First Deck Log of 2021 Plays Up One Crew's High Sea Saga of Piracy, Drug Patrols and COVID-19

First Deck Log of 2021 Plays Up One Crew’s High Sea Saga of Piracy, Drug Patrols and COVID-19

The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Ralph Johnson (DDG 114) sails towards the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS John S. McCain (DDG 56) while conducting routine underway operations. McCain is assigned to Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 15, the Navy’s largest forward-deployed DESRON and the U.S. 7th Fleet’s principal surface force. U.S. Navy Photo

The Navy’s annual tradition of writing its first deck log of the New Year in verse homed in on the global pandemic and how it affected the crew of one Pacific-based guided-missile destroyer. Read More

2 Japan-Based Destroyers Conduct Second Taiwan Strait Transit This Month

2 Japan-Based Destroyers Conduct Second Taiwan Strait Transit This Month

Guided-missile destroyer USS John S. McCain (DDG 56) conducts routine underway operations on Dec. 30, 2020, in the Taiwan Strait in support of stability and security for a free and open Indo-Pacific. Sea control is foundational for all other naval missions that support the Joint Force, including power projection. US Navy photo.

Two Japan-based destroyers conducted a Taiwan Strait transit today, in the second such transit in three weeks and the fourth overall mission during that time to push back against excessive maritime claims in the Pacific. Read More

VIDEO: Navy Expanding Use of Virtual Trainers for Surface Ship Crews

VIDEO: Navy Expanding Use of Virtual Trainers for Surface Ship Crews

The crew of USS Benfold (DDG-65) trains in the Combined Integrated Air and Missile Defense (IAMD)/Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Trainer (CIAT) in San Diego, Calif., on March 5, 2020. USNI News photo.

The surface navy continues to expand and evolve its use of virtual trainers, as it looks to train and certify individual sailors and watch teams ashore so they can make best use of their time at sea. Read More

Top Stories 2020: International Naval Operations

Top Stories 2020: International Naval Operations

Motor Tanker (M/T) Wila, a merchant vessel in international waters en-route to the UAE port of Khor Fakkan, in the Gulf of Oman, was boarded by armed Iranian personnel who fast roped aboard the ship from an Iranian Sea King helicopter as it hovered above on Aug. 12, 2020. US Navy Photo

This post is part of a series of stories looking back at the top naval news from 2020.

Like the U.S., international navies grappled with not only the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic but regional security concerns from China’s naval expansion and operations in the Pacific to Iranian and Russian operations in the Middle East. Read More

Top Stories 2020: Marine Corps Acquisition

Top Stories 2020: Marine Corps Acquisition

The Bell V-247 tiltrotor is an unmanned aerial system (UAS) that will combine the vertical lift capability of a helicopter with the speed and range of a conventional fixed-wing aircraft, and would provide long-endurance persistent expeditionary and surveillance and fires capabilities. The Marines had been considering this type of capability for their shipboard Group 5 UAS program, MUX, before the program was restructured in mid 2020. Bell Image

This post is part of a series of stories looking back at the top naval news from 2020.

The Marine Corps’ acquisition efforts this year focused on pursuing its modernization priorities for force redesign, while balancing years-long acquisition programs. Read More

Chinese Navy Expanding Bases Near South China Sea

Chinese Navy Expanding Bases Near South China Sea

The lead Chinese Type-075 preparing for sea trials. Photo via Weibo

The Chinese Navy, formally known as the PLAN (People’s Liberation Army Navy), conducted a live-fire exercise several days ago over the South China Sea utilizing a newly expanded naval base. Read More