U.S. Official: Deployment of Carrier Strike Group to Middle East to Stave Off ‘Potential Preparations by Iranian forces’
by Jordan Hilger, Worthy News Correspondent
(Worthy News) - U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton says a carrier strike group led by the USS Abraham Lincoln recently deployed to the Persian Gulf is “in response to a number of troubling and escalatory indications and warnings” from Iran.
Joined by a fleet of Air Force bombers, U.S. officials hope the naval unit’s presence will deter Iran from its threat of closing the Strait of Hormuz, a crucial waterway for Middle East oil trade that sees 20% of the world’s oil supplies pass through its waters at one time or another.
In the developing tit-for-tat between the two countries, the U.S. declared its intention at the end of April to penalize customers of Iranian oil, hoping to bring Iranian oil exports to zero, a move preceded by a State Department memo earlier that month designating the Iranian Revolutionary Guard as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO).
The statement by Bolton goes on to read that the carrier group is a demonstration of U.S. readiness “to respond to any attack, whether by proxy, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, or regular Iranian forces," echoing avowals by other U.S. officials that blame for the actions of Shi’ite militia groups throughout the Middle East, like Hezbollah in Lebanon or the Houthis in Yemen, will be laid at the feet of Iran.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, in an interview with Fox News’s Chris Wallace on April 28th, warned that the Trump administration’s “policy of maximum pressure” against the Islamic Republic was “dragging the United States into a conflict,” along with U.S. allies Israel, Saudi Arabia, and United Arab Emirates.