More American ships are heading towards Israel and 2,000 soldiers are on high alert. A look at US aid
WASHINGTON (AP) — Within hours of The horrific October 7 attack by HamasThe United States began moving warships and aircraft into the region ready to provide Israel with everything it needed to respond. On Tuesday, more ships and troops headed toward Israel, and other forces in the United States prepared to deploy if asked.
An American aircraft carrier and its strike group are already in the eastern Mediterranean, while another aircraft carrier has left the United States and is heading in that direction. In addition, three Marine Corps warships are moving to the area. Dozens of aircraft have been sent to US military bases throughout the Middle East, and US Special Operations Forces are working with the Israeli army on planning and intelligence.
As of Tuesday, five shipments of American weapons and equipment had arrived in Israel.
This build-up reflects growing US concern that the deadly fighting between Hamas and Israel will escalate into a broader regional conflict. Therefore, the primary mission of US warships and aircraft is to establish a large and visible presence that will deter Hezbollah, Iran, or others from exploiting the situation.
A look at the weapons and aid provided by the US Army:
Ships and seaplanes
One of the most visible examples of the American response has been in the waters around Israel, where a group of massive warships are in or moving toward the eastern Mediterranean and Red Sea.
USS Gerald R. Collection Ford aircraft carrier strike It was ordered to head to the eastern Mediterranean within hours of the attack, and the Pentagon said on Tuesday that the ship’s deployment had been extended for six months in the region and did not set a final date. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin in recent days ordered the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower aircraft carrier group to join the USS Ford in the eastern Mediterranean, and those ships are now heading across the Atlantic.
The Pentagon said Tuesday it would send the amphibious ready group USS Bataan, consisting of three ships carrying thousands of Marines from the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit, to the region. A US official said that the amphibious transport ship USS Mesa Verde is in the Mediterranean Sea, and the amphibious assault ship Bataan and the landing ship USS Carter Hall are in the Gulf region and are now heading towards it. The Red Sea. The official spoke on condition of anonymity to provide details on the ships’ locations.
The ships carry helicopters and assault boats that can insert Marines into hostile territory or provide medical care or other assistance.
Warships, especially aircraft carriers with their combat aircraft and surveillance aircraft, have historically proven to be an effective means of deterrence against Iranian and other armed activities in the Middle East. Carriers act as command and control centers and can wage information warfare. They carry F-18 fighter jets that can carry out deterrence missions or strike targets. They also have E-2 Hawkeye surveillance aircraft that can provide early warning of missile launches and detect enemy movements.
Weapons and special operations forces
Planes loaded with American weapons have already begun to arrive in Israel. Austin watched as the crew unloaded a C-17 A transport plane, today, Friday, at the Nevatim air base, east of Gaza. The Pentagon said on Tuesday that five such shipments have already been delivered and more are expected.
US defense officials say the administration has already given Israel small-diameter bombs, other munitions and interceptor missiles for the Iron Dome air defense system, and more will be coming. The United States is also working to persuade defense companies to expedite orders for weapons from Israel that are already in place, including Iron Dome munitions.
The Iron Dome munitions that the United States is providing to Israel will likely be in addition to munitions that Israel has already requested and will be part of ongoing military assistance packages. The packages will also include JDAM kits – essentially a tail fin and navigation kit that turns a “dumb” bomb into a “smart” bomb that can be guided to a target.
In addition, the United States established a small cell of special operations forces that worked with Israel, providing intelligence and planning, as well as advising the IDF on hostage recovery efforts. The Pentagon said that those forces are not participating in any hostage rescue operations, and there are no other American military forces on the ground in Israel.
Air Force warplanes
The Pentagon has also ordered additional warplanes to support A-10, F-15 and F-16 squadrons at bases throughout the Middle East. More will be added if necessary.
Air Force Secretary Frank Kendall said last week at an Atlantic Council event that the service was ordering units that were about to return home to stay put with their replacements.
The US Air Force already has significant air power in the region to conduct operations with manned and unmanned aircraft, most notably in Syria, where an Air Force F-16 was ordered there last week. Shooting down a Turkish drone Which posed a threat to American ground forces.
More troops are preparing
Austin ordered about 2,000 American soldiers to prepare to deploy if necessary in the coming days and weeks. Pentagon spokeswoman Sabrina Singh told reporters on Tuesday that the units had not yet been identified. She said the forces would be able to respond quickly, especially to provide intelligence, surveillance, transportation and medical assistance.
The 2,000 troops are likely to include additional personnel from the Air Force and Army.