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  #1  
ישן 14-05-2010, 19:37
צלמית המשתמש של ralf
  ralf ralf אינו מחובר  
 
חבר מתאריך: 24.08.08
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הפריגטה הגרמנית FGS Hessen חלק מכוח משימה ימי לליווי נושאת מטוסים אמריקאית

לראשונה,פריגטה גרמנית FGS Hessen (מסוג Sachsen F124)תשתתף בכוח ימי לליווי נושאת המטוסים האמריקאית "USS Harry S. Truman". הפריגטה הגרמנית שנכנסה לשירות מבצעי בחיל הים הגרמני בשנת 2006, תספק הגנה אווירית לנושאת המטוסים ולקבוצת הליווי של הצי האמריקאי.




In a first, German frigate to sail under US command



For the first time, a German frigate has been integrated into a US Navy carrier group. It's another example of a joint military operation that boosts ties or tackles problems that might be beyond one nation's capability.




The sea today is quiet under a light, gray fog, but on the bridge of the German frigate Hessen, the loudspeaker rattles with sound of radio communications from the US warships training at the Norfolk Marine Naval Station nearby.


This time, however, the Germans aren't just observing, the Hessen, or "Warship 221" as its referred to over the radio, is training alongside the Americans.

It's an unusual mission for Lieutenant Stephan Tief, a navigation officer whose job is to keep the ship on course during this unusual mission, since the Hessen is under the command of the Americans.

The Hessen, one of the most modern frigates in the German navy, will accompany the American aircraft carrier "USS Harry S. Truman" on its voyage beginning this month across the Atlantic to the Mediterranean and the Horn of Africa.

Tief, who has been in the German navy for 15 years, says this first-of-its-kind mission for the ship involves a good deal of advance preparation.

"Naturally it's very important that everyone is well briefed and trained for a mission like this," he said.


Practice makes perfect




These kinds of practical exercises in preparation for a mission are essential when military forces from different countries are involved. The simulations highlight potential problems, said William Natter, a deputy under secretary of the US Navy, referring to an incident involving the frigate and an American helicopter during a refueling exercise
It wasn't until the aircraft landed on the fantail that we realized that the refueling nozzle for the (US) helicopter was on a different side than on the German helicopters," he said. The hose wasn't long enough.

In addition, crucial knowledge such as that fact that German ships run on diesel while the Americans power their vessels with jet fuel often comes to light only during practice sessions.

After the start of war in Iraq and the participation of the US-led "coalition of the willing," it became necessary to examine how in or out of sync US Navy and NATO procedures were, according to Dirk Gaertner, captain of the Hessen. But he says he is satisfied now that techniques and procedures are compatible, although the Americans had to get used to some of the ways the German Navy works.

For example, the Germans need to secure approval from their parliament in Berlin if during an escort exercise, an attack is ordered that goes beyond self-protection.

"The strict requirement of military forces to act within mandates does not exist within the United State," Gaertner said.

That restriction can initially lead to misunderstandings, especially with American soldiers in the middle range of the command structure.

"There are some shocked expressions, then the discussions start," said Gaertner. "When the positions are explained, things are really pretty easy to deal with since both sides know what the other's limits are."


Strengthening ties




A primary goal of this operation is to strengthen bilateral ties between the US and Germany, which, while traditionally strong, hit a patch of rough water during the US-led war in Iraq, which then-Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder strongly opposed.
Europe has been uneasy in the past about the way that the US projects military power. The US decision to turn down NATO offers of help in the Afghan war, and the US National Security Strategy under George W. Bush that included preemptive strikes and a more aggressive use of the American military fed this unease.




However, relations have improved markedly, particularly under Chancellor Angela Merkel.


In addition, military cooperative agreements around the world, even outside of NATO, have become more common as policymakers confront stubborn issues that appear to go beyond the problem-solving abilities, or stretched militaries, of single nations. For example, the EU has assembled a multinational armada of warships to tackle the growing problem of piracy.

In April, the United States and Brazil signed their first major military cooperation agreement in decades.

In Africa, a major joint military exercise with countries around the Sahara region is beginning as part of a US counter-terrorism program. While Operation Flintlock aims to improve the ability of the region's armed forces to work together, it also plays a diplomatic role.


It strengthens US-Africa ties and boosts the image of the US, important to Washington now more than ever as China has becomes a major player on the continent.

And within the NATO sphere, Russia's military is interested in cooperating with the alliance on missile defence, the head of the alliance's military committee said last Thursday after meetings in Brussels.

The Hessen mission under US command will give German sailors real-world operations experience in a carrier strike group. It will also be the first time the frigate, which went into service in 2006, will be providing air defense, its primary specialization, during a deployment.


Carrier escort


During the mission, the Hessen will be limited to supporting the Americans in air surveillance operations. Its radar can cover an area of some 500,000 square kilometers (193,000 square miles). It will be on the watch for smaller boats or airplanes, since the days in which the submarines of enemy nations posed mortal threats to sea-going vessels are largely a thing of the past.

Still, despite it size and power, an aircraft carrier is not invulnerable, especially when it comes to "close range" operations, according to Lieutenant Sven Siegismund.

Besides its own planes, carriers have no weapons that could serve as a defense against small, hostile airplanes or fast boats. And by the time an aircraft carrier got its aircraft in the air, serious damage could have already been inflicted.

"That's why we need frigates to sail alongside us and keep them at bay," he said.



Clean machine



While the Germans are limited to reconnaissance and the entire operation is being classified as a training exercise, the cooperation is useful, said the US Navy's Natter. Seeing how another navy operates allows the Americans to examine their own procedures with fresh eyes. While we live in the age of information, Natter said, the world and the oceans have not gotten any smaller. Good data, and a lot of it, is still essential for any naval mission.
"If we can put a ship off of one country's coast, and we can put another in the same battle group across over the horizon and then share what they see, the better," Natter said, adding that the integration of the Hessen in the US carrier strike group is "very important" and is just the first, he hopes, of further joint missions.

The crew members of "Warship 221" say they are proud to be a part of the USS Truman carrier strike group, even if the frigate has been taken on as a additional member of the ocean-going team and isn't replacing an American vessel.

Lieutenant Tief says the Americans have been impressed with the German crew and the ship itself, and not just because the Hessen is a remarkably clean and orderly ship.

"When it comes to organization, preparation and the ability to carry out tasks, we are really good," he said. "Absolutely."


de-world.de


Sachsen F124

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נערך לאחרונה ע"י ralf בתאריך 14-05-2010 בשעה 19:45.
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