Megan Eckstein

About Megan Eckstein

Megan Eckstein is a staff writer for USNI News. She previously covered Congress for Defense Daily and the U.S. surface navy and U.S. amphibious operations as an associate editor for Inside the Navy.


Recent Posts By the Author


Marines See Future for Special Purpose MAGTFs Even As Ship Count Rises

Marines See Future for Special Purpose MAGTFs Even As Ship Count Rises

Landing Support Specialists with Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force-Crisis Response-Africa conduct helicopter support team drills with an MV-22B Osprey at Morón Air Base, Spain, Oct. 4, 2017. SPMAGTF-CR-AF deployed to conduct limited crises-response and theatre-security operation in Europe and North Africa. US Marine Corps photo.

THE PENTAGON – The Marine Corps may have expanded its use of ground-based Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Forces (SP-MAGTFs) in response to a shortage of amphibious ships to carry Marines around the globe, but Marine Corps leadership says the service is committed to these units even as the number of available amphibious ships is rising. Read More

Shanahan: Next Pentagon Budget May Trade New Weapons Development for Readiness

Shanahan: Next Pentagon Budget May Trade New Weapons Development for Readiness

The X-51A Waverider, shown here under the wing of a B-52 Stratobomber is set to demonstrate hypersonic flight. US Air Force Graphic

ARLINGTON, Va. – The Fiscal Year 2020 budget may slow down modernization efforts and research into next-generation weapons, like hypersonic missiles, but will still invest in growing the military force and boosting readiness for aircraft such as the F/A-18E/F Super Hornets, the deputy secretary of defense told reporters today. Read More

Foggo: U.S. Navy Forces in Europe Sufficient to Handle Threats -- But Only With Strong Collaboration With Allies

Foggo: U.S. Navy Forces in Europe Sufficient to Handle Threats — But Only With Strong Collaboration With Allies

USS Forrest Sherman (DDG-98) pulls into Reykjavik, Iceland on Sept. 22, 2018. US Navy Photo

REYKJAVIK, ICELAND – The head of naval forces in Europe is satisfied with the increased presence he’s seen in his theater this year, but he stressed that the U.S. will also have to rely on its allies and partners to counter a growing threat. Read More

Iceland Embracing Its Strategic Location By Supporting NATO Air Defense

Iceland Embracing Its Strategic Location By Supporting NATO Air Defense

A P-8A Poseidon aircraft assigned to Patrol Squadron (VP) 16, arrives in Keflavik, Iceland, for anti-submarine warfare training in April 2017. US Navy Photo

REYKJAVIK, ICELAND – Iceland may not have a navy, but the strategically located small nation is punching above its weight in terms of sea control and maritime safety in the increasingly important North Atlantic region, the head of U.S. naval forces in Europe said. Read More

U.S. Amphibs Return to Iceland After Rough Seas Cause Damage, Few Minor Injuries

U.S. Amphibs Return to Iceland After Rough Seas Cause Damage, Few Minor Injuries

The amphibious dock landing ship USS Gunston Hall (LSD 44) transits the Arabian Gulf as part of the Bataan Amphibious Ready Group in August 2014. US Navy photo.

Two of the three ships in the Iwo Jima Amphibious Ready Group had to return to port in Reykjavik, Iceland, after heavy seas en route to Norway injured a few sailors and caused damage to one ship’s well deck. Read More

USNI News Video: High North Exercise Tests Cold-Weather Skills of Navy, Marine Corps

USNI News Video: High North Exercise Tests Cold-Weather Skills of Navy, Marine Corps

US Marines with the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) are in Iceland preparing for NATO’s Exercise Trident Juncture 2018. The main phase of Trident Juncture will start in Norway on October 25. US Marine Corps Photo

ABOARD USS IWO JIMA, OFF THE COAST OF ICELAND – Today’s sailors and Marines have grown proficient at operating in the heat and sands of the Middle East, but the bitter cold and jagged lava rocks of Iceland in October is a new challenge to most of them. Read More

Truman Carrier Strike Group Operating North of Arctic Circle; First Time for US Navy Since 1991

Truman Carrier Strike Group Operating North of Arctic Circle; First Time for US Navy Since 1991

An F/A-18E Super Hornet, assigned to the “Sunliners” of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 81, launches from the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75). For the first time in nearly 30 years, a U.S. aircraft carrier has entered the Arctic Circle. Accompanied by select ships from Carrier Strike Group Eight (CSG- 8), Harry S. Truman traveled north to demonstrate the flexibility and toughness of U.S. naval forces through high-end warfare training with regional allies and partners. US Navy photo.

A U.S. aircraft carrier is operating in the Arctic Circle for the first time since the dissolution of the Soviet Union, as USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75) and escorts entered the Norwegian Sea today. Read More

NAVEUR: U.S. Must Invest in Undersea Tech to Keep Ahead of Russian Advances

NAVEUR: U.S. Must Invest in Undersea Tech to Keep Ahead of Russian Advances

Russian nuclear-powered submarine Kuzbass in 2016. Sputnik Photo

This post has been updated to correct the spelling of the Severodvinsk-class Russian submarine.

THE PENTAGON – Continued research and development into stealth technologies for U.S. submarines will be important as Russia continues research into undersea warfare and long-range missiles, the head of U.S. naval forces in Europe said on Friday. Read More

Foggo: U.S., NATO Naval Forces Pushing Back Against Russian Harassment

Foggo: U.S., NATO Naval Forces Pushing Back Against Russian Harassment

The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Ross (DDG 71), right, approaches the Lewis and Clark-class fleet replenishment oiler USNS Medgar Evers (T-AKE 13) and the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Arleigh Burke (DDG 51) for a replenishment-at-sea in the Mediterranean Sea, Oct. 6, 2018. Ross, forward-deployed to Rota, Spain, is on its seventh patrol in the U.S. 6th Fleet area of operations in support of U.S. national security interests Europe and Africa. US Navy photo.

THE PENTAGON – U.S. and NATO ships are focused on conducting freedom of navigation operations in Europe to push back against a Russia that is increasingly harassing commercial shipping and introducing new anti-access weapons into the theater, according to the head of U.S. naval forces in Europe. Read More

Trident Juncture Exercise Will Test NATO's Ability to Repel Invasion of an Ally

Trident Juncture Exercise Will Test NATO’s Ability to Repel Invasion of an Ally

Marines with Marine Rotational Force-Europe 18.1 prepare to bound across a road during a live-fire range at Giskas, Norway, Aug. 21, 2018. US Marine Corps Photo

THE PENTAGON – The upcoming Trident Juncture 2018 exercise will be the first opportunity to test out the premise of NATO’s new “Four Thirties” initiative – the idea that NATO may need to move a lot of people and platforms quickly to defend an ally whose sovereignty has been violated – the head of naval forces in Europe said today. Read More