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Army Considers Aircraft Operations from Naval Vessels; Lt. Gen. John Wissler Comments

Apache on seaU.S. Army attack helicopters could soon operate from ships at sea as the military branch plans an expansion of its role in the Asia Pacific region, Military Times reported Sunday.

Army aviation officials Col. John Lindsay and Col. Frank Tate spoke at a recent Center for Strategic and International Studies event on the possibility of such an Army maritime capability, Marcus Weisgerber and Paul McLeary report.

According to the report, the concerns are mostly centered on the demand for maritime capability investment and maritime operations challenges for the Army, as the Asia Pacific region is “geared more toward Navy and Air Force capabilities.”

“The Army is not new to this idea of maritime operations and ship operations,” said Tate, the Army’s chief of aviation force development.

However, Weisgerber and McLeary note caution from Lt. Gen. John Wissler, commander of III Marine Expeditionary Force and U.S. Marine Corps Forces Japan.

“[Marine Corps] helicopters are different than [Army] helicopters,” Wissler said.

“The maritimization of an aviation platform is a very extensive, technical thing,” he added, noting the need for planning in Army operations in an amphibious environment.

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