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Bird takes command of U.S. Navy Seventh Fleet

Date Posted: 2008-07-17

The 7th Fleet, the US Navy’s largest and most far-flung command, has a new admiral at the helm.

In ceremonies at Yokusuka Naval Base, Vice Admiral John M. Bird assumed command aboard his flagship, the USS Blue Ridge. Bird takes responsibility for an area reaching from Korea and Japan through the Pacific and Indian Oceans to Africa’s east coast, a span of 135 million square kilometers.

Bird, during change of command ceremonies, pledged to strengthen U.S.-Japanese security alliances, while maintaining stability and peace in the Asia-Pacific region. He now commands nearly 50 ships, 120 aircraft and helicopters, and more than 20,000 sailors and Marines. Nearly half the ships are based in Japan and Guam.

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