Tag Archives: Oliver Hazard Perry-class

What could have been…

Below we see the Kidd-class destroyer USS Scott (DDG-995)— what the Spruances should have been– seen with four vessels of the Spanish Navy: the fleet tanker Marques de la Ensenada (A-11), the 16,700-ton aircraft carrier Principe de Asturias (R11), the Baleares-class frigate Asturias (F-74) and the Santa Maria-class frigate Reina Sofía (F84), 1 February 1992 on the lead up to Dragon Hammer ’92. If you note, the Iberian flattop has six Harriers on her deck along with an SH-3 and a UH-1.

U.S. Navy photo VIRIN: DN-ST-92-09810 by PH2 Jerry M. Ireland

All except the oiler were 1970s U.S. Navy designs, so you could characterize the task force as American by proxy. The Knox-class destroyer escort/fast frigate lines of Asturias are as evident as are the Oliver Hazard Perry-class FFG format of Reina Sofía.

As for Principe de Asturias, she sprung from the Zumwalt-era idea of the Sea Control Ship, a simple light carrier/through deck cruiser that could carry a composite squadron (ala the “Jeep Carriers” of WWII) of Marine AV-8A Harriers and Navy SH-3 Sea Kings to escort convoys, protect underway replenishment groups, and bust Soviet subs.

Sea control ship outline, Janes ’73

The entry of Guam as an “interim sea control ship” in the 1973-74 Jane’s

Zumwalt’s idea was to have as many as a dozen SCSs on hand to form hunter-killer groups to ensure, well, sea control, in the event of a big blowup leading to a Red Storm Rising style Battle of the Atlantic redux.

Come to think of it, we could use a dozen of the above groups today, just saying.

Manta tin cans in the Ionian Sea

You just can’t ask for a better international pack of greyhounds than this.

NATO Photo by FRAN WO Christian Valverde.

NATO Photo by FRAN WO Christian Valverde.

The image shows the Greek frigate Elli, French FREMM-class frigate FS Auvergne (D654), Royal Netherlands Navy De Zeven Provincien-class frigate HNLMS Evertsen (F805), Spanish Navy Alvaro de Bazan-class frigate Blas de Lezo (F-103), and the Turkish Navy’s Oliver Hazard Perry-class (Gabya-class in Turkish service) frigate TCG Gelibolu (F-493)— ex-USS Reid (FFG-30).

They are a part of NATO Advanced Anti Submarine Warfare (ASW) Exercise Dynamic Manta19 started off the cost of Sicily last week. Including Standing NATO Maritime Group 2, ships and aircraft from Canada, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Netherlands, Spain, Turkey, Great Britain, and the U.S. are involved. A total of 5 submarines, 9 ASW surface ships, 6 MPAs and 11 Rotary Wing Aircraft (Helicopters) are slated to participate in this exercise through early March.

IONIAN SEA, Feb 25, 2019. NATO warships sail in formation while performing Dynamic Manta's Photo exercise. Dynamic Manta is an NATO Maritime Command-led exercise designed to sharpen the anti-submarine warfare and anti-surface ship warfare skills of the participating units. Dynamic Manta 2019 will be conducted in vicinity of Italy from 25 February to 8 March and include participants from 10 NATO Allies . Canada, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Netherlands, Spain, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the United States provide in total 5 submarines, 9 ASW surface ships, 6 MPAs and 11 Rotary Wing Aircraft (Helicopters) to participate in this exercise. NATO Photo by FRAN WO Christian Valverde.

Pretty sweet photo spread here