Amid heightened tensions between Washington and Tehran on the eve of the anniversary of the US-ordered assassination of Quds Force Commander Qasem Soleimani on 3 January, Air Force B-52 bombers flew nonstop from the United States to the Persian Gulf in a show of force ostensibly aimed at cautioning Iran against carrying out revenge attacks.
The US Defence Department is to send its only Navy aircraft carrier operating in the Middle East home to the US West Coast, in a decision announced on 31 December by the acting secretary of defence, Christopher Miller.
The Bremerton-based aircraft carrier USS Nimitz, deployed in April from Puget Sound, was on schedule to return before the end of the year. However, in early December, return was postponed, purportedly in part over concerns about potential
More recently the 1,092-foot-long USS Nimitz and its carrier strike group had been providing operational and close-air support off the coast of Somalia as part of Joint Task Force-Quartz and Operation Octave Quartz as US troops are relocated from Somalia to other areas of Africa.
Christopher Miller made the call to bring home the aircraft carrier just a day after Air Force B-52 bombers flew from the United States to the Persian Gulf in a show of military might.
The Air Force long-range bombers carried out a 30-hour round-trip mission to the Middle East took off from the air base in Minot, North Dakota, on Tuesday and were refuelled in flight. The second mission over the Persian Gulf…