As the tensions in the Middle East continue to escalate, the United States has made the groundbreaking decision to send over 12,000 personnel from the US Navy and Marine Corps to the Eastern Mediterranean. According to reports, this move is being made to increase military presence in the area.
Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III recently announced a series of actions meant to strengthen American military presence in the Middle East region. The USS Dwight D. Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group has been redirected to join forces with the USS Gerald R. Ford Carrier Strike Group currently operating in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea, bringing up their tally of warships up to ten total.
The USS Gerald R. Ford alone carries 4500 sailors on board and 1600 additional service members on five other ships while another 5000 service members are aboard USS Dwight D Eisenhower’s three accompanying vessels for backup support.
A few days ago, Secretary Austin also put roughly 2000 forces on standby for deployment if needed within 24 hours according to FOX News report; this followed a special operations Marine Corps unit’s sudden departure due to “emerging events”.
Furthermore, Austin placed an unspecified number of U.S forces under “prepare-to-deploy” orders as part of his contingency planning efforts stating: “I have placed an additional number of forces on prepare-to-deploy orders as part of prudent contingency planning, to increase their readiness and ability to quickly respond as required.”
This move by Defense Secretary Lloyd J Auston III reinforces America’s commitment towards protecting its interests abroad and maintaining peace and stability throughout its areas of influence such as Europe and Middle East regions which have been experiencing increased turmoil lately due various factors including recent diplomatic disputes between Iran and Israel among others.
This will also serve as deterrent against any potential threat by hostile actors who may try taking advantage of current situation or test United States’ resolve using force or otherwise, thus increasing readiness for any possible contingency scenario that may arise out from these escalated tensions in near future.