PRELUDE TO JOINT U.S./ISRAELI STRIKE ON IRAN????
As we write, the arrival of new U.S. warships will mark the largest build-upof Naval forces in the Gulf since the 1991 Gulf War.
- The aircraft carriers USS Theodore Roosevelt and the
- USS Ronald Reagan,along with the
- USS Iwo Jima, an Amphibious Assault Ship are sailing toward the Persian Gulf to reinforce the US strike forces in the region, along witha British Royal Navy carrier battle group and a French nuclear hunter-killersubmarine.
This move follows the ominous Operation Brimstone, a massive militaryexercise involving more than a dozen warships from the US, England, andFrance in the Atlantic Ocean in preparation for a possible confrontationwith Iran.
The USS Roosevelt, which participated in the just-concluded exercise, andthe USS Ronald Reagan will join two US naval battle groups in the area: theUSS Abraham Lincoln with its Carrier Strike Group Nine ; and the USSPeleliu, and Amphibious Assault Ship with its expeditionary strike group.
Naval forces now heading towards the Gulf include:
1. Carrier Strike Group Nine:
- USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN72) nuclear powered carrier with its Carrier AirWing TwoDestroyer Squadron Nine:
- USS Mobile Bay (CG53) guided missile cruiser
- USS Russell (DDG59) guided missile destroyer
- USS Momsen (DDG92) guided missile destroyer
- USS Shoup (DDG86) guided missile destroyer
- USS Ford (FFG54) guided missile frigate
- USS Ingraham (FFG61) guided missile frigate
- USS Rodney M. Davis (FFG60) guided missile frigate
- USS Curts (FFG38) guided missile frigate
- Plus one or more nuclear hunter-killer submarines
2. Peleliu Expeditionary Strike Group:
- USS Peleliu (LHA-5) a Tarawa-class amphibious assault carrier
- USS Pearl Harbor (LSD52) assult ship
- USS Dubuque (LPD8) assult ship/landing dock
- USS Cape St. George (CG71) guided missile cruiser
- USS Halsey (DDG97) guided missile destroyer
- USS Benfold (DDG65) guided missile destroyer
3.Carrier Strike Group Two:
- USS Theodore Roosevelt (DVN71) nuclear powered carrier with its Carrier AirWing EightDestroyer Squadron 22:
- USS Monterey (CG61) guided missile cruiser
- USS Mason (DDG87) guided missile destroyer
- USS Nitze (DDG94) guided missile destroyer
- USS Sullivans (DDG68) guided missile destroyer
- USS Springfield (SSN761) nuclear powered hunter-killer submarine
IWO ESG ~ Iwo Jima Expeditionary Strike Group
- USS Iwo Jima (LHD7) amphibious assault carrier with its Amphibious SquadronFourand with its 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit
- USS San Antonio (LPD17) assault ship
- USS Velia Gulf (CG72) guided missile cruiser
- USS Ramage (DDG61) guided missile destroyer
- USS Carter Hall (LSD50) assault ship
- USS Roosevelt (DDG80) guided missile destroyer
- USS Hartfore (SSN768) nuclear powered hunter-killer submarine
Carrier Strike Group Seven:
- USS Ronald Reagan (CVN76) nuclear powered carrier with its Carrier Air Wing14
Destroyer Squadron 7:
- USS Chancellorsville (CG62) guided missile cruiser
- USS Howard (DDG83) guided missile destroyer
- USS Gridley (DDG101) guided missile destroyer
- USS Decatur (DDG73) guided missile destroyer
- USS Thach (FFG43) guided missile frigate
- USNS Rainier (T-AOE-7) fast combat support ship
This massive deployment means that hundreds of nuclear-armed warplanes,thousands of troops, and destroyers capable of launching cruise missilescarrying nuclear weapons, bunker busters, or fragmentation bombs will beavailable for a strike on Iran.
While Russia is bogged down with the crisisin Georgia, and China is occupied with the Olympics, the Bush Administrationmay believe that this is an opportune time to strike.
This massivedeployment is occurring as both Houses of Congress are set to approveresolutions that would mandate a U.S. blockade (which is an act of war underinternational law).