USS Benfold Arrives in China

Discussion in 'U.S. Navy' started by Pathfinder, Aug 10, 2016.

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  1. Pathfinder

    Pathfinder Lieutenant Colonel

    Dec 17, 2015
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    USS Benfold Arrives in Qingdao, China


    QINGDAO, China (NNS) -- Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Benfold (DDG 65) arrived in Qingdao, China, Aug. 8, for a scheduled port visit.

    Benfold's visit advances maritime cooperation and encourages a positive naval relationship with the People's Liberation Army (Navy) (PLA(N)) North Sea Fleet.

    "Sailors are Sailors at the end of the day, be it in the east or in the west; we all face the same challenges at sea," said Cmdr. Justin Harts, Benfold commanding officer. "These similarities unite us. I am sure that by the end of the week we will see that American Sailors and Chinese sailors are as close as any other sailors out on the high seas. This port visit is a tremendous opportunity to build relationships between sailors based on shared interests and perspectives."

    As part of the visit to Qingdao, Benfold will host a reception and ship visits, as well as attend those hosted by the PLA(N). The scheduled events, including a sports day and community relations event featuring the U.S. 7th Fleet Band, will allow sailors from both nations to interact and build relationships through their shared maritime interests.

    Benfold Sailors will have the opportunity to explore Qingdao through tours organized by the ship's Morale, Welfare, and Recreation program.

    Benfold, forward deployed to Yokosuka, Japan, and a member of Destroyer Squadron 15, is on patrol in the 7th Fleet area of operations supporting security and stability in the Indo-Asia-Pacific.
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  2. Freyja

    Freyja 2nd Lieutenant

    Jun 23, 2016
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    Are these goodwill visits having their intended consequences? Or inviting China to international exercises like RIMPAC?

    Aren't these types of visits supposed to actually promote goodwill and lessen tensions by showing the two sides can still maintain cordial relations on a positive trajectory? Maybe it's biased media coverage, negative = views generally, but if they are goodwill visits, there seems to be a notable lack of goodwill to be shared at the moment.

    I guess the sailors themselves, the "man on the ground" so to speak sees things differently.
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  3. Falcon

    Falcon Lieutenant Colonel Staff Member Social Media Team

    Oct 10, 2015
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    I think it helps our sailors understand how the Chinese are culturally and learn what level their Chinese counter parts are at. From a "realpolitik" perspective this visit doesn't mean much, this won't change anyones policies but it at least gets some sailors together from some nice cultural exchange, besides its good for the morale of our sailors after spending months at sea.