NAVY WIRE SERVICE (NWS) - 2 September 1999 - NWS02sep-2. T.R., CVW Eight depart the Arabian Gulf by USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) Public Affairs ARABIAN GULF (NWS) -- After six weeks supporting Operation Southern Watch, USS Theodore Roosevelt and embarked Carrier Air Wing (CVW) Eight departed the Arabian Gulf after being relieved by USS Constellation (CV 63) August 28. T.R., CVW Eight and the 4,800 crewmembers aboard departed Norfolk, Va., March 26. The aircraft carrier and the Theodore Roosevelt Battle Group left for a routine six- month deployment to the Arabian Gulf. However, on April 6, T.R. was diverted to the Ionian Sea to participate in Operation Allied Force to support the NATO-led air campaign in Kosovo. During the 10-week campaign, over 3,000 combat sorties were launched from T.R. without a single loss of aircraft or personnel. Air Wing Eight aircraft expended more than 800 tons of ordnance during the conflict. This operation also marked the first time a U.S. carrier battle group was transferred to NATO operational control. The T.R. and CVW Eight team arrived in the Arabian Gulf on July 14 to support the coalition-enforced no-fly zone in Southern Iraq. Four days later, CVW Eight F/A-18 Hornets and F-14 Tomcats used precision-guided munitions to strike an Iraqi surface-to-air missile site. As T.R. and CVW Eight completed their time on station in the Arabian Gulf, more than 2,300 sorties had been flown and more than four million gallons of JP-5 fuel was burned. These sorties included eight separate combat strikes on Iraqi air defense sites, and more than 30 tons of ordnance expended in response to Iraqi aggression against coalition aircraft. These bombardments represent the first time in recent history that strikes from the same aircraft carrier have taken place in two theaters of operation within one deployment. USS Theodore Roosevelt is homeported in Norfolk and CVW Eight is based at Naval Air Station Oceana, Va. For more information on the ships of USS Theodore Roosevelt's Battle Group and squadrons of CVW Eight, visit the T.R. web site at <>. -USN- -USN- -USN-