MANAMA – US officials, on duty on the USS Abraham Lincoln aircraft carrier and installed at an American naval base in Bahrain, interviewed Sky News.
US military officials said the mission was to prevent Iran from attacking US targets, but added that they were also ready to launch offensive attacks if ordered.
“A large part of deterrence is the readiness that backs that deterrence up. We are ready to defend the US and the US interests if called upon… My job is to be here, to be ready, to deter and to defend if required”, Rear Admiral Michael Boyle, commander of Carrier Strike Group 12, said.
The USS Abraham Lincoln was sent to the Middle East in May because of what Washington claimed to be Iran’s “number of worrying and escalating warnings and warnings .” The aircraft carrier did not pass through the Strait of Hormuz, a strategic waterway linking Middle East crude oil producers to crucial world markets.
“For our mission here, which is deterrence, we are in the place we need to be. The people in the know in Iran know that we are more of a deterrent here than we are in the Arabian Gulf because from this position we can reach them and they can’t reach us. In a boxer’s analogy we have got overreach from the spot where we are right now,” Boyle added.
According to Sky News, the aircraft carrier aircraft were said to have hit several Iranian targets in June when Tehran shot down a US spy drone that allegedly breached Iranian airspace and ignored commands to leave the area.
At the time, US President Donald Trump went back to attack 10 minutes after launch, explaining that the deaths of about 150 Iranians would be disproportionate to the loss of an unmanned aerial vehicle.
The United States sent USS carrier Abraham Lincoln strike group and a bombing task force to the Persian Gulf in May, in what National Security Advisor John Bolton described as a supposed clear and unambiguous message to Iran that any attack on the interests of the United States or its allies would be met with relentless force.
In addition, the US proposed the formation of an international maritime coalition and invited several European countries, including Germany, France and the United Kingdom, along with other nations such as Japan, South Korea and Australia, to join them. Although some of them were reluctant to participate in the initiative, the United Kingdom joined the mission.