August 4, 2020 – USS Thomas Hudner (DDG 116) is joining members of the U.S. Coast Guard, Canadian Armed Forces, French Navy, and the Royal Danish Navy, to participate in the maritime component of Operation NANOOK-TUUGAALIK 2020.
Operation NANOOK is the Canadian Armed Forces’ signature northern operation comprised of a series of comprehensive, joint, interagency, and multinational activities designed to exercise the defense of Canada and security in the region. NANOOK-TUUGAALIK is the maritime component of the NANOOK series of deployments and training events and designed as a maritime presence operation and domain awareness of the seas in the Eastern Arctic.
“The U.S. is an Arctic nation, and this region is important to our national security, this is why we participate in events like Operation NANOOK,” said Vice Adm. Andrew Lewis, commander of U.S. 2nd Fleet. “A stable, rules-based order in the Arctic benefits all Arctic nations by facilitating economic development, fostering regional cooperation on shared challenges, and ensuring a stable, conflict-free Arctic.”
The United States is one of eight Arctic nations and the National Defense Strategy calls upon the military to increase its presence in the Arctic over the long term and to conduct joint operations with Arctic allies to strengthen situational awareness and information sharing.
“Operating together in or near Canada’s Arctic waters presents a mutually beneficial opportunity for allies to enhance their Arctic capabilities,” said Canadian Rear Adm. Steven Waddell, vice commander of U.S. 2nd Fleet. “The opportunity to work with allies and partners in challenging environments only makes us better as we develop and hone unique skillsets to improve the readiness of all participants.”
Operation NANOOK has taken place each year since 2007, normally during the months of August and September. Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, this iteration will be shorter than past years, with no planned port visits or community relations activities.
This year’s maritime component for Operation NANOOK includes the Royal Canadian Navy ships HMCS Glace Bay, HMCS Ville de Quebec, and MV Asterix; the U.S. Navy Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Thomas Hudner (DDG 116), the “Misfits” of Helicopter Maritime Strike (HSM) 46.2; the U.S. Coast Guard cutter USCGC Tahoma, French Navy coastal patrol vessel FS Fulmar, and the Royal Danish Navy frigate HDMS Triton.