July 21, 2016

Hirono Observes Rim of the Pacific Exercise Aboard U.S.S. Stennis, Meets with U.S. Ambassador to China

HONOLULU – Senator Mazie K. Hirono today joined international partners and Hawaii community leaders aboard the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier U.S.S. John C. Stennis to observe the ongoing Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) Exercise – the world’s largest naval exercise. Senator Hirono met with the U.S.S. Stennis Strike Group leadership about the U.S. Navy’s vital role to the Indo-Asia-Pacific rebalance, the unmatched capability of U.S. aircraft carriers and observed air operations below and from the deck of the supercarrier.

Senator Hirono also met with U.S. Ambassador to China and former Senator, Max Baucus, where they discussed China’s participation in this year’s RIMPAC and recent events involving China in the Pacific region.

“The Rim of the Pacific Exercise is a critical opportunity for the United States and our partners to simulate real world scenarios in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region. While on board the Stennis, I interacted with sailors, many of whom were young men and women but they were all highly trained and skilled. I was impressed with the level of discipline and professionalism of all the sailors,” said Senator Hirono. “Today's experience helps me in my role as Ranking Member of the Senate Armed Services Subcommittee on Seapower.”

Hironoand Baucus
Senator Hirono meets with U.S. Ambassador to China Max Baucus

Hirono and Hitchcock

Senator Hirono and Rear Admiral Marcus Hitchcock, U.S.S. John C. Stennis Strike Group Commander

Stennis Flight Deck

Senator Hirono, second from the left, observes U.S. Navy jet fighter landing aboard U.S.S. John C. Stennis
(photo: U.S.S. John C. Stennis)