Bright Lights, Ancient Seas
The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Porter (DDG 78) entered the Black Sea on a routine patrol, January 28, 2021, while conducting multi-domain operations with a U.S. Navy P-8A aircraft from Patrol Squadron VP-46 and NATO Air Command aircraft E-3A Airborne Warning and Control System (AWACS).
Porter joins USS Donald Cook (DDG 75) and the Henry J. Kaiser-class underway replenishment oiler, USNS Laramie (T-AO-203) in the Black Sea to maintain maritime security alongside other NATO Allies and partners. The ships’ combined operations further strengthen interoperability and demonstrate resolve to Black Sea peace and security.
“Porter is excited to be back in the Black Sea demonstrating our continued commitment to security and stability in the region with our NATO Allies and partners,” said Cmdr. Thomas Ralston, commanding officer of Porter. “The crew and I look forward to enhancing our combined readiness and naval capability.”
Time-limited to just a 21-day stint due to the Montreux Convention, which bars warships belonging to non-riparian states from longer visits even under the invitation of Black Sea nations, the
Soviets Russians typically have a bit of indigestion about U.S. Navy ships bobbing around in what they regard largely as an inland sea of theirs, much akin to how we see Lake Superior. With that, expect Russian aircraft/vessels to come “unprofessionally” close to Porter and associates in the next couple of weeks.