dry cargo ship USNS Washington Chambers (T-AKE 11) and the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Chancellorsville (CG 62), not pictured, steam in formation in the Philippine Sea, Jan 20. Chancellorsville is assigned to Commander, Task Force 70/Carrier Strike Group 5 underway preforming routine operations in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific.
Photo By: Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Zachary Grooman
VIRIN: 230120-N-BN445-1467

U.S. 7th Fleet exercises operational control of its units through designated Task Forces or Task Groups. These groups are organized along domain and functional lines. CTF 71/DESRON 15 is the Navy’s largest forward-deployed DESRON and the U.S. 7th Fleet’s principle Surface Force. CTF 70 is theater strike warfare commander and theater air and missile defense commander.

7th Fleet is the U.S. Navy's largest forward-deployed numbered fleet, and routinely interacts and operates with 35 maritime nations in preserving a free and open Indo-Pacific region.

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