PHL Navy operates at par with modern ‘RIMPAC’ counterparts

Despite lacking modern ships and weapons, the Philippine Navy (PN) has proven itself capable of operating at par with more modern partners during the recently-concluded “Rim of the Pacific” (RIMPAC) exercises in Hawaii.

“It (the exercise) also validated the age-old principle that it’s always the men behind the guns that will ultimately make the difference. That in spite of the current capabilities of the Navy, we were still able to perform very well and at par with our more modern partners,” PN spokesperson Commander Jonathan Zata said Friday when asked what lessons the Navy has learned in such maneuvers.

Zata added that many lessons can still be gleaned once the after-mission report of the PN contingent is submitted and evaluated.

“Those are just some of the observations. Further details of the many lessons learned still have to be gleaned from the after-mission report to be submitted by the contingent,” he said.

The PN deployed the strategic sealift vessel BRP Davao Del Sur (LD-602) and frigate BRP Andres Bonifacio (FF-17), an AgustaWestland naval helicopter, and 700 sailors and marines for the exercises, which began June 27 and ended on Aug. 2.

The assets participated in several RIMPAC exercises, such as helicopter cross-decking, live-fire exercises, a special operations training, ground-air integration, and replenishment-at-sea.

“The Philippine Navy’s participation to RIMPAC 2018 trumpets the Command’s commitment in promoting multilateral cooperation to strengthen relationship and cooperation among participating navies of the world,” the PN spokesperson earlier said. PNA