PEARL HARBOR (NNS) --
Top military leaders from 10 partner nations held a press conference at Merry Point Landing on Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam (JBPHH) July 30, officially marking the end of the Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) 2016 exercise.
A total of 27 ships and 4 submarines from ten nations returned to JBPHH July 30-31 after successfully completing the exercise.
"RIMPAC has clearly achieved everything we set it up to do," said Vice Adm. Nora W. Tyson, commander, U.S. 3rd Fleet and commander, Combined Task Force. "We all met our training objectives and in doing so, as an international force, we have increased our interoperability, built upon our solid relationships, and improved the readiness, capability and capacity of the Pacific maritime forces."
The U.S. Pacific Fleet-event commenced June 23 in the waters around the Hawaiian Islands, involving more than 15,000 personnel from Australia, Norway, China, France, India, Peru, Thailand, Mexico and the United States.
The exercise was designed to increase the operational and tactical proficiency of participating units in a wide array of maritime operations by enhancing military-to-military relations and interoperability. With feedback from participating nations, individual reports for each participating nation will be given. Numerical scores from 1-100 will be given, expressed with the following grades. Please note the grades will be be influenced based upon the relative capabilities of the navy. An inexperienced navy obtaining an "Average" would be equivalent of a world class navy obtaining a "Poor", for example. [M] I use random.org to generate a number between 1-100.
- Poor: 1-20
- Below Expectations: 21-40
- Average: 41-60
- Exceeds Expectations: 61-80
- Excellent: 81+
United States: Exceeds Expectations (81) The USN, being the largest participant, performed very well. The USS Ronald Reagan and its airwing, gave the other nations ample opportunity to practice naval air warfare. Carrier operations in rough seas were no match for the carrier battlegroup, and the American submarines scored multiple kills during the war games.
Mexico: Exceeds Expectations (42) The Mexican Navy did not send any ships, to the disappointment of the RIMPAC organizers. However Mexican personnel served on other ships and in the HQ's on Pearl Harbor, where they did an admirable job.
Norway: Average (59) The ships sent by Norway performed as expected. The ships had no major issues. However Norway's Ula class submarines could barely compete with the ASW assets from other nations. The 30 year old boats failed to impress.
India: Exceeds Expectations (73) The Indian force, while small, surprised many observers with their skill and intuition. The squadron, led by INS Ranvijay, got high marks on every exercise, and demonstrated proficiency in naval warfare.
Malaysia: Exceeds Expectations (68) Despite sending only a small contingent of ships, the Malaysian performance was quite good. The crews showed skill in literal operations, although their blue-water capability left much to be desired. However this is not much of problem, since Malaysia has no blue-water ambition.
Thailand: Average (43) Like Mexico, the Thai's did not send any ships to RIMPAC. Instead their naval personnel learned valuable lessons on board the ships of other navies. While skillful, the Thai's did not have a large impact on the exercise.
France: Excellent (99) The France contingent was without a doubt the most skilled force in the exercise. Operating far from home, the French proved themselves to be worthy sailors in the rough Pacific Ocean. No conditions seemed to deter the skilled French pilots, operating from the Charles de Gaulle. The healthy escort also performed exceptionally well. France showed why it deserves a spot on the United Nations Security Council.
China: Exceeds Expectations (61) The second larges participant, the People's Liberation Army Navy, performed well during the excercise. It's large contingent of Type 022 Missile boats even gave the American and French crews some difficulty's. The Type 904 ships did good as well, although China's relative inexperience with blue water logistics showed. However during RIMPAC 2016 the Chinese showed that they were perfectly capable of operating far from home.
Australia: Exceeds Expectations (76) The Australian Task force performed well. The crew of the HMAS Canberra, participating in the ship's first RIMPAC, proved very capable in operations. US Marines and soldiers from the 2nd Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment, stormed beaches with the support of the Canberra. HMAS Darwin scored multiple kills on Norwegian submarines and even almost sunk a Virginia class SSN.
Peru: Below Expectations (26) The old 10,000 ton gun cruiser sent by Peru proved too old to be able to compete with the rest of the ships send. While valiant, the ships crew failed to get high marks during the exercises, simply because the old De Zeven Provinciën-class cruiser was too slow and low-tech. Peru's conduct was only rescued by the ambitious crew of the large ship.