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More US Warships Arrive In The Mideast Even As Trump Signals Draw Down

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Originally appeared at ZeroHedge

Despite Trump taking to Twitter Monday morning to question, “why are we protecting the shipping lanes for other countries (many years) for zero compensation,” and asserting further that “All of these countries should be protecting their own ships” the US naval build-up in the Persian Gulf region continues.

The US Navy confirmed early Monday that more military ships have arrived in the US 5th Fleet area of responsibility, which includes the Persian Gulf and Middle East waters. Though not pinpointing their exact location, the additional deployment which comes in the wake of last week’s US drone shoot down by Iran, that saw Washington coming very close to launching major strikes in response, is described in Navy statements as including a major amphibious assault ship and two support vessels:

Monday’s Navy statement says the USS Boxer amphibious assault ship, along with the amphibious transport dock USS John P. Murtha and the amphibious dock landing ship USS Harpers Ferry arrived in the 5th Fleet’s area of responsibility.

More US Warships Arrive In The Mideast Even As Trump Signals Draw Down

USS Boxer Amphibious Assault Ship. Image source: US Navy

The AP notes that the the USS Boxer carries the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit and a combat helicopter squadron, and departed the US west coast at the start of May as part of a regularly scheduled deployment; however, it’s quick transition to the 5th Fleet area is in support of the USS Abraham Lincoln carrier strike group already there in response to Iran.

The new military arrivals to the region came just as US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met with Saudi King Salman and separately with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in the port city of Jeddah to tackle the escalating crisis with Iran in the Persian Gulf.

More US Warships Arrive In The Mideast Even As Trump Signals Draw Down

The Navy’s futuristic looking amphibious transport dock, John P. Murtha. Image source: Naval Sea Systems Command/Huntington Ingalls Industries

Pompeo has described his hastily arranged visit as focused on putting together an international coalition against Iran, and further that it will coincide with new US sanctions on Tehran, expected to be announced at some point Monday.

More US Warships Arrive In The Mideast Even As Trump Signals Draw Down

USS Harper’s Ferry

The visit also comes just as Iran’s military has threatened to shoot down more US drones should they violate Iran’s airspace.

Both the Saudis and the Israelis have pushed for a more muscular US response to “Iranian aggression” in the region, thus both MbS and Netanyahu must have been deeply disappointed that last Thursday night’s readied American military response never materialized.

By all appearances, despite Trump’s clear preference to no longer be engaged in “protecting the shipping lanes for other countries” while receiving “zero compensation” in return, it appears the US Navy is prepared to continue doing just that.

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  • grumpy_carpenter

    Protecting shipping lanes from a problem they created then complaining that the should get paid for their “generosity” by third party nations who have nothing at all to do with the mess he created.

    Trumps ethics are pretty well that of a low level mafia boss …. not the smart ones who run the show and keep their own hands clean but the low level soldiers who do the dirt and are expected to do time for the bosses when the time comes. From his own “business” scams, bankrupt money laundering casinos (how the hell do you bankrupt a business where the house always wins …. and do it 6 time no less?), willing to accept dirt from foreign governments on his opponents, trade war shakedowns and now protection rackets.

    Unfuckingbelievable.

    • Ma_Laoshi

      Much truth in those few sentences. And it’s not a matter of style only: wasn’t Trump’s sidekick Mr. Cohn a former mafia consigliere, or the son of? Something in this direction is also a very simple and sufficient explanation for what kind of dirt the Deep State has on the Donald: if you do real estate in NYC, you gotta have an … understanding with the Mob, no way around it.

      But even as they are all criminals, the truly wise among the wise guys can pick associates who are trustworthy at least to themselves. This seems to be where Trump falls short–one of the reasons why his fortune seems to be just what he inherited plus interest, if you include debts.

      • grumpy_carpenter

        I know that going way back the mafia’s goal was to eventually go legit. You have to wonder how much mafia money is in legitimate companies, hedge funds and particularly the MIC.

        I’m not saying this is true but I’ve always thought the story of the Mafia over 30 or 40 years gaining control of the USA government first by funding congressional and senate candidates but then having their own man win the presidency would make a great novel or TV series …. or maybe non-fiction these days.

        • Ma_Laoshi

          I’m reminded of a scene close to the end in Austin Powers, where a frustrated Number Two berated his boss whose mind remained stuck in the Sixties (paraphrasing freely): “Amassing billions and bribing the powerful–it’s all legal now, and called Capitalism! The companies we set up as a front are making bigger profits than your grandiose world-blackmail schemes!”

