MARFOREUR/AF Commander visits HMS Queen Elizabeth, Senior U.K. Naval Leaders

The commander of U.S. Marine Corps Forces Europe and Africa, Maj. Gen. Stephen M. Neary, visited Royal Navy’s newest aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth in Portsmouth, United Kingdom, August 27, 2020.



By Staff Sgt. Brytani Musick U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Europe and Africa Portsmouth, United Kingdom Aug 27, 2020
6 photos: U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Europe
Photo 1 of 6: Maj. Gen. Stephen M. Neary, center, commander of U.S. Marine Corps Forces Europe and Africa, visits with members of the UK Royal Navy and Col. Doran, right, the senior U.S. national representative to Carrier Strike Group-21, aboard the HMS QNLZ in Portsmouth, England, August 27, 2020. Maj. Gen. Neary toured the ship to increase understanding of Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 211’s future operations with the UK’s Carrier Strike Group-21 during an upcoming deployment alongside their Royal Navy and Royal Marine Corps counterparts. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Staff Sgt. Brytani Musick)
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6 photos: U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Europe
Photo 2 of 6: Maj. Gen. Stephen M. Neary, right, the commander of U.S. Marine Forces Europe and Africa, tours the flight deck of the HMS Queen Elizabeth in Portsmouth, England, August 27, 2020. Maj. Gen. Neary toured the ship to increase understanding of Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 211’s future operations with UK’s Carrier Strike Group-21 during an upcoming deployment alongside their Royal Navy and Royal Marine Corps counterparts. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Staff Sgt. Brytani Musick)
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6 photos: U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Europe
Photo 3 of 6: Capt. Angus Essenhigh, right, commanding officer of HMS Queen Elizabeth, explains the flight deck layout to Maj. Gen. Stephen M. Neary, left, commander of U.S. Marine Corps Forces Europe and Africa, during a visit aboard the HMS Queen Elizabeth in Portsmouth, England, August 27, 2020. Maj. Gen. Neary toured the ship to increase understanding of Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 211’s future operations with the UK’s Carrier Strike Group-21 during an upcoming deployment alongside their Royal Navy and Royal Marine Corps counterparts. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Staff Sgt. Brytani Musick)
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6 photos: U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Europe
Photo 4 of 6: Capt. James Blackmore, right, the air wing commander of the UK Carrier Strike Group, delivers a tour for Maj. Gen. Stephen M. Neary, center, commander of U.S. Marine Forces Europe and Africa, during a visit aboard the HMS Queen Elizabeth in Portsmouth, England, August 27, 2020. Maj. Gen. Neary toured the ship to increase understanding of Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 211’s future operations with the UK’s Carrier Strike Group-21 during an upcoming deployment alongside their Royal Navy and Royal Marine Corps counterparts. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Staff Sgt. Brytani Musick)
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6 photos: U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Europe
Photo 5 of 6: Maj. Gen. Stephen M. Neary, front, the commander of U.S. Marine Forces Europe and Africa, tours the flight deck of the HMS Queen Elizabeth in Portsmouth, England, August 27, 2020. Maj. Gen. Neary toured the ship to increase understanding of Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 211’s future operations with UK’s Carrier Strike Group-21 during an upcoming deployment alongside their Royal Navy and Royal Marine Corps counterparts. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Staff Sgt. Brytani Musick)
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6 photos: U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Europe
Photo 6 of 6: Maj. Gen. Stephen M. Neary, second from right, commander of U.S. Marine Corps Forces Europe and Africa, visits with members of the Royal Marines including Maj. Gen. Matt Holmes, center, commandant general of the Royal Marines, in Portsmouth, United Kingdom, Aug. 27, 2020. Maj. Gen. Neary met with members of the UK Royal Marines following a tour of the HMS Queen Elizabeth to increase understanding of Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 211’s future operations with the UK’s Carrier Strike Group-21 during an upcoming deployment alongside their Royal Navy and Royal Marine Corps counterparts. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Staff Sgt. Brytani Musick)
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The commander of U.S. Marine Corps Forces Europe and Africa, Maj. Gen. Stephen M. Neary, visited Royal Navy’s newest aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth in Portsmouth, United Kingdom, August 27, 2020.

During the visit, Neary met with the carrier’s leadership and toured the HMS Queen Elizabeth to increase understanding of the U.S. Marine Corps’ future operations with the UK Carrier Strike Group. U.S. Marines from Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 211, along with approximately six F-35B aircraft, will support the ship’s inaugural deployment in 2021. VMFA-211 will work alongside the UK’s 617 squadron as Carrier Strike Group-21.

“This deployment shows the true span of U.S. Marine Corps operations across the theater,” said Neary. “The U.S. Marine Corps has a longstanding special relationship with the Royal Navy and the Royal Marines, so having us operate from the Queen Elizabeth is another milestone in the relationship.”

Neary also visited the Commandant General of the Royal Marines, Maj. Gen. Matt Holmes. During their visit they discussed the importance of integrating the U.S. Marines and Royal Marines on this deployment and future partnership opportunities.

The upcoming deployment of U.S. Marine Corps F-35Bs aboard the QNLZ highlights the amphibious application of Joint Strike Fighters from a UK carrier. This deployment demonstrates that U.S. and UK allied forces are more than interoperable – they are integrated.

“U.S. Forces are postured throughout the European theater, ready to defend the NATO alliance and to deter adversary activities,” Neary added. “It’s not just about us working with one country in one place – it’s about this alliance working across the theater in innovative ways.”