US Sending Nuclear-Powered Carrier For ‘Higher Stakes’ Red Sea Mission

Since the start of the Gaza war at least 20 ships have been damaged in the Red Sea amid the ongoing Houthi campaign to punish Israel and its international backers. The US-led Operation Prosperity Guardian is something which has retreated from headlines as it has by and large proved ineffective. 

US warships patrolling waters off Yemen have shot down dozens, or possibly even hundreds of drones and missiles at this point – while also at times carrying out offensive operations – but the Iran supported Houthis have remained undeterred.

The Pentagon is now readying the next step, sending the USS Harry S. Truman nuclear-powered aircraft carrier into the Red Sea. US military magazine Stripes writes of recent planning: “The nuclear-powered aircraft carrier and its 6,000-some sailors have spent recent months training in the western Atlantic Ocean for that mission — a rare, pre-planned deployment expected to take the ship into a hostile environment.”

“In recent weeks, its sailors have been undergoing flight deck testing, its pilots knowing that later this year they will be tasked with shooting down drones and munitions launched by the Iran-backed Houthis,” the publication details further.

European allies, and groups like the Atlantic Council have been bitterly complaining about the ongoing ‘failures’ of the Pentagon-led mission thus far:

Six months after the Joe Biden administration launched Operation Prosperity Guardian to ensure freedom of navigation in the Red Sea, the biggest issue facing the White House is not the Houthi threat but the US failure to rally partners and allies behind its leadership.

Several costly MQ-9 Reaper drones have already been lost in the region, with some shot down by the Houthis, as the US continues to expend billions related to Gaza conflict spillover.

While the Truman carrier will certainly be a huge show of force, it could be more simply that the 1,000-foot-long, 104,000-ton vessel will just make for a bigger Houthi target.

Head of the US Navy Fleet Forces Command Adm. Daryl Caudle has described of sailors preparing for the mission, “They know that they’re most likely going to be entering a weapon engagement zone.”

“For this group, this [deployment] is not with the mindset that they’re just going to go drill holes in the water somewhere — this is, ‘We’re going to be employed for combat.’”

Back in November, there was this stunning and contradictory admission from the Commander-in-Chief:

As has been the sad pattern after more that 20 years of the so-called Global War on Terror (GWOT), this naval commander is openly talking about deploying for “combat” in a new volatile and high-stakes theater, and yet there’s never been formal Congressional authorization to go to war with Yemen or the Houthis. Of course, there have been many such cases.

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