        • Sinbad2

          “Some call it bootlegging. Some call it racketeering. I call it a business.”(Al Capone)
          “My rackets are run on strictly American lines and they’re going to stay that way.”(Al Capone)

    • Toronto Tonto

      They been at each others throats over there before USA existed .

      • grumpy_carpenter

        Sure and they managed to live their lives while empires and nations rose and fell for 6000 years without US intervention. So they live over there but the USA has to travel 10,000 miles to get in their shit and that still doesn’t address my point of how the USA creates havoc then as a side project Trump suggests the USA is owed payment from third parties for protection from the havoc they created.

    • Luke Hemmming

      Spot on Mr Grumpy. Excellent comment.

    • viktor ziv

      I’m sorry for Americans. Time for them to wake up has gone decades ago. Bring power to the people! Same applies for Europeans.

  • chris chuba

    Will these idiots resort to an illegal blockade because they are out of sanctions?

  • RichardD

    1/3rd of the worlds oil is produced by Persian Gulf countries. The Israeli American war that is planned, if it happens, is going to disrupt that to the point where fuel shortage famine is going to be an issue. I don’t know if the mass starvation will start in Europe, India or China. But none of them have domestic production sufficient to offset shortages. Even places like Egypt could be at risk.

    • FlorianGeyer

      Europe will be a lot nicer toward Russia if that happens Richard. That will piss Donald off.

    • Sinbad2

      If ME oil stopped flowing, the US economy would collapse, all the money made by all the countries selling oil goes through American banks, who tax it.
      Iran and Oman are the only Persian Gulf countries that can export oil without using the Persian Gulf, via Chabahar(Iran) and Muscat and Salalah for Oman.

      • RichardD

        True, but we won’t starve like some places.

        • Sinbad2

          Well, maybe, you can certainly grow the food, but because it uses a lot of oil it’s expensive. The US Government spends $25 billion a year in subsidies, to keep food affordable for Americans. Without that handout, could all Americans afford to eat?

          • RichardD

            The standard of living would be lowered across the board and everyone would eat. But there would be a lot of people very unhappy with Israel and Trump.

  • RichardD
    • Sinbad2

      You left off the last column, which shows production per person.
      That’s really important, because it shows how much benefit the people of a nation get from oil.

  • Fast Amir

    You orange prick. China nor Japan are threatening to bomb Iran or are imposing sanctions on them…..

  • Xoli Xoli

    The whole USA scrap yards is in middle east.

    • Toronto Tonto

      Best scrap yard in the world you should add .

      • Harry Smith

        Tonto, you made me laugh! Hope you will not edit or delete your comment. Yeah! American crap, the best crap in the world! While other countries use their fleets for similar objectives. :)

        • occupybacon

          For example Admiral Kuznetsov protects north Russia from an imminent polar bears invasion

      • Ozai Ozai

        Define best… Maybe the greatest junk we’ve ever seen before…bigly.

      • occupybacon

        Russians can’t even dream on a single Amphibious Assault Ship like in the picture, they are literary chocking with their own saliva when they see one.

        • grumpy_carpenter

          Explain why Russia or any nation needs amphibious assault ships except to invade another country?

          The USA needs stealth aircraft, carrier groups and Amphibious assault ships because they are always the attacking other countries an ocean away.

          Russia has better missile systems, dedicated interceptors and better artillery because their doctrine is to defend the homeland.

          Back in the Soviet days they had Amphibious Assault vehicles and they still do but not to the same extent. Theres were designed for river and coastal assaults in Europe not crossing oceans without land based air support.

          Why would Russians want to cross oceans to attack someone unless they were simply greedy assholes who wanted to control the world? It’s a REALLY expensive way to wage war. But then if you’re in the business of selling weapons and a $220M stealthy spy drone gets shot down by a $25,000 missile ….. would you rather be the company making 20% on the missile or the spy drone?

          What’s an Amphibious Assault Ship cost complete with air wing $8 – 10 B? I’ll bet there are executives in the MIC choking with their own saliva hoping one of them get taken out.

          • occupybacon

            Are you asking me something or are you telling me something? never mind, I didn’t read after ocean away

          • Luke Hemmming

            He is asking and making a statement pointing out that russia doesnt need to design and manufacture all these offensive weapons because Russia isn’t in the business of illegally occupying or invading countries that cant defend itself adequately. Unlike the USA who takes it upon themselves to just invite themselves into countries (syria) or uses countries under the guise of protecting them from a russian threat so they can set up missile launch systems right on the doorstep of Russia. And then they want to try and convince us ‘were not the aggressors here’. Yeeeeah riiiiiight. Yeah Nah! I loving how lately their schemes to try and start wars in Venezuela and Iran are failing due to the rest of the world not falling for their lies and BS. The USA is fast isolating itself from most of the world due to its lies and hypocrisy. The world is finally waking up to this and saying enough is enough. Trump is just digging the hole bigger for the USA to fall into. Now someone pass me a shovel cause I’ll help dig that hole for them too!

