USS Blue Ridge (LCC 19) 

Official U.S. Navy file photo.
Amphibious Force 7th Fleet Kicks Off Fleet Synthetic Training 
By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Joshua Karsten  
YOKOSUKA, Japan – Amphibious Force 7th Fleet and Australian Military forces are conducting their annual Fleet Synthetic Training – Joint Exercise (FST-J) aboard the flagship USS Blue Ridge (LCC 19) April 23-26.

FST-J is a battle operation creating a virtual environment designed to simulate conflict scenarios. These scenarios consist of Amphibious Assault Landings, Non-Combat Evacuations, Carrier Air Strikes and Marine operations ashore.

Without having to operate at sea, the U.S. and Australian members encounter computer-generated environmental conditions, political state of affairs and foreign military provocations.

“Training with our coalition partners, prepares our amphibious force for future operations which are essential to maintain security and stability throughout the region, said Rear Adm. Jeffrey Harley, Commander, Amphibious Force Seventh Fleet.” Our Sailors and Marines looked forward to this challenging and realistic training that provided a wide range of scenarios to evaluate our Blue/Green team.”

Synthetic training pulls all critical training elements together such as intelligence and logistics, but mainly increasing the warfare commanders and operators’ decision making and testing pre-planned responses to many different battle situations.

“This exercise has been a great opportunity for the Australian Amphibious Task Group Staff to integrate into Amphibious Force Seventh Fleet,” said Australian Army Lt. Col. Anthony Birch, Chief of Staff Australian Amphibious Task Force. “We look forward to further our relations in future exercises and return the hospitality that we’ve been shown while onboard Blue Ridge.”

Amphibious Force 7th Fleet led by RDML Jeffrey Harley is based out of Okinawa, Japan and is embarked on Blue Ridge for the evaluation to certify their proficiency and war fighting readiness.
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