Updated Aug 26, 2018

U.S. Navy reinstates Cold War-era fleet to explore Russian military expansion

Photograph of aircraft flying in formation over the aircraft carrier USS George HW Bush during a joint training exercise. Photo: Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

After being deactivated for seven years, the U.S. Navy has formally reactivated the 2nd Fleet based in Norfolk, Virginia, in an effort to explore Russia's military expansion, Politico reports.

The details: Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson said the move is not because the Navy is "looking for a fight." The Navy had depended on the Cold War-era naval command "for decades to confront adversaries in the waters off North America," per Politico. The fleet will be responsible for assigning ships, aircraft and Marine landing forces "for potential operations along the East Coast and in the North Atlantic, where melting Arctic ice has also heightened the competition for natural resources."

What they're saying: During a ceremony aboard the USS George H.W. Bush, Fleet Forces Command chief Adm. Chris Grady explained, "We as a Navy, as a nation, have not had to confront such peer competitors since the Cold War ended nearly three decades ago... Our sea control and our power projection, two vital elements of our national security, are being challenged by resurgent foreign powers, namely Russia and China."

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