NAPLES, Italy – Recently the Legend-class national security cutter USCGC Hamilton
(WMSL) 753) conducted operations in the Mediterranean Sea with the Italian Coast Guard and Italian Navy.
The operations were designed to increase interoperability as part of a regional effort to bolster maritime partnership with NATO allies.
“Working with the Italian Coast Guard and Italian Navy strengthens our maritime partnership and reinforces our shared values,” said Capt. Timothy Cronin, commanding officer of the USCGC Hamilton. “Our engagements with Italy during these maneuvers bring unity of effort in the maritime domain through interoperable capabilities and combined operations.”
More than half of regional economic activity relies on safe and lawful use of maritime security essential to economic development and sustainment. To further this objective, Hamilton participated in the search and rescue with the Italian Coast Guard in the Tyrrhenian Sea.
“Today, this meeting has represented an important and useful opportunity to improve our already strong relationship between the Italian and U.S. Coast Guard,” said Admiral Antonio Basile, Vice Commandant of the Italian Coast Guard.
Afterward, Hamilton transitioned to the Ionian Sea conducting cross deck flight operations with Italian Navy to practice daylight landing at sea. Exercises like these strengthen alliance interoperability, theater security and capacity-building efforts.
These operations follow a logistics visit to Naples, where crews met with Italian Coast Guard leadership to further enhance the U.S. and Italian military relationship.
“It was a pleasure to work alongside one of the strongest allies and share best practices to improve safety at sea,” said Petty Officer 1st class Thomas Hatfield. “We all learned a lot from each other and we welcome the opportunity to do it again in the future.”
The U.S. Coast Guard brings unique capabilities thanks to a wide suite of specialized maritime capabilities, competencies and authorities. Their mission set capabilities include search and rescue operations, counter drug enforcement, port, waterway and coastal security, and living marine preservation. The service’s multi-mission mandate as a law enforcement agency, regulatory agency, and a branch of the military, gives the Coast Guard a unique and unparalleled opportunity.
“Our organizations share several competencies in the strategic environment that are important in both the national and international realm. These include: search and rescue operations, marine environment protection, and control of the sea,” Basile said. “Soon we will usher in a new basis for our strong maritime bond, a memorandum of understanding that will highlight the mutual willingness to cooperate and to improve our expertise, through development of combined operations and interoperable capabilities.”
The U.S. Coast Guard is conducting a routine deployment in 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.
Hamilton is the fourth Legend-class national security cutter and is the fifth 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.