By U.S. Naval Forces Europe and Africa/ U.S. Sixth Fleet Public Affairs
The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Ross (DDG 71) arrived in Toulon, France for a scheduled port visit, Jan. 29.
Ross is currently on its 12th patrol in the U.S. Sixth Fleet area of operations. Toulon is the ship’s first port visit since starting patrol 12 in late December.
“This is a great demonstration of the strength of our bilateral security cooperation and the vitality of the NATO alliance,” said Jared Caplan, U.S. Embassy (Paris) spokesperson.
Upon completing its port visit in Toulon, the ship will integrate with the Charles de Gaulle carrier strike group (TF 473) for their upcoming CLEMENCEAU 22 deployment in the Mediterranean. This integration highlights the strength of the interoperability level between U.S. and French naval forces.
Bringing together allied resources, the French CSG demonstrates our shared ability of common projection and intervention. Several allied units will take part in TF 473 during CLEMENCEAU 22, protecting the TF alongside French units. This kind of cooperation develops high-levels of interoperability and responsiveness with “plug-and-fight” integration of allied assets. It enhances our interoperability and strengthens the exchanges with our European and NATO partners, essential to Europe security in this strategic area.
Ross’ integration into TF 473 highlights the continued interoperability and integration that allied carrier strike groups provide to the NATO alliance. While TF 473 operates in the Mediterranean with an integrated U.S. destroyer, Naval Striking and Support Forces NATO, working in close coordination with other commands throughout the alliance, is exercising command and control of a U.S. carrier strike group. The flexibility of command and control structures among allies supports the collective defense of Europe.
Operating from the High North through the Mediterranean and into the Black Sea highlights the capability and capacity Forward Deployed Naval Forces-Europe (FDNF-E) ships bring to the European theater. These inherently mobile, multi-mission capable ships routinely operate throughout the waters of Europe and Africa, from the Cape of Good Hope to the Arctic Circle, demonstrating their mastery of the maritime domain.
Ross is one of four U.S. Navy destroyers based at Naval Station Rota, Spain, and assigned to Commander Task Force 65 in support of NATO’s Integrated Air Missile Defense architecture.
U.S. Sixth Fleet, headquartered in Naples, Italy, conducts the full spectrum of joint and naval operations, often in concert with allied and interagency partners, in order to advance U.S. national interests and security and stability in Europe and Africa.