BusinessInsider has reported that the US is getting its final pieces in place in the Straits of Hormuz. With threats from Iran that it will close the Straits with mines etc if attacked, the US is now moving in minesweepers.
The global signs of a coming military conflict with Iran continue to build, and today the U.S. Navy made clear its intentions by announcing it’s sending four additional mine countermeasure shipsto the Strait of Hormuz.
Stars and Stripes reports the Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Jonathan Greenert told the Senate Armed Services Committee that he’s sending the mine ships in addition to four airborne mine countermeasure helicopters.
Iran has already warned that one of its first steps in closing the Strait of Hormuz, and choking off 40 percent of the world’s oil supply, will be to mine the strait and deploy its fleet of small electronic submarines.
To get “ready” Greenert is also bringing upgrades to mine neutralization vehicles, submarine torpedoes, optics, and weapons to counter the swarm maneuvers employed by the Iranian navy.
This move will double the number of minesweepers in the Persian Gulf, but Greenert declined to call the deployments a surge, as when forces are built up for a planned operation, instead telling reporters: “I’m not going to define it as a surge. You called it a deployment, how’s that”
The four ships, the Sentry, Devastator, Pioneer, and Warrior will join the Navy’s Fifth Fleet in Bahrain from San Diego. Their departure date has not yet been announced, as part of operational security.
They will likely be transported by the Navy’s heavy-lift ships which travel at about 16 mph.
After the Enterprise leaves Sunday, three Norfolk-based guided-missile destroyers will head out Monday — the USS Porter, USS Nitze and USS James E. Williams.
The strike group is commanded by Rear Adm. Ted Carter Jr.
Carrier Air Wing 1, based at Naval Air Station Oceana in Virginia Beach, will be embarked aboard the Enterprise.
The Enterprise was launched September 24, 1960, by Newport News Shipbuilding and Drydock Co. and commissioned November 25, 1961.
Its record of high-profile service began with the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962. Since then, it has served in countless missions around the world.