JOINT BASE PEARL HARBOR-HICKAM, Hawaii (NNS) -- Amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6) welcomed Israeli Navy Rear Adm. Ido Ben-Moshe, head of naval operations, for a ship's tour, July 18, during the Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) 2018 exercise.
Rear Adm. Cedric Pringle, commander, Expeditionary Strike Group (ESG) 3, held an office call with Ben-Moshe, along with Israeli Navy Capt. Amir Gutman, Cmdr. Omer Segev, and Lt. Cmdr. Ran Koval followed by a tour, during which the officers had the opportunity to become familiarized with the LHD's capabilities.
The tour included a trip to the pilothouse, debark control, medical spaces and the ship's well deck. Each location, presented by a subject matter expert, highlighted different aspects and capabilities of a U.S. Navy amphibious assault ship.
While touring the ship, Pringle and Ben-Moshe discussed utilization of amphibious ships and their future in the world's navies. Both agreed on the importance of operators being involved when it comes to ship design.
"It takes so long to design and build a ship," said Pringle. "Therefore, it would be very beneficial to use the experience of those who have operated and maintained the ships, so they may collaborate with design engineers in creating a better ship. The engineers may have the technical knowledge, but they lack the experience that Sailors have to make those designs practical."
Ben-Moshe concurred, stating that the Israeli Navy has been incorporating similar ideas when designing and building their ships in order to make them more effective for the user.
"In Israeli ships, you will find that it's not the engineers who control the design, but the sailors," said Ben-Moshe. "For example, in order to build a bridge, you must have been working on the bridge for a while. You can't do it just from plans as an engineer."
The tour concluded at the quarterdeck, where Ben-Moshe presented Pringle with a commemorative challenge coin.
Bonhomme Richard recently completed its transition to San Diego as part of a homeport change, where it is scheduled to undergo upgrades to operate the F-35B Lightning II. Bonhomme Richard is currently serving as the Combined Task Force (CTF) 176 flagship during RIMPAC 2018. RIMPAC is a biennial, multinational exercise designed to strengthen operational readiness and improve multinational interoperability.
Twenty-five nations, 46 ships, five submarines, and more than 200 aircraft and 25,000 personnel are participating in RIMPAC from June 27 to Aug. 2 in and around the Hawaiian Islands and Southern California. The world's largest international maritime exercise, RIMPAC provides a unique training opportunity while fostering and sustaining cooperative relationships among participants critical to ensuring the safety of sea lanes and security on the world's oceans. RIMPAC 2018 is the 26th exercise in the series that began in 1971.
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