7th Fleet returns to its old base in China

U.S. 7th Fleet flagship USS Blue Ridge pulls into dry dock at Commander Fleet Activities Yokosuka, Japan, for an incline survey Jan. 17, 2012.

Seventh Fleet leaders and flagship USS Blue Ridge arrived in Qingdao, China, for a goodwill visit Aug. 5.

Qingdao is the home port of the People’s Liberation Army Navy North Sea Fleet. But from 1946 to 1949, it was the 7th Fleet’s home port, according to a 7th Fleet news release.

The fleet moved to Subic Bay in the Philippines shortly before the Communist Red Army drove the Chinese Nationalist Kuomintang from power on the mainland.

Pacific Stars and Stripes also had personnel in China in those days.

In a 1947 article filed from Peking (modern day Beijing), Stripes reporter Andrew Headland Jr. wrote of surviving an ambush, along with a team of U.S. servicemembers attempting to negotiate a truce between Nationalist and Communist forces in Manchuria.

In Qingdao, Blue Ridge crew and 7th Fleet staff, Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 12 and Marines from Fleet Antiterrorism Security Team Pacific will welcome Chinese guests and media aboard for guided tours, participate in friendly sporting events with members of the PLA(N) and conduct planning for a search-and-rescue exercise, according to a 7th Fleet news release.

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