Ships from the US Navy’s Kearsarge amphibious ready group (ARG) and embarked 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) entered the US 6th Fleet area of operations on December 25 for a regularly-scheduled deployment.
During its time in theater, the ARG/MEU team and its more than 4,500 sailors and marines will carry out a variety of missions, including maritime security operations, crisis response and theater security cooperation.
“The Kearsarge ARG is prepared to conduct a variety of missions, including maritime security operations, crisis response and theater security cooperation,” said Capt. Daniel Blackburn, commander of Amphibious Squadron (PHIBRON) 6. “This deployment will deepen operational relationships with other services, agencies, allies and partners who operate with the Navy to support our shared interests.”
The Kearsarge ARG consists of the amphibious assault ship USS Kearsarge (LHD 3), the amphibious transport dock ship USS Arlington (LPD 24), the dock landing ship USS Fort McHenry (LSD 43), Fleet Surgical Team (FST) 2 and FST 8, Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 26, Tactical Air Control Squadron 21, components of Naval Beach Group 2 and the embarked staff of Amphibious Squadron 6.
The 22nd MEU includes a command element, ground command element, aviation command element and logistics command element.
US 6th Fleet, headquartered in Naples, Italy, conducts the full spectrum of joint and naval operations, often in concert with allied and interagency partners, in Europe and Africa.