For only the fourth time in the last ten years, a second carrier (the Enterprise) along with associated strike craft has been deployed to the same region of the world. This was a decision the Navy did not make lightly in terms of increased operating costs and in that it sends a clear message to the rest of the world.
Cmdr. Amy Derrick-Frost of the Bahrain-based 5th Fleet stated that this second force was going to support the American military operations in Afghanistan and anti-piracy efforts off Somalia’s coast and in the Gulf of Aden. OK…sure.
Interestingly, this also puts major naval powers into a much better strategic position should anything untoward happen in North or South Korea. North Korea has now moved all three stages of a long-range rocket into position for a controversial launch, vowing to push ahead with their plan in defiance of international warnings against violating a ban on missile activity. In addition, rumors are surfacing that a new underground tunnel is in the works in preparation for yet another nuclear test. This only reinforces speculation that the North may be attempting to master the technology needed to mount a warhead on a long range missile.
All in all, it’s shaping up to be a most engaging summer.