Tuesday, April 14, 2015
Super Carrier: Deepening the U.S. - Israel partnership on the high seas
A group of seven Israeli Defense Forces officers, led by Maj. Gen. Yoav Har-Even, visited the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) in the Mediterranean off the coast of Sicily last week, for a day of familiarization and discussions with American naval personnel. During the visit the officers had the opportunity to observe flight and maritime operations from the deck of the carrier and receive a brief on how Sailors organize, direct, and move aircraft around the four-and-a-half acre flight deck, as well as a brief on the ship’s navigational systems. They also learned about the operations of the ship, the flight squadrons, and the Carrier Strike Group. The activities included an up-close view of flight operations such as catapult launches, an in-air refueling demonstration, arrested landings, search and rescue operations, and a tour of the ships vast aircraft hangars, flight squadrons, operation center, bridge, and flight control tower. The purpose of the visit was to demonstrate the capabilities and firepower of USS Theodor Roosevelt and the TR Carrier Strike Group and to support cooperation between the U.S. and Israeli navies, as well as ensuring interoperability between the U.S. and their Israeli partners. Such visits are a means of sustaining the U.S.’s long-standing alliance with Israel. The group, which also included officers from the Cypriot military, was hosted by the ship’s commanding officer, Capt. Daniel C. Grieco, and the commander of the Carrier Strike Group Rear Adm. Andrew Lewis.