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SWCCs Share Boarding Tactics with Fleet Sailors

U.S. Navy Special Warfare Combatant-craft Crewmen (SWCC) from Special Boat Team (SBT) 20 gave Sailors from USS Peleliu (LHA 5) and USS Dubuque (LPD 8) a three-week training course focusing on visit, board, search and seizure (VBSS) tactics Nov. 2-24 on Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek. VBSS is the term for maritime boarding actions designed to capture enemy vessels to combat terrorism, piracy and to conduct customs, safety and other inspections.

USS Rentz Assists Mariners in Distress

USS Rentz (FFG 46) responded to a distress call Nov. 20 from Motor Vessel Adnan Wahd, which was taking on water while at sea in the Central Arabian Gulf. M/V Adnan Wahd reported a hole in its hull and that the crew could not bring the flooding under control.

Essex Completes Successful ANNUALEX

The forward-deployed amphibious assault ship USS Essex (LHD 2) arrived in Okinawa Nov. 18 to offload the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) after successfully completing Annual Exercise (ANNUALEX) 21G. Essex Sailors and Combat Cargo Marines moved approximately 75 vehicles and 300 pieces of MEU cargo, as well as dozens of aircraft assigned to the 31st MEU's Aviation Combat Element (ACE), marking the end of the 21st edition of the exercise, which is designed to enhance naval interoperability between the U.S.

USS Chosin Rescues Three Yemeni Fishermen in the Gulf of Aden

USS Chosin (CG 65), the Combined Task Force (CTF) 151 flagship, rescued three stranded Yemeni fishermen in the Gulf of Aden Nov. 17. According to the fishermen, they were left stranded in the water after 12 suspected pirates hijacked their vessel. The fishermen also said that the pirates gave them an ultimatum to either jump overboard with only a wooden plank as a flotation device or be killed. After surviving for three days with only a few bottles of water, a passing merchant vessel spotted them in the water.

EODMU 5, MSRON 7 Sharpen Rappelling Skills

Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit (EODMU) 5 hosted training with Maritime Expeditionary Security Squadron (MSRON) 7 at a rappelling exercise Nov.

Bataan ARG/22nd MEU Departs 5th Fleet

The Bataan Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) and the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) officially departed 5th Fleet and entered 6th Fleet's Area of Operations when the multipurpose amphibious assault ship USS Bataan (LHD 5) transited the Suez Canal and entered into the Mediterranean Sea recently. The Bataan ARG, which had been conducting maritime security operations in 5th Fleet's Area of Operations, and the 22nd MEU, which served as the theater reserve force for U.S.

Ford Keel Laid for Future Carrier, Class

A keel-laying ceremony for the Navy's first Ford-class aircraft carrier, Gerald R. Ford, (CVN 78) was held at Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding, Newport News, Va. Nov. 14. The ceremony celebrated not only the building of a new class of ship, but the life of the ship's namesake, former President Gerald R. Ford. Susan Ford Bales, Ford's daughter, was the ship's sponsor. Bales' initials were welded into a metal plate that will be permanently affixed to the ship. "Ladies and gentlemen, as the ship's sponsor, and on behalf of President Gerald R. Ford," said Bales.

Navy, Marine forces train in Japanese-led exercise

In a display of flexibility, coordination and efficiency, more than 1,100 Marines, sailors, and assets assigned to the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, embarked aboard the forward-deployed amphibious assault ship USS Essex (LHD 2) and the forward-deployed dock landing ship USS Tortuga (LSD 46) at White Beach Naval Facility during an in-port reconfiguration, Nov. 9-11.

Essex ESG Begins Bilateral Exercise with JMSDF

Amphibious Squadron 11, USS Essex (LHD 2) and USS Tortuga (LSD 46) with embarked Marines got underway from White Beach Naval Facility in Okinawa, Japan, Nov. 12 for an exercise with the Japan Maritime Self Defense Force. Annual Exercise 21G (ANNUALEX) is a yearly bilateral training exercise for U.S.