US Navy Nimitz Carrier Strike Group supports operations to reposition US forces within East Africa

According to information published by the U.S. Navy on December 28, 2020, The Nimitz Carrier Strike Group (CSG) has been providing operational and close air support to Joint Task Force – Quartz and Operation Octave Quartz (JTF-Q).
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 U.S. Navy USS Nimitz CVN-68 aircraft carrier provides operational and close air support to Joint Task Force – Quartz and Operation Octave Quartz (JTF-Q).  (Picture source U.S. Navy)

The U.S. Navy Nimitz aircraft carrier is the flagship of the Carrier Strike Group 11 (CSG-11 or CARSTRKGRU 11) which is under the command of Rear Admiral Kirk. A Carrier Strike Group (CSG) can be tasked to accomplish a variety of wartime missions, as well as missions other than war. During peacetime, a CSG typically conducts forward-presence operations to help shape the strategic environment, deter conflict, and build interoperability with allies.

The U.S. Navy deploys a regular rotation of CSG at an interval of six to eight months. The ships in the CSG are often disaggregated from the carrier, performing missions hundreds or even thousands of lmies away from the other ships.

The CSG-11 includes the USS Howrad (DDG 83) Arleigh Burke-class destroyer, the USS Shoup (DDG 86) Arleigh Burke-class destroyer, the USS Pinckney (DDG 91) Arleigh Burke-class destroyer, the USS Kidd (DDG 100) Arleigh Burke-class destroyer, the USS Princeton (CG 59) Ticonderoga-class guided missile cruiser, and the USS Lake Erie (CG 70) Ticonderoga-class guided missile cruiser.

The CSG-11 also includes the Carrier Air Wing 11 with the Elektronik Attack Squadron (VAQ) 142 "Gray Wolves" with EA-18G Growler aircraft, Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 146 with F/A-18E Super Hornet fighter aircraft, Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 147 with F/A-18E Super Hornet fighter aircraft, Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 154 with F/A-18F Super Hornet fighter aircraft, Marine Strike Fighter Squadron (VMFA) 323 with F/A-18C Hornet fighter aircraft, Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 121 with E-2D Hawkeye, Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 8 with MH-60S SeaHawk helicopter, Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 75 with MH-60R SeaHawk and Fleet Logistic Support Squadron (VRC) 30 with C-2A Greyhound.

For Joint Task Force – Quartz and Operation Octave Quartz (JTF-Q), supporting assets include the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz (CVN 68), embarked Carrier Air Wing 17, guided-missile cruisers USS Princeton (CG 59) and USS Philippine Sea (CG 58), and guided-missile destroyer USS Sterett (DDG 104). The Carrier Air Wing hosts more than 60 combat aircraft.

JTF-Q is responsible for the repositioning of U.S. forces within East Africa through Operation Octave Quartz. The mission of OOQ is to relocate U.S. DOD forces in Somalia to other East Africa operating locations while maintaining pressure on violent extremists and supporting partner forces.

Nimitz CSG also supported Operation Inherent Resolve, participated in Malabar 2020, and continues to operate in the 5th Fleet area of operations to demonstrate U.S. commitment to regional security and stability.

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