PHOTOS: Ronald Reagan Carrier Strike Group in th South China Sea

200814-N-KP021-0098 SOUTH CHINA SEA (August 14, 2020) An F/A-18E assigned to the “Dambusters” of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 195 launches off the flight deck of America’s only forward-deployed aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) while conducting operations in the South China Sea. Ronald Reagan, the flagship of Carrier Strike Group 5, provides a combat-ready force that protects and defends the United States, as well the collective maritime interests of its allies and partners in the Indo-Pacific region. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Codie L. Soule)

The Ronald Reagan Carrier Strike Group entered the South China Sea Friday and conducted maritime air defense operations in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific.

The strike group – USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76), Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 5, USS Antietam (CG 54), USS Mustin (DDG 89), and USS Rafael Peralta (DDG 115) – conducted flight operations with fixed and rotary wing aircraft, and high-end maritime stability operations and exercises.

Ronald Reagan and its embarked CVW-5, recently completed joint integrated training with USS Antietam (CG 54), Navy Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) 131, and the Air Force 35th Fighter Wing off the coast of Northern Japan.

200814-N-RF825-1045 SOUTH CHINA SEA (August 14, 2020) An MH-60R Seahawk assigned to the “Saberhawks” of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 77 lands on the flight deck of America’s only forward-deployed aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) while conducting operations in the South China Sea. Ronald Reagan, the flagship of Carrier Strike Group 5, provides a combat-ready force that protects and defends the United States, as well the collective maritime interests of its allies and partners in the Indo-Pacific region. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Jason Tarleton)

Integrated training included air-to-air operations, combat search and rescue drills, and air defense exercises to increase joint force capability to respond to regional contingencies and maintain warfighting readiness.

The Ronald Reagan Carrier Strike Group also recently integrated with an Air Force B-1B Lancer launching from Andersen Air Force Base, Guam. Reagan and the B-1 conducted Joint War at Sea training, enhancing joint readiness response capabilities.

200814-N-RF825-1039 SOUTH CHINA SEA (August 14, 2020) An F/A-18E assigned to the “Dambusters” of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 195 launches off the flight deck of America’s only forward-deployed aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) while conducting operations in the South China Sea. Ronald Reagan, the flagship of Carrier Strike Group 5, provides a combat-ready force that protects and defends the United States, as well the collective maritime interests of its allies and partners in the Indo-Pacific region. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Jason Tarleton)

“Integration with our joint partners is essential to ensuring joint force responsiveness and lethality, and maintaining a free and open Indo-Pacific,” said U.S. Navy CDR Joshua Fagan, Task Force 70 Air Operations Officer aboard the USS Ronald Reagan.

“The recent integrated training between our Carrier Strike Group and Air Force B-1s is the latest example of how we are continually working to stay synched with all of our joint partners and ready to respond to any contingencies throughout the region.”

200814-N-RF825-1025 SOUTH CHINA SEA (August 14, 2020) An F/A-18E assigned to the “Diamondbacks” of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 102 launches off the flight deck of America’s only forward-deployed aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) while conducting operations in the South China Sea. Ronald Reagan, the flagship of Carrier Strike Group 5, provides a combat-ready force that protects and defends the United States, as well the collective maritime interests of its allies and partners in the Indo-Pacific region. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Jason Tarleton)

The U.S. Navy regularly conducts operations and exercises with other U.S. military branches in the Indo-Pacific to build and maintain warfighting readiness that is responsive, flexible, and honors enduring commitments to mutual defense agreements with regional allies and partners.

Operations in the South China Sea continue to demonstrate enduring U.S. commitment to allies and partners and a cooperative approach to regional stability and freedom of the seas.

200814-N-KP021-0220 SOUTH CHINA SEA (August 14, 2020) An MH-60R Seahawk assigned to the “Saberhawks” of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 77 lifts off the flight deck of America’s only forward-deployed aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) while conducting operations in the South China Sea. Ronald Reagan, the flagship of Carrier Strike Group 5, provides a combat-ready force that protects and defends the United States, as well the collective maritime interests of its allies and partners in the Indo-Pacific region. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Codie L. Soule)

The Ronald Reagan Carrier Strike Group is the U.S. Navy’s only forward-deployed carrier strike group, comprised of the aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76), the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Antietam (CG 54), the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Mustin (DDG 89), and squadrons assigned to Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 5 embarked aboard Ronald Reagan.

The Ronald Reagan Carrier Strike Group is forward-deployed to the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific.

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