          • Jan Palmer

            Too true. Good comment. Too many sleeping Americans and the immigrants haven’t got a clue that they’ve migrated to their graveyard.

          • occupybacon

            They need but they can’t, that’s why they wanted so bad the French Mistral ship, it’s the fox and grapes story again.

          • viktor ziv

            Mistral ships are not offensive ships,dude. LOL

          • occupybacon

            You are right, it’s not “offensive ship” it’s “amphibious assault ship”

          • grumpy_carpenter

            You don’t keep up with Russian politics do you? if you did you would have know about the controversy the proposed purchase of the Mistral class vessels caused in Russia. Politicians argued they didn’t need them and if they did they could be built in Russia. The contract was never signed. The Russian navy wanted the vessels but politicians in Russia questioned the need for them. They were in pre contract negotiations but the purchase was far from a done deal at home when the sanctions struck.

            Russian shipyards are currently at full capacity working on destroyers, frigates, corvettes, icebreakers and submarines …. all missile boats. There are plans for carriers and Amphibious Assault Ships but they don’t seem to be enough of a priority to move missile platforms out of production.

          • occupybacon

            So official Russian version is that France wanted to sell them ship and Russia refused to buy it? It’s just a simple question, don’t write a ton about cabal and Nubiru

          • grumpy_carpenter

            I said nothing of the sort so don’t put words in my mouth asshole. EU sanctions on Russia over Ukraine scuttled the deal before it was finalized.

          • occupybacon

            That’s what I said, that they wanted it because they can’t built it themselves. They need to learn from the NATO master race. These 3 Mistral ships, one purchased directly from France, second and third built by mixed teams in any Russian naval yard, would had enabled Russia to participate on military exercises with friends around the globe and to start to obtain very nice contracts to build them for other emerging countries.

        • Concrete Mike

          Really , if I wrte russian id see that as a waste of money, russians dont invade by sea anyways.

          Russians dont invade.

          • occupybacon

            And that’s why they cried for the French Mistral more than they cried for the Kursk sub, then when rumored Egypt might buy the French ship, Russia became bff with Egypt

          • Concrete Mike

            Who wouldnt , they got helicopters to sell!

          • Luke Hemmming

            And awesome AD systems S400 and S500, planes too. And maybe in the future awesome torpedos that will destroy US navy vessels easily and stealthily

          • occupybacon

            That’s also true

          • grumpy_carpenter

            So now you’re just making shit up. Russians didn’t want the ships, Russian admirals did but the people and politicians didn’t see the need. Egypt approached Russia to purchase aircraft because the USA won’t sell them anything but F-16’s. Russia and China are the only other options and Egypt has a long history of buying Russian arms.

        • Sinbad2

          Yeah it’s hard to imagine a people who don’t want to invade and oppress others isn’t it.
          Of course for Americans and Jews taking slaves seems perfectly natural, so it’s understandable that you don’t understand liberty equality and fraternity.

          • Jan Palmer

            How’d that work out for the French?

          • occupybacon

            Fox and grapes story for children

        • Luke Hemmming

          Really?? How so?

        • Luke Hemmming

          Reality of the current situation is the USA is now falling behind in many areas of military equipment technological advancements. Missile technology is one them. Who needs ships when you can launch missiles that can circumnavigate the globe and are so fast no current missile system can defeat them.

          • occupybacon

            “Who needs ships when..blablabla” Fox and the grapes

          • grumpy_carpenter

            It’ll be interesting to see what happens between Iran and the US Navy in the coming months.

            CNN reported today that the US military was taken completely by surprise by the Iranian SAM that took down the Global Hawk. The Global Hawk was supposed to be flying out of range of anything the Iranians had. The SAM Iran used was a weapon the USA knew nothing about. It was a home grown mobile missile system that shot down the drone, scooted and the USA can’t find it and they don’t know how many of these weapons exist, where they are deployed, what kind of radars they use or how many the iranians have. That my friend is the REAL reason the USA didn’t strike Iran.

            It IS well known that the Iranians have much better anti-shipping missiles than SAMs. The next few months are going to be really interesting.

      • Luke Hemmming

        I’m well aware of the animosity between Canadians and the USA. Basically they hate each other. So why are you praising the USA? Because your not a canadian that’s why.

        • Toronto Tonto

          Yon know shitt if that’s what you think .

        • Xoli Xoli

          Please leave my friend Toronto Tonto out he is not asylum seeker or refugee from USA.

  • Jesus

    More amphibious ships to beef up a symbolic fleet that has little bite. Iranian F4 armed with cruise missiles would have great success against amphibious ships and carriers.
    Americans forces in the gulf are weak and lack the offensive punch to hurt Iran severely, while Iran can attack American forces and bases on the ground using their ballistic missile arsenal and an array of well armed proxies.

  • Uwe

    Even the most arrogants warmongers are not so sure how this conflict might develop. Iranians response is so unpredictable through their influence in the zone rather their miltary capabilities. This is why jews hate them so much, in a way they are just like them but on the opposite side.

  • Snowglobe

    The other half of the sentence of the partial tweet quoted in the article above….

    https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1143128646162493441

  • Jay Kim

    Has anybody like Bolt not explained the reason to Trump yet?
    US will attack Chineses carrier if it enter the Perician gulf.

  • FlorianGeyer

    What an earth the yanks want A landing ship for in Iranian waters, I do not know.

    What I do know is that over 4000 ships were involved with D Day 1944, and the Iranians have millions more soldiers they can mobilise than the few divisions the German army was able to muster.

    Ah, but theUS weapons are really ‘smart’ these days and the LGBT US army is really fearless, I hear you say. :)

    The Iranian missile abilities are also a lot ‘smarter’ that the German missiles in 1944, and the Iranian troops are willing and able to expunge the US ships from the Iranian shores.

    • Sinbad2

      Perhaps Yemen?

      • FlorianGeyer

        Possibly , but the Houthis have pin point accuracy capabilities now :)

        Big ships make big targets.

        • Sinbad2

          But the Americans have air power and pilots on amphetamines.

          • FlorianGeyer

            Yes, the US do have airpower, yet it has not been tested in an environment where their enemies can shoot back with robust defences since the Vietnam War.

            The advancement in missile technology seems to have outstripped that of aircraft in recent decades.

    • PZIVJ

      The group is probably headed to Diego Garcia atoll far away in the Indian ocean and a safe distance. But when the Marines run the base out of booze and alcohol, they will have to relocate. :D

      • FlorianGeyer

        Are there prostitutes on Diego Garcia, or will the Marines have to make do with other US servicemen and women ?

  • Sinbad2

    Asking America to stop playing war is like asking a junkie to give up heroin, it just ain’t gonna happen, unless they are put in a padded cell and a nappy.

    • FlorianGeyer

      Trump likes walls, so how about building a wall all around mainland USA to create a large Ghetto.

      The Win Win for the ‘Great Wall if America’ would be that the Jews in the US would really feel ‘at home’. :)

      • Sinbad2

        I always thought the wall was to stop Americans escaping.

        • FlorianGeyer

          Yes, it will be constructed on the lines of the warsaw Ghetto :)

    • Jan Palmer

      Eliminate the neo-con Canaanites.

  • Assad must stay (gr8rambino)

    just more target practice for iran lol

  • Xoli Xoli

    Pompeo is quickly in Saudi Arabia to arrange for war.Trump recall the attack.National security adviser inform the staff that their launched a cyberattack on Iran military facilities. Now who is in charge of USA.

    • HardHawk

      your question it is academic right?

      Whom you expect is in charge in a banana colony, where all behave like monkeys?

  • goingbrokes

    This is a splendid example of how the “freedom of navigation” is abused by the US empire constantly. A slew of warships arrive to bully yet another nation, but it’s ok because no international laws are broken. Of course no laws are broken because the laws are stupid and allow unrestricted sailing “rights” for imperial warships, even though everyone knows it’s wrong! In its current form this law ENABLES imperial gunboat diplomacy – no one else benefits from the freedom to sail warships everywhere!
    The freedom of navigation should only apply to civilian ships. Warships must have limitations on numbers and routes. It won’t stop wars necessarily, but it will require much more than an elite clique decision to sail entire navies to bully nations.

  • Tommy Jensen

    It begins as I pointed out years ago before anybody. Protection money on rich countries energy transport.

  • Toronto Tonto

    Where is the Russian scrap heap OLE SMOKEY the shitt box POS carrier , still getting more damage at the hands of the drunks trying to fix something they cannot .

    • Xoli Xoli

      If their are really drunk then i scared.Their might press wrong buttons.

  • Xoli Xoli

    Let the anti ship messiles do the talking.

  • Xoli Xoli

    Good israel targets for sabotaging.