03/22/2011 – Keen Sword is the 10th joint-bilateral field training exercise since 1986 involving Japan Self-Defense Forces (JSDF) and the U.S. military. The timing of this exercise also coincides with the 50th anniversary of the signing of the U.S.-Japan Cooperation and Security Treaty.
“Keen Sword 2010 is designed to allow the United States and Japan to practice and evaluate our coordination procedures so that we can effectively respond to the defense of Japan,” said Capt. David Lausman, commanding officer, George Washington. “Our alliance with Japan has lasted a half century, and we are committed to ensuring this friendship continues and remains effective in meeting the challenges of the 21st century.”
The exercise ran from Dec. 3-10 and involved units from the U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps, working side-by-side with their JSDF counterparts at military bases throughout mainland Japan, Okinawa and in the waters surrounding Japan.
Because of the exercise’s size and scope, officials from the United States and Japan have been working together for months making preparations. ”Planning for this exercise actually began more than a year ago,” said Rear Adm. Dan Cloyd, commander, Task Force 70. “
As the largest bilateral naval exercise in the world…, Keen Sword involves more than 10,500 personnel from the U.S. alone. Training events during Keen Sword 2010 included integrated air and missile defense, base security and force protection, search and rescue, close air support, live-fire training and maritime security and interdiction operations.
Credit: USN Visual Service
- In the first photo, the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force destroyer Ikazuchi maneuvers alongside the aircraft carrier USS George Washington.
- In the second photo, Master Chief Marty King, left, command master chief of the aircraft carrier USS George Washington, Master Chief Koji Himori, force master chief of the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force, and Master Chief Tanaka Naosuke, Escort Flotilla command master chief, observed operations as the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force destroyer Ikazuchi maneuvering into position alongside the aircraft carrier USS George Washington. The ships are practicing refueling at sea.
- The third photo shows the Military Sealift Command fleet replenishment oiler USNS Tippecanoe refuels the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force destroyers Ikazuchi and Kongo. Ikazuchi and Kongo are participating with the George Washington Carrier Strike Group in Keen Sword 2011 through Dec. 10.
- The fourth photo shows the Military Sealift Command fleet replenishment oiler USNS Tippecanoe refuelling the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force destroyers Ikazuchi and Kongo with the aircraft carrier USS George Washington in the background.
- The fifth photo shows aviation mechanics assigned to the Chargers of Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron 14 performing maintenance on the main rotor of an SH-60 Sea Hawk helicopter aboard the aircraft carrier USS George Washington.
- The final photo shows the guided-missile destroyer USS John McCain pulling alongside the aircraft carrier USS George Washington during a refueling at sea.