By MARCUS WEISGERBER
Posted: Saturday Jan 19, 2013
LONDON -- A U.S.-U.K. effort to make sure aircraft carriers can operate together seamlessly is a model other initiatives between the British and American militaries, U.S. U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said.
Through this partnership -- known as Integrated Aircraft Carrier Cooperation -- the U.S. Navy is helping its British counterparts develop a next generation carrier. The group also looks at ways to make existing aircraft carriers more interoperable.
"That is a model for the kind of cooperation we want to engage in in the future," Panetta said during a Jan. 19 briefing after a meeting with British Defense Secretary Philip Hammond.
This type if cooperation is important now more than ever, Panetta said, particularly as defense spending in each nation shrinks.
The aircraft carrier project -- which just celebrated its one-year anniversary -- will bring the British and American navies "closer together than ever," Panetta said.