The Pentagon has sent a second aircraft carrier strike group to the eastern Mediterranean, near Israel, to stop Iran or Hezbollah and prevent the conflict between Israel and Hamas from spreading in the region. This is the aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower, which was in the area in 2016 fighting the Islamic State amid jihadist fever. This time it was escorted by the guided missile cruiser USS Philippine Sea, and the guided missile destroyers USS Laboon, USS Mason, and USS Gravely. The Eisenhower will soon join the aircraft carrier USS Gerald Ford, which arrived in the Middle East this week as a deterrent lever.
This is the second strike group the US has deployed to the area. A few days later, the USS Ford strike group arrived in the waters of the eastern Mediterranean escorted by the cruiser USS Normandy, as well as the destroyers USS Thomas Hudner, USS Ramage, USS Carney, and USS Roosevelt.
The USS Eisenhower aircraft carrier displaces 97,000 tons of weight and inside it, there are nearly 5,000 marines and about 70 aircraft, including F-18 fighters, helicopters, and surveillance or electronic warfare aircraft. The ship and its battle group left Norfolk, Virginia (USA) on Friday and headed for the eastern Mediterranean. This therefore represents a change of plans as it was originally intended to sail into the waters of the United States European Command.
“I have ordered the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group (CSG) to begin moving toward the Eastern Mediterranean,” Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said in a statement confirming the deployment. “As part of our effort to prevent anti-Israel actions or any efforts to expand this war after the Hamas attack on Israel.”
Neither Ford nor Eisenhower would participate in the Gaza conflict nor would they participate in Israeli operations during a hypothetical ground invasion of the Strip. Indeed, the presence of two of the US Navy’s most powerful ships is designed to send a message of deterrence to Iran and its allies in the region.
According to UsniNews, the USS Eisenhower will relieve the aircraft carrier Ford, which is currently in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea. Currently, there is no official information on the duration of the mission of the two attack groups near Israel.
The USS Ford, the Navy’s newest in-service aircraft carrier, left Norfolk in early May for its first global deployment and has been operating throughout the Mediterranean Sea since mid-June.
Additionally, the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson departed Naval Air Station North Island, California, on Thursday for deployment to the Indo-Pacific.