A Marine Corps F-35B Joint Strike Fighter squadron will make history by deploying aboard the British Royal Navy's newest aircraft carrier -- the first deployment of its kind and one that could serve as a model for the new normal, a three-star general said.
Members of a Marine F-35B squadron are preparing to deploy on the aircraft carrier Queen Elizabeth in 2021. The deployment has long been in the works, Lt. Gen. Steven Rudder, head of Marine Corps aviation, said at the annual Sea-Air-Space conference just outside Washington, D.C.
"It's going to be a wonderful new way -- and I will offer, potentially a new norm -- of doing coalition combined allied operations with a maritime partner," Rudder said.
The U.S. defense secretary and U.K. defense minister agreed that the two militaries would deploy together aboard the new high-tech carrier when it first came online, he said. The aircraft carrier is the first of two in the United Kingdom's new Queen Elizabeth-class line, and its flight deck will include aircraft from the Royal Navy and U.S. Marine Corps, he said.
"Think about this carrier where you're going to have a squadron of U.K. F-35Bs; a [detachment] of U.S. Marine Corps F-35Bs. You're going to have helicopters ... as well as the Royal Marines aboard," Rudder said. (end of excerpt)
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