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U.S. 2nd Fleet, U.S. 6th Fleet, and II Marine Expeditionary Force Collaborate during Joint Staff Discussions

08 April 2021
NORFOLK, Va. – U.S. 2nd Fleet (C2F) staff met with U.S. 6th Fleet (C6F) and II Marine Expeditionary Force (II MEF) staffs virtually to discuss best practices for maritime effectiveness, Apr. 7.

Opening remarks were led by Vice Adm. Andrew Lewis, commander, U.S. 2nd Fleet, Vice Adm. Gene Black, commander, U.S. 6th Fleet, and Lt. Gen. Brian Beaudreault, commander, II Marine Expeditionary Force.

The senior leaders focused on high-end training and employment, and the capability of supporting the employment of forces, whether on the Western side of the Atlantic, the Eastern side of the Atlantic, or in the Arctic. The tri-lateral engagement strengthens security and promotes freedom across critical sea lanes in the Atlantic.

“Synchronization with our counterparts at both II MEF and Sixth Fleet is vital to seamless command and control across the vast Atlantic AOR,” said Lewis. “Whether American ships and Marines are ultimately deploying to the High North, the Eastern Med, or the Arabian Gulf, East Coast ships must first sail across the Atlantic and the relationship between our staffs is critical to success.”

The topics discussed among senior members of the respective fleet staffs included organizational structure, maritime operations center functionality, and naval integration.

“We have demonstrated our ability to operate alongside Second Fleet, integrating II MEF Marines at every step of our planning and operational execution, building our asymmetric advantage to defeat any maritime threat,” said Black. “When we operate together and with our NATO Allies, as one seamless force, we will achieve transatlantic maritime superiority.”

Discussions aimed to improve integration amongst the three commands to ensure a seamless trans-Atlantic bridge. The three commands are prepared to operate together in every domain, at all levels of warfare, from the tactical to the strategic, alongside NATO Allies and partners.

“II MEF is a maritime force inextricably linked to our Navy partners in Second and Sixth Fleets,” said Beaudreault. “Our continued discussions ensures our naval expeditionary team continues to leverage our collective capabilities and increase lethality across all domains.”

C2F exercises operational authorities over assigned ships, aircraft, and landing forces on the East Coast and the Atlantic.

C6F, headquartered in Naples, Italy, conducts the full spectrum of joint and naval operations, in concert with allied and interagency partners, in order to advance U.S. national interests and security and stability in Europe and Africa.

II MEF, headquartered in Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, deploys and is employed in support of commandant commander (CCDR) requirements for contingency response or major combat operations. Aligning with the 38th Commandant’s Planning Guidance, II MEF is continuing to grow its naval expeditionary force alongside C2F and C6F.

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