Thursday, December 8, 2011
The United States has deployed yet another warship to the Middle East, meaning that three major aircraft carriers allied with numerous guided-missile destroyer ships are now either already located or are on their way to the troubled region.
According to Stratfor.com’s weekly naval update, a third Nimitz-class supercarrier, the USS Abraham Lincoln, has now been deployed to join the U.S. fifth fleet in the Middle East.
A KOMO news report confirms the deployment, noting that 5,000 sailors are on board “headed back to the Middle East where its fighter jets will back up U.S. troops in Afghanistan.” The mission is scheduled to last four months.
The deployment follows last week’s news that the USS Carl Vinson aircraft carrier, in addition to guided missile destroyers USS Bunker Hill and USS Halsey, are also on their way to the Middle East to join the 5th fleet area of operations. The ships are currently almost half way across the Pacific Ocean on their route through Asian territory.
The warships will join the USS John C. Stennis, which is already stationed just outside Pakistani and Iranian territorial waters. The USS Bataan (LHD-5) Wasp-class amphibious assault ship is also stationed in the region just south of Yemen.
The United States now has a total of five major aircraft carriers deployed around the world, the same number of warships that were in action shortly before the invasion of Iraq in early 2003.