By Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Codie L. Soule, Commander Task Force 70, Public Affairs
YOKOSUKA, Japan (NNS) — The forward-deployed aircraft-carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76), along with supporting Commander Task Force 70 units, began underway operations in the Indo-Pacific May 20.
Ronald Reagan and CTF 70 units routinely operate in the Indo-Pacific to promote a free and open Indo-Pacific region. For over 70 years, U.S. Pacific Fleet forces have been present and ready to respond in the Western Pacific to any contingency on behalf of friends, partners and allies.
“Forward presence truly matters. For more than seventy years, our forces have been present and ready to respond immediately on behalf of our friends and allies,” said Rear Adm. Karl Thomas, CTF 70. “The continued presence of Ronald Reagan and all our forward-deployed forces in the Indo-Pacific region, at sea where it matters most, promote security and stability which in turn drive peace and prosperity to benefit all regional countries.”
Throughout the year, CTF 70’s forward-deployed forces participate in cooperative deployments, multi-lateral exercises and unit level training to ensure the security and stability of the Indo-Pacific. Forward-deployed forces act as force multipliers for the Navy, which are able to generate the same presence in a matter of days with a forward-deployed ship that would take weeks to achieve from a U.S. based ship.
“Reagan Sailors worked hard to complete the most successful maintenance period the ship has ever seen,” said Capt. Pat Hannifin, Ronald Reagan’s Commanding Officer. “Reagan returns to the sea more lethal than ever, visibly renewing U.S. commitment to international norms in a free and open Indo-Pacific. We value our allies and partners in the region and are excited to support them again with our air wing and strike group from the sea.”
Ronald Reagan recently completed an extensive maintenance period which repaired and upgraded ship’s systems increasing the ship’s warfighting capabilities. As the only forward-deployed aircraft carrier, the ongoing presence of Ronald Reagan demonstrates the continued long-term U.S. investment in the Indo-Pacific. Ronald Reagan, forward-deployed to the Indo-Pacific from San Diego in the fall of 2015, replaced the aircraft carrier USS George Washington (CVN 73).
CTF 70 is a credible, forward-deployed force whose operations in the region preserve peace and prevent conflict throughout the Indo-Pacific. Ronald Reagan is America’s forward-deployed aircraft carrier providing combat-ready force projection to support and defend the collective maritime interests of the U.S. and its allies and partners in the Indo-Pacific.