Thursday, June 09, 2016

Cast a Giant Shadow

The American Sixth Fleet is boasting two carrier strike groups in the Mediterranean Sea. Look fast before they go away.

Behold the power!

The U.S. military will have two aircraft carriers in the Mediterranean Sea this month ahead of a NATO summit in Warsaw as Washington seeks to balance Russian military activities and accelerate its fight against Islamic State militants.

The USS Harry S. Truman aircraft carrier will hand off to the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower when it arrives en route to the Gulf, allowing the Truman to head back to the United States after an extended eight-month deployment, Navy officials on board the Truman said.

In the Cold War the 6th Fleet was huge and focused on the Mediterranean.

Now (and I don't know when that changed), the fleet has responsibility for that sea and the entire eastern Atlantic and extensions, plus part of the Indian Ocean south of 5th Fleet in the Middle East.

Now the fleet has a command ship and four ballistic missile defense destroyers assigned permanently. Any ships it has are basically ships transiting through the area on the way to or from the Middle East.

So this news is meant to highlight that a carrier group going to the Middle East and a carrier returning home from the Middle East are temporarily assigned to 6th Fleet.

We even launched air strikes on ISIL from the Truman strike group in the Mediterranean Sea.

The carriers will loudly sail around but will soon be gone, maintaining the illusion that the mighty Sixth Fleet still patrols the Mediterranean Sea.