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
USS Benfold (DD-65) is at anchor off Koror, Republic of Palau in 2012. US Navy Photo
Navy Secretary Kenneth Braithwaite visited Palau during a weeklong swing through the Pacific, making him the second high-ranking Defense Department official to visit to the small island nation in the last two months as the Second Island Chain is being eyed to play an even larger role in military plans and operations going forward. Read More
USS Chung-Hoon (DDG-93) transits the Pacific Ocean during Exercise Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) 2020 on Aug. 22, 2020. US Navy Photo
The U.S. Navy and partner nations have so far not encountered a Russian or Chinese maritime presence during the Rim of the Pacific 2020 exercise, according to a Navy official. Read More
U.S. Army 1st Lt. Alex Donahue discusses the importance of proper knots and rigging with Philippine soldiers during a subject matter expert exchange in support of Balikitan 2017 at Fort Ramon Magsaysay, Philippines on May 4, 2017. US Army Photo
KUALA LUMPUR — The Philippines government has now formally begun the process of terminating the Visiting Forces Agreement with the United States, Philippines Foreign Secretary Teodoro Locsin confirmed on Twitter: the U.S. Embassy in Manila has received notice, and the termination will take effect 180 days later. Read More
Marine Lance Cpl. David Lancheros shares his knowledge about the engagement process of a FIM-92 stinger missile with Philippine Airman 2nd class Sherwin Faoeranga during a subject matter expert exchange as part of exercise KAMANDAG 3 at Colonel Ernesto P. Ravina Air Base, Philippines on Oct. 9, 2019. US Marine Corps Photo
U.S. Marines are sharpening their amphibious skills right alongside amphibious assault vehicle crews of Philippine Marines and Japanese sea soldiers in a series of exercises that aim to tighten cooperation between the three nations. Read More
The littoral combat ship USS Montgomery (LCS-8) departs Naval Base San Diego to conduct routine operations and training in the Pacific Ocean. US Navy photo.
This post has been updated to include a comment from a Navy official regarding the timeline of the USS Montgomery deployment.
There is a Littoral Combat Ship operating forward on deployment for the first time in 19 months, with USS Montgomery (LCS-8) arriving in the Philippines over the weekend on its maiden deployment. Read More
Soldiers from the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force (JGSDF) Amphibious Rapid Deployment Brigade (ARDB) and Marines, attached to the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU), stand by in the well deck of the amphibious dock landing ship USS Ashland (LSD-48) Oct. 9, 2018. US Navy Photo
It was no ordinary beach assault when troops took off on amphibious assault vehicles from a U.S. Navy ship and raced ashore in a training exercise with U.S. Marines. Read More
Udaloy-class anti-submarine warfare destroyer Admiral Tributs arrives in Manilla. Philippine Navy Photo
As the U.S. relationship with the Philippines has come under rhetorical assault from President Rodrigo Duterte, Moscow has moved closer to Manila offering to sell arms and to start a bilateral military exercise program. Read More
President-elect Donald Trump and Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte
With an upset win President-elect Donald Trump has an opportunity to positively reset deteriorating U.S.-Philippines relations. The news of his victory was received with much elation by Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte. While the two executives may appear to be birds of a feather—certainly in their personalities, tactical use of strong language and statements of extreme policy—there are key differences that bring clear limits to the honeymoon period. Read More
A map of China’s shifting definition of the so-called Nine-Dash Line. US State Dept. Image
An Arbitral Tribunal is expected to rule this month on a South China Sea territorial dispute between China and the Philippines, and the U.S. should be prepared to respond to any Chinese reaction, a think tank panel said today. Read More