BAHRAIN – The amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8), flagship of the Makin Island Amphibious Ready Group (ARG), pulled into Manama, Bahrain for a scheduled port visit in support of logistics and maintenance, Feb. 15-21.
While this was a working port visit, Sailors and Marines had a number of opportunities to rest and unwind in designated areas on the pier. These activities were planned and carried out in full compliance with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Department of Defense and host nation coronavirus (COVID-19) mitigation measures.
“Makin Island is focused on protecting Sailors and Marines and preventing the spread of the virus to U.S. forces, allies and partners, while maintaining warfighting readiness,” said Capt. Tom Ulmer, Makin Island commanding officer.
The ship was also able to utilize the Bahrain Navy Exchange’s “Downrange Program”, which allows personnel to purchase items such as food and incidentals while remaining in a quarantine status.
The Makin Island has been deployed since January in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations (AOO), along with amphibious transport docks USS San Diego (LPD 22) and USS Somerset (LPD 25), and the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit (15th MEU).
The Makin Island ARG and embarked 15th MEU have been operating in the Arabian Gulf since Jan. 22, providing support to regional and coalition partners, and to Operation Inherent Resolve (OIR).
“The Sailors and Marines of Makin Island ARG and 15th MEU should be proud of the work they have done while deployed,” Capt. Stewart Bateshansky, Makin Island ARG commodore.
“We are grateful to the Kingdom of Bahrain for our port call, and proud to demonstrate our commitment to the free flow of commerce, freedom of navigation, and regional maritime security while operating in 5th Fleet.”
The 5th Fleet AOO encompasses about 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 expanse is comprised of 20 countries and includes three chokepoints, critical to the free flow of global commerce.
GULF OF BAHRAIN (Feb. 15, 2021) – Amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8) pulls into Manama, Bahrain, during a scheduled port visit in support of logistics and maintenance, Feb. 15. The Makin Island Amphibious Ready Group and the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit are deployed to the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations in support of naval operations to ensure maritime stability and security in the Central Region, connecting the Mediterranean and Pacific through the western Indian Ocean and three strategic choke points. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Ethan Jaymes Morrow)