An Air Force B-52 bomber and other aircraft flew over the USS Abraham Lincoln while conducting exercises on Saturday in the Arabian Sea. The move is intended to display that U.S. forces are ready to respond in the region – very near Iran – if necessary.
The Air Force released video of the exercise on Monday:
The Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group and B-52H Stratofortress, from the 20th Expeditionary Bomb Squadron, as well as part of the Bomber Task Force deployed to the area, held joint exercises under the U.S. Central Command over the weekend.
“The demonstration of flexible and adaptable joint operations shows U.S. military forces are prepared to respond to contingencies and defend the interest in the region,” according to U.S. Naval Forces Central Command 5th Fleet.
