Italy and Virginia, a friendship shaping the future

May 27, 2018 1168

BY: Armando Varricchio

IN JULY, the Italian Navy tall ship Amerigo Vespucci — a three-mast, 331-foot school ship built in 1931 — left Italy and ventured on the long journey to the United States and Canada. A year later, the Italian Navy FREMM-class frigate Alpino, built by Fincantieri with state-of-the-art technologies, is engaged in a U.S. campaign tour and is moored in Norfolk, site of the Navy base and the headquarters of NATO’s Allied Command Transformation.

Both these two ships, although they are very different, are testament to Italian excellence and to our country’s unique ability to combine tradition and innovation. They are a clear reminder of the state-of-the-art level of Italy’s defense industry, the result of a long-standing maritime tradition and history that is second to none. The visits of the Vespucci and the Alpino also bear a clear and unambiguous message: Italy and the United States are strong allies and friends, ready to face challenges together, now and in the future.

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