US Navy Move Major Asset To Middle East

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Photo Credit: 12019, via Pixabay

The US Navy is moving an Ohio-class nuclear submarine to the Mediterranean Sea. Ohio submarines have an array of nuclear and conventional cruise missiles, and nuclear ballistic missiles.

The move is meant to project additional deference against other powers in the region, especially Russia and Iran. The submarine could end up using conventional cruise missiles against militant targets in case Israel is attacked from other fronts. CNN reports:

In a rare announcement, the US military said a guided missile submarine has arrived in the Middle East, a message of deterrence clearly directed at regional adversaries as the Biden administration tries to avoid a broader conflict amid the Israel-Hamas war.

US Central Command said on social media Sunday that an Ohio-class submarine was entering its area of responsibility. A picture posted with the announcement appeared to show the sub in the Suez Canal northeast of Cairo.

America’s ballistic submarines are a strategic asset who’s security is closely guarded. Additional details on the cruise or the vessel’s armaments remain classified. Business Insider continues:

Israel news outlet Ynet reported the submarine newly deployed in the region is the largest of the 14 ballistic submarines controlled by the US Navy and comes equipped with ballistic munitions. Insider was unable to independently verify the exact weapon configuration aboard the vessel. Still, together, the fleet of two dozen nuclear-powered and capable submarines carries about half of all US strategic thermonuclear warheads.

It remains unclear whether the submarine set sail to the region in response to new intelligence suggesting its use might be necessary or if the move was previously planned as part of the US’s current defensive military posture in the Middle East.

While carriers remain the flagships of the US Navy, submarines are critical to US security. Positioning in the Eastern Mediterranean gives the US a chance to posture against both Russia and Iran. While the submarine is quiet, the Mediterranean is much more mapped and could put its location in jeopardy.

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