SOUTH CHINA SEA -- Judge advocates from the U.S. 7th Fleet and III Marine Expeditionary Force (MEF) staff came together at sea aboard 7th Fleet flagship USS Blue Ridge (LCC 19).
U.S. Marine Corps Maj. Daniel Majtan, currently assigned to the III MEF in Okinawa, Japan, embarked the USS Blue Ridge during the ship’s port visit there last month. As part of the embark Majtan worked with Cmdr. Katherine Pasieta, fleet judge advocate; from U.S. 7th Fleet, with the objective of increasing naval integration, from a legal aspect.
“No question professionally that this has been a learning experience,” said Majtan. “To understand that we could both be supporting a joint task force where I’m supporting the land component while 7th Fleet is in the maritime component, I now have a better understanding what everyone is doing at sea which ultimately makes the joint task force stronger.”
During this time, Majtan was able to help support the 7th Fleet mission by standing as a judge advocate for the staff while one of the staff members was on temporary duty away from the ship.
“I believe the diversity in perspectives could be helpful,” said Pasieta. “Coming up as Navy judge advocates and having the narrow naval-centric point of view and having someone bring something else is helpful, which Maj. Majtan has done. As we talk through issues it’s great to have a different way of seeing things. For instance, we could be used to doing one thing a certain way, but together we could find a better method for things, which is helpful.”
7th Fleet serves with III MEF to continually execute missions that enable maritime superiority through effective command and control, prosecution of naval fires, and operational maneuvers.
III MEF is a forward-deployed, expeditionary air-ground-logistics team of over 30,000 Marines, capable of military operations ranging from major combat operations to humanitarian aid and crisis response.