NATO exercise Dynamic Manta (DYMA21) began on Monday, 22 February 2021 off the Sicilian coast. Ships, submarines, as well as aircraft and personnel from eight Allied nations are converging in the Central Mediterranean Sea for anti-submarine warfare (ASW) and anti-surface warfare training. This year, French Carrier Strike Group Charles De Gaulle will also join the training along with five surface units from France, Belgium, Greece and the United States. Submarines from Greece, Italy, Turkey and the United States under NATO Submarine Command are joining surface ships from France, Greece, Italy, Spain and Turkey. Each surface ship will have the opportunity to conduct a variety of submarine warfare operations.
“The strength of NATO military forces is found in our command, control and communication structures, which can best be practiced during live exercises such as Dynamic Manta 2021. Developing and maintaining highly trained, ready forces that integrate seamlessly is the bedrock of our collective deterrence and defence. This live exercise will also further demonstrate that COVID-19 hasn’t changed NATO’s resilience and readiness. I appreciate the outstanding support of the Italian Navy and the force contributing nations to help achieve this objective in a collective way,” said Vice Admiral Keith Blount, Commander of NATO’s Allied Maritime Command.
Developing and maintaining highly trained, ready forces that integrate seamlessly is the bedrock of our collective deterrence and defence
To support the simulated multi-threat environment, maritime patrol aircrafts from France, Germany, Greece, Italy and the United States support the exercise. As the host nation, Italy is providing support in the Catania harbour, naval helicopter base in Catania, naval air station in Sigonella, as well as logistic support (refueling operations, medical assistance and personnel accommodation) from Augusta naval base. The aim of Dynamic Manta is to provide all participants with complex and challenging warfare training to enhance their interoperability and proficiency in anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare skills, with due regard to safety.
“Dynamic Manta is one of the two major Anti-submarine warfare exercises led every year by NATO Maritime Command. SNMG2, as a NATO Standing Force, usually participates in this type of exercises, focused not only on training and keeping the high readiness of the Force but also on enhancing cohesion and interoperability between force contributing nations, showing NATO presence and assuring Allies of the maritime commitment to collective defence,” said Rear Admiral Manuel Aguirre Alderguia, Commander of SNMG2.
The submarines will take turns hunting and being hunted, closely coordinating their efforts with the air and surface participants. Eight NATO Allies are participating: Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Spain, Turkey and the United States; with five surface ships (FRA, GRC, ITA, SPA, TUR); five submarines (GRC, ITA, TUR, USA); five maritime patrol aircrafts (FRA, GER, GRE, ITA, USA); and an aircraft carrier from France and its support ships from FRA, BEL, GRE and USA.