U.S. Navy guided-missile destroyer USS Jason Dunham (DDG 109) partnered with Egyptian Navy frigate ENS Alexandria (F911) to conduct exercises in the Red Sea, Feb. 7, during International Maritime Exercise/Cutlass Express (IMX/CE) 2022. IMX/CE 2022 is the largest multinational training event in the Middle East, involving more than 60 nations and international organizations committed to enhancing partnerships and interoperability to strengthen maritime security and stability. In preparation for the exercises, Jason Dunham arrived in Egypt’s Berenice Naval Base for a pre-sail conference, on Feb. 6. The conference enabled the crew of Jason Dunham and Alexandria to meet and participate in operational briefs supported by Rear Adm. Walid Aly Attia, commanding officer of Berenice Naval Base.
“Conducting operations with our Egyptian partners was a great exercise in interoperability that allowed for planning teams from Jason Dunham to work directly with planning teams from the Alexandria,” said Lt. Katie Saporita, assistant operations officer aboard Jason Dunham. “It was a real treat to work alongside passionate officers from the U.S. and Egypt and solidifies the adage of ‘one team, one fight.”
The ships conducted maneuvering drills leading up to a passing exercise, an exercise in which multiple ships operate nearby, training together to improve knowledge, navigation, and interoperability. Lt. Cmdr. Kristen Eriksen, planning and tactics officer aboard the Jason Dunham, called the exercises a success. Jason Dunham was deployed to the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations at the time of the exercise, in support of naval operations to ensure maritime security and stability in the Middle East region. With increased interoperability, we can maintain stability and security while strengthening our relationships in the area
The U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations encompasses nearly 2.5 million square miles of water area and includes the Arabian Gulf, Gulf of Oman, Red Sea, and parts of the Indian Ocean. The region is comprised of 20 countries and includes three critical choke points at the Strait of Hormuz, the Suez Canal, and the Strait of Bab-al-Mandeb at the southern tip of Yemen.