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Tuesday, December 19, 2006

US Military Buildup in Gulf

Reuters and AP are both reporting that the US is considering a military buildup in the Gulf as a show of strength to Iran.

The idea of building up U.S. Navy forces has been discussed over some time and it's unclear when a decision will be made, the defense official said.

The aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower is already in the region. It left the United States in late September with four other Norfolk-based ships and submarines carrying 6,500 sailors.

The flotilla headed to the Mediterranean Sea and eventually went to relieve the Norfolk-based aircraft carrier USS Enterprise strike group, which was in the region supporting operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Also, the U.S. in late October led a naval training exercise aimed at blocking smuggling of nuclear weapons in the Persian Gulf.

The six-nation maneuvers off the coast of Iran were the first of their kind since North Korea's Oct. 9 nuclear test and U.N. sanctions that called on the international community to conduct searches at sea to ensure the reclusive communist nation is not secretly expanding its nuclear program.

The reuters report says officials are saying the news is "premature" and "speculative".

This is something to keep our eyes on though and I will continue updating as news comes in.