Med Top Trio

Lots of joint carrier ops lately, with the Brits, Japanese and 7th Fleet steaming a trio of flattops in the Pacific (HMS Queen Elizabeth, USS America, JS Ise) last August while a five-flattop formation was photographed just two weeks ago in the Philippine Sea to include the Abraham Lincoln and Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Groups along with Japan’s Hyuga (DDH 181) and two big phibs (America and Essex).

Well, looks like the Med now has its photo-ex as the Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group (HSTCSG) integrated with the French carrier Charles de Gaulle’s (R 91) Task Force 473 and Italian carrier Cavour (C-550) strike groups, “highlighting the strength of the maritime partnerships among the three nations,” as part of Neptune Strike 22/Clemenceau 22 over in Sixth Fleet’s neck of the woods.

And a Tico, (San Jacinto) made it as the point ship, still beautiful at age 34.

MEDITERRANEAN SEA – Elements of Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 8, the ITS Cavour Strike Group, and the Charles de Gaulle Carrier Strike Group (TF 473) transit the Mediterranean Sea in formation, Feb. 6, 2022. The Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group is on a scheduled deployment in the U.S. Sixth Fleet area of operations in support of naval operations to maintain maritime stability and security, and defend U.S., allied, and partner interests in Europe and Africa. Photo By: Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Bela Chambers. 220206-N-DH793-1568

In the below close-up, note that Charles de Gaulle has 20 Rafales on deck as well as a pair of Hawkeyes while Cavour looks to still be carrying her aging AV-8B Harriers.

MEDITERRANEAN SEA – From right to left, Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75), the Italian aircraft carrier ITS Cavour (C 550), and the French aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle (R 91) transit the Mediterranean Sea in formation, Feb. 6, 2022. The Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group is on a scheduled deployment in the U.S. Sixth Fleet area of operations in support of naval operations to maintain maritime stability and security, and defend U.S., allied, and partner interests in Europe and Africa. Photo By: Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Bela Chambers. 220206-N-DH793-1262.JPG

As noted by C6F:

Elements of the strike group include the staff of Carrier Strike Group 8; flagship USS Harry S. Truman; the nine squadrons of Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 1; the staff and guided-missile destroyers of Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 28, which include: USS Gonzalez (DDG 66), USS Bainbridge (DDG 96), USS Gravely (DDG 107); the Royal Norwegian Navy’s Fridtjof-Nansen class frigate HNoMS Fridtjof Nansen (F310) deployed as part of the Cooperative Deployment Program; and the Ticonderoga-class cruiser USS San Jacinto (CG 56). USS Cole (DDG 67) and USS Jason Dunham (DDG 109) are also part of the carrier strike group and currently supporting U.S. Fifth Fleet Area of Operations.

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