Commodore Steve Moorhouse has been appointed as the new commander of Combined Task Force 150 at a ceremony on Thursday.
Commodore Moorhouse will be replacing Commodore Mal Wise of the Royal Australian Navy who has led the task force over the past five months to record breaking results. In total drugs with an estimated street value of $2.2 billion have been seizes in 19 separate boarding operations. With Moorhouse describing it as a “fantastic tenure” upon taking command.
CTF 150 was established in 2002 during the global war on terror and is primarily focused on disrupting unlawful activities undertaken to finance and support terrorist operations. It primarily operates in the area known as the “Hash Highway” around the Gulf of Aden and the western Indian Ocean.
The multinational element of CTF will be well evidenced in Commodore Moorhouse’s command team with its complement of officers and sailors being made up from personnel provided by the Royal Canadian Navy, Royal New Zealand Navy and French Navy.
Commodore Moorhouse described their ambition over the next few months as to “not only seize opportunities but also create them”.
Commodore Moorhouse comes to the position with an impressive CV since joining the Fleet Air Arm in 1991 as a helicopter observer. He has seen operational service in the Middle East and Sierra Leone and commanded a number of Royal Navy vessels including the then flagship helicopter carrier HMS Ocean. This will be Commodore Moorhouse’s final deployment before taking up his designated posting as the inaugural seagoing captain of HMS Prince of Wales.
His American superior, Vice Admiral Scott Stearney, Commander Combined Maritime Forces, has praised his appointment saying that:
“Commodore Moorhouse is a highly respected Royal Navy officer, with the impressive credentials I require in a CMF task force commander.
With extensive sea duty experience, keen leadership and tactical foresight, I know that Commodore Moorhouse will lead CTF 150 with the same zeal as his predecessor.”