US, ROK Navies Conclude Foal Eagle Exercise
The U.S. and Republic of Korea (ROK) navies enhanced their combined and joint maritime capabilities after completing a series of drills and exercises ashore and at sea from March 8-31 in support of exercise Foal Eagle 2014.
Exercise Foal Eagle in an umbrella of regularly scheduled, annual exercises that are the culmination of many months of planning and based on realistic training scenarios.
The naval portion of the Foal Eagle exercises took place in international waters around South Korea and featured a full spectrum of joint maritime operations designed to strengthen the interoperability and teamwork between U.S. and ROK military forces.
This year’s drills marked the 53rd Foal Eagle exercise, which included participation of USS Lassen (DDG 82), USS Curtis Wilbur (DDG 54), USS Lake Erie (CG 70), USS Howard (DDG 83), USS Avenger (MCM 1), along with Korean Aegis destroyers ROKS Sejong the Great (DDG 991), ROKS Seoae Ryu (DDG 993), and ROKS Gwang Geon (DDH 978). Additionally, exercise Foal Eagle 2014 included the U.S. Navy’s P-8 Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft for its first training missions in Korea.
“Exercise Foal Eagle is important to the alliance because it brings units from other regions to Korea and allows them to work in a joint environment with our ROK navy counterparts, improving our joint fighting effectiveness,” said Cmdr. David Suchyta, director of operations for Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Korea. “The ROK and U.S. alliance is built on trust and that trust grows from working together. This exercise provided new generations of U.S. and ROK Sailors the opportunity to work together and build that trust.”
The training incorporated scenarios such as gunnery exercises, communication drills, dynamic ship maneuvers, logistical rehearsals, and liaison officer exchanges with the ROK navy.
Press Release, April 1, 2014; Image: Wikimedia