In response to the Hamas attack that resulted in more than 700 deaths, United States Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin mobilized naval forces toward the eastern Mediterranean.
Lloyd Austin mobilized the USS Gerald R. Ford.
Lloyd Austin, the United States Secretary of Defense, has instructed the aircraft carrier USS Gerald R. Ford, along with its fleet of 5,000 sailors and fighter aircraft, to head toward the eastern Mediterranean.
This maneuver, which also includes cruisers and destroyers, is a show of force with the intention of being ready for any contingency. Tasks include intercepting additional supplies destined for Hamas and conducting surveillance operations.
This considerable deployment, which includes various warships and warplanes, highlights the determination of the United States to prevent the conflict from escalating further.
Israel‘s reactions and international support
Following the Hamas attack, the Israeli government formally declared war and authorized “significant military measures.” This statement came a day after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu assured that both President Joe Biden and other Western leaders had supported Israel‘s freedom of action.
Initial reports reveal that at least four US citizens were killed during the attacks, with another seven still missing. These figures, still subject to change, were provided by an anonymous official following initial data collected by the United States embassy in Jerusalem.
According to Israeli sources, the total casualty count exceeds 700, and it is estimated that another 100 individuals have been taken hostage in Gaza.
Increase of air and naval forces in the region
In addition to the USS Gerald R. Ford, the United States has deployed the cruiser USS Normandy and the destroyers USS Thomas Hudner, USS Ramage, USS Carney and USS Roosevelt. The presence of fighter aircraft squadrons has also increased, including the Air Force’s F-35, F-15, F-16 and A-10 models, thus strengthening its posture in the region.
US Global Defense Positioning
AUSTIN SAID THAT the US has forces ready globally to expand its deterrence posture when necessary.
The Biden administration committed to supplying the Israel Defense Forces with more equipment and resources, including ammunition. Austin said this backup will begin its journey imminently and is expected to arrive in the coming days.
Congress’s decision on support for Israel hangs in the balance due to turbulence in the House of Representatives following the recent removal of Speaker Kevin McCarthy.
The Ford: Naval deployment in the Mediterranean
The El Ford aircraft carrier battle group, based in Virginia, was already marking its presence in the Mediterranean. Recently, it conducted joint maritime exercises with Italy in the Ionian Sea, highlighting its first large-scale operation.
Biden-Netanyahu Dialogue: Terrorism and Diplomacy
US President Joe Biden and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu held a telephone conversation on Sunday. They discussed the alarming situation of hostages captured by the terrorist group Hamas, including entire families, from the elderly to infants, according to a White House report.
Biden stressed the need for all nations to “remain cohesive in the face of such ruthless actions.”
The American leader updated Netanyahu on US diplomatic initiatives. He assured that additional support for Israeli troops is in the process and that there will be more support in the coming days, the White House reported. In addition, they discussed strategies to “guarantee that no adversary of Israel considers that he can take advantage of the current situation.”