Story by Petty Officer 3rd Class Sydney Phoenix
The Legend-class national security cutter USCGC Hamilton (WMSL 753) crew conducted a series of operational exercises with the Georgian coast guard, May 2 to 3, 2021, in the Black Sea.
Hamilton crew conducted search and rescue patterns, simulated survivor rescue training, helicopter hoisting evolutions, approaches for towing, and ship communications with the crews of Georgian coast guard vessels Dioskuria (P 25) and Ochamchire (P 23). These maneuvers and operations enhanced the proficiency in specific mission areas familiar to both coast guards.
“The U.S. Coast Guard, along with the U.S. Navy, work closely with the Georgian coast guard on the maritime component of our robust security and defense partnership,” said Kelly Degnan, U.S. Ambassador to Georgia. “We welcome Coast Guard Cutter Hamilton to train with their counterparts in the Georgian coast guard, engage with community leaders, and above all, reaffirm the United States’ commitment to Georgia’s territorial integrity.”
The U.S. Coast Guard has been a consistent partner with European nations, strengthening and enforcing robust maritime governance. These exercises are designed to strengthen partnerships through interoperable capabilities and combined operations.
We continue our substantial military training cooperation, ship visits, and joint military exercises that aim to help Georgia improve its self-defense capabilities and interoperability with allied and partner forces.
“Hamilton was honored to conduct combined at-sea operations with the Georgian coast guard,” said Capt. Timothy Cronin, commanding officer of USCGC Hamilton (WMSL 753). “The U.S. Coast Guard values this partnership as we look to protect our shared interests by ensuring safe and lawful activity in the Black Sea.”
The U.S. Coast Guard has a deep partnership with Georgia and the Georgian coast guard, dating back to its initial establishment in the late 1990s. Through the interagency partnership with the Department of Defense, Department of Homeland Security, and Department of State, the U.S. Coast Guard guided and developed the Georgian coast guard into a fully operational and successful maritime force.
A resilient network of alliances and partnerships is the fabric of the free and open order. We build trust and interoperability with our allies and partners through combined exercises, operations, theater security cooperation, global health engagement, foreign internal defense, and capacity-building efforts.
Hamilton is the first U.S. Coast Guard cutter to visit the Black Sea since 2008. The last U.S. Coast Guard cutter to visit the Black Sea, USCGC Dallas (WHEC 716), sailed to the Black Sea twice, in 2008 and 1995.
Hamilton is the fourth national security cutter and is the fifth cutter named for the father of the U.S. Coast Guard – Alexander Hamilton, the first Secretary of the Treasury and advocate for the creation of the U.S. Revenue Cutter Service.
The U.S. Coast Guard remains operational during COVID-19, following all COVID-19 safety precautions and regulations.
The U.S. Coast Guard is conducting a routine deployment in the U.S. Sixth Fleet area of operations, working alongside allies, building maritime domain awareness, and sharing best practices with partner nation navies and coast guards.
U.S. Sixth Fleet, headquartered in Naples, Italy, conducts the full spectrum of joint and naval operations, often in concert with allied and interagency partners, to advance U.S. national interests and security and stability in Europe and Africa.