The Global deployment of a British Carrier Strrike Group is attracting attention in the United States.

Writing in Bloomberg, James Stavridis a former US. Navy officer, wrote that “the news that the UK will soon send a full-strength carrier strike force to sea for the first time since the Falklands War in 1982 reminds me how capable U.S. allies can be globally”.

Stavridis added:

“And given that the flotilla is deploying to the Indian and Pacific Oceans — with stops planned in India, Japan, Singapore and South Korea — it demonstrates the unity those allied nations are showing with the U.S. in its growing rivalry with China.”

He also said:

“Centered on the 60,000-ton aircraft carrier Queen Elizabeth, the strike group includes two frontline air-defense destroyers and two very capable antisubmarine frigates, as well as a nuclear submarine. The air wing is made up of fifth-generation Joint Strike Fighters built by the U.S. and a consortium of allies, including the British. Additionally, there is a very capable suite of helicopters onboard capable of attacking both surface ships and submarines, and carrying out long-range reconnaissance and targeting.”

You can read the entire article here.

What is the Carrier Strike Group doing?

HMS Queen Elizabeth’s Carrier Strike Group deployment will feature visits to India, Japan, Republic of Korea and Singapore.

According to the Ministry of Defence, on the 28-week deployment spanning 26,000 nautical miles the Carrier Strike Group will conduct engagements with Singapore, the Republic of Korea, Japan and India as part of the UK’s tilt towards the Indo-Pacific region.

Additionally, ‘CSG21’ will participate in NATO exercises such as Exercise Steadfast Defender, and provide support to NATO Operation Sea Guardian and maritime security operations in the Black Sea.

HMS Queen Elizabeth at sea with a mix of British and American jets.

Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said:

“When our Carrier Strike Group sets sail next month, it will be flying the flag for Global Britain – projecting our influence, signalling our power, engaging with our friends and reaffirming our commitment to addressing the security challenges of today and tomorrow. The entire nation can be proud of the dedicated men and women who for more than six months will demonstrate to the world that the UK is not stepping back but sailing forth to play an active role in shaping the international system of the 21st Century.”

The Carrier Strike Group.

Units from the Carrier Strike Group are expected to visit more than 40 countries and undertake over 70 engagements, say the Ministry of Defence.

“HMS Queen Elizabeth, the most powerful surface vessel in the Royal Navy’s history, will next month set sail as the flagship of a Carrier Strike Group. Joining her will be a surface fleet of Type 45 destroyers, HMS Defender and HMS Diamond, Type 23 anti-submarine frigates HMS Kent and HMS Richmond, and the Royal Fleet Auxiliary’s RFA Fort Victoria and RFA Tidespring. Deep below the surface, a Royal Navy Astute-class submarine will be deployed in support, armed with Tomahawk cruise missiles.

Providing a cutting edge on the carrier’s flight deck will be eight state-of-the-art RAF F-35B Lightning II fast jets. Alongside will be four Wildcat maritime attack helicopters, seven Merlin Mk2 anti-submarine helicopters and three Merlin Mk4 commando helicopters – the greatest quantity of helicopters assigned to a single UK Task Group in a decade. And supporting below deck will be a company of Royal Marines Commandos. A US Navy destroyer, a frigate from the Netherlands and a squadron of US Marine Corps F-35B jets are also fully integrated.”

British Carrier Strike Group heading to Pacific this year

Additional remarks from the statement explain the “Indo-Pacific tilt”.

“CSG21 will be a truly global deployment, from the North Atlantic to the Indo-Pacific. In Parliament, the Defence Secretary will explain how it will help achieve the UK’s goal for deeper engagement in the Indo-Pacific region in support of shared prosperity and regional stability – a stated aim of the Government’s recently published Integrated Review into foreign, defence, security and development policy.

The forthcoming deployment will bolster already deep defence partnerships in the region, where the UK is committed to a more enduring regional defence and security presence. Ships from the Carrier Strike Group will participate in Exercise Bersama Lima to mark the 50th anniversary of the Five Powers Defence Agreement between Malaysia, Singapore, Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom.

Engagements in Singapore, the Republic of Korea, Japan and India will provide the opportunity for strengthening our security relationships, tightening political ties and supporting our UK exports and International Trade agenda.”

The carrier and her escorts will head to Scotland shortly for Exercise Strike Warrior to test her capabilities before heading to the Asia-Pacific.

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farouk
farouk
5 months ago

I wonder if that stop off in India will still continue? to that end have all the crews been fully vaccinated in which to ensure low levels of transmissions of C19 if somebody picks up the bug

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
5 months ago

Great 👍

For once good news is being broadcast by someone on the ball.

It is very special that we can do this.

I wonder how much of a formed up group will go around PoW later in the year? 1 x T45, 1 x T23, 1 x Tide would still be a very impressive and useful flotilla.

I’m sure by the time the BBC pick it up it will be about leaks, engines that break down and the age (not equipment) of T23 – in fact all Tass need to do is rebroadcast the BBC version…….

Spencer
Spencer
5 months ago

Actually it would seem the BBC has already out out an article on the matter. Iirc it contains no ridicule of anything involved, not even a mention of the issues faced by either of the QE class earlier in their lives.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
5 months ago
Reply to  Spencer

I am genuinely amazed given how awful the BBC defence coverage generally is.

Let’s hope they have turned over a new leaf.

Nate m
Nate m
5 months ago
Reply to  Spencer

don’t get ur hopes up mate its the BBC. Thank goodness for people like gorge otherwise we would be in the dark ages in terms of civis knowing about military stuff.

Nate m
Nate m
5 months ago

i don’t think they have reported anything good about our military since the early cold war and maybe the success during the Falkland’s war. but then again it was probably about how some of the “black buck” missions got cancelled cuz of faulty Vulcans. but then again i wasn’t alive back then so can someone confirm this?

Rob
Rob
5 months ago

The USN should be very happy. When a UK (or French) carrier deploys that means a US carrier can be somewhere else. If we were really bright and integrated we’d have 2 UK, 2 French, 2 Japanese & 4 US QE class carriers with the US deploying 8 CVN. The QEs would do patrol and forward presence and the US CVNs would do the surge power projection.

BB85
BB85
5 months ago
Reply to  Rob

I’m sure Japan, S Korea and Japan will all be very interested in QE when she visits. Despite all the complaints they where actually a bargain especially when they could be been delivered for around 1 billion less had it not been for government interference.

farouk
farouk
5 months ago
Reply to  BB85

The Koreans are already starting on a carrier based on the British design:
https://www.navalnews.com/naval-news/2021/01/south-korea-officially-starts-lpx-ii-aircraft-carrier-program/

Last edited 5 months ago by farouk
TrevorH
TrevorH
5 months ago
Reply to  farouk

I take the point, but it just 40000 tonnes and based on an earlier ship. So not particularly based on a QE.

Darren
Darren
5 months ago
Reply to  BB85

Yes, I think with the delays and design changes from big to small that led to going back to the big ship amounted to closer to 2 billion that can be minused from the cost that is given. So cheap.

Joe16
Joe16
5 months ago
Reply to  Rob

Hopefully “somewhere else” will be in port getting a refit and taking a break- those USN carriers and their crews are worked hard!

David
David
5 months ago

http://www.dailymirror.lk/opinion/DEFENCE-DIPLOMACY-AUGMENTING-SRI-LANKAS-FOREIGN-POLICY/172-211013

China is reaching out and consolidating – she has already taken Hambantota Port from Sri Lanka and as an oppo MP said, we are giving away SL for Yuan.

Among ordinary Lankans there is still much love for the Brits and a port visit would send a powerful message to the populace but also the corrupt Govt. that Britain cares.

JohnG
JohnG
5 months ago

Yes I read this via ‘realcleardefence’. Can definitely recommend.

geoff
geoff
5 months ago

QE is 65 000 not 60 000 tons n’est-ce pas?

Gavin Gordon
Gavin Gordon
5 months ago

Tend to find the Americans more open to ‘including people in’ to their achievements, technical issues and general dits. Or maybe there are more avenues over there on social media. Meanwhile, looking forward to my hunger for how Strike Warrior goes down here being sated by the number of sausages that were consumed.

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
5 months ago
Reply to  Gavin Gordon

Don’t forget the classic..
Sausages consumed that if put end to end would reach from Portsmouth to X xxx.

Gavin Gordon
Gavin Gordon
5 months ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Damn. Was in Pompey this morning being Covid2’d. Now back in Sussex. That’d be enough for me.

James
James
5 months ago
Reply to  Gavin Gordon

Think they will have adjusted the menu onboard to cater for the Americans?

Gavin Gordon
Gavin Gordon
5 months ago
Reply to  James

They’re just here for the beer!

James
James
5 months ago

It’s just do embarrassing that first big deployment in more than a decade is not sovereign and that US F35 on board outnumber the Royal Navy own F35. The fleet escort numbers are low too hence the US destroyer and Dutch Frigate. Some will scream oh allied do that too bla bla but hey not on their first big global mission to send s message of strength out, plus they got sovereign capabilities and can do without foreign jets and escorts too.

Last edited 5 months ago by James
Hermes
Hermes
5 months ago
Reply to  James

I think you miss the biggest point.
For NATO, the biggest strength message is not what we can do alone.
It’s the fact that we can work together for the same goal.

Having 4 ships + 1 Nuclear Subs from the UK in the escort is the normal state.
The US and Dutch ships are a bonus to integrate allied ship to the carrier operation.

If fact, NATO can be represented like this:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=20LuSlZT4S4

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
5 months ago
Reply to  James

The article said the British F-35Bs were RAF meaning none were FAA. Could that be right?

Joe16
Joe16
5 months ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

The only operational F-35B squadron we have is 617 Squadron (17 and 207 squadrons are development and training units), so technically RAF. Although the pilots are (not 100% certain on this, but pretty sure) a mix of FAA and RAF. The next operational squadron to be stood up will be an FAA one, 809 NAS, so the RAF and FAA will have one each.

Joe16
Joe16
5 months ago
Reply to  James

Most USN CSGs sail with a variable number of escorts depending on the threat profile of the region they happen to be in at the time, and often augmented by NATO and other allies. But they don’t often go above 4-5 escorts (Ticonderogas and Burkes, with some of the Burkes fulfiling the non-optimised ASW role) and any extras are not always/generally USN ships. Subsea, no-one knows, but they’d not be sailing with more than one or two SSNs. The French CSG that sailed in February had 2 FREMM, 1 Horizon and an SSN, so fewer air defence platforms than we’re… Read more »

Dern
Dern
5 months ago

You’ve got to love the header image Bloomberg decided to go with…

Richard B
Richard B
5 months ago

It’s impossible to fault the USN and USMC for their support of CSG21. But in a perfect world, it would be great if USS Winston S. Churchill was part of the CSG, rather than USS The Sullivans. I’m sure that both are great ships with great crews, but sometimes names matter.

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
5 months ago

Is this really the first time we have deployed a Carrier Strike Group since 1982?

Pete
Pete
5 months ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

No. Massive exercises took place with Oman and others under the name Saiff Sareea.

2001 exercises included

of RAF assets)Royal NavyEditHMS Illustrious (R06) (aircraft carrier)HMS Ocean (L12) (landing platform helicopter)HMS Fearless (L10) (landing platform dock)HMS Cornwall (F99) (frigate)HMS Marlborough (F233) (frigate)HMS Monmouth (F235) (frigate)HMS Southampton (D90) (destroyer)HMS Nottingham (D91) (destroyer)HMS Inverness (M102) (minehunter)HMS Cattistock (M31) (minehunter)HMS Quorn (M41) (minehunter)HMS Walney (M104) (minehunter)HMS Beagle (A319) (survey vessel)HMS Roebuck (H130) (survey vessel)RFA Fort Victoria (replenishment ship)RFA Fort Rosalie (replenishment ship)RFA Sir Tristram (landing ship logistics)RFA Sir Galahad (landing ship logistics)RFA Sir Percivale (landing ship logistics)RFA Sir Bedivere (landing ship logistics)RFA Oakleaf (replenishment ship)FA2 Sea Harrier (strike fighter)Sea King HAS Mk6 (anti-submarine warfare helicopter)Sea King Mk4 (transport helicopter)Lynx Mk7 (utility helicopter)Sea King AEW Mk 2 (airborne early warning)

Patricia
Patricia
5 months ago

It is good to see the Royal Navy back in the Aircraft Carrier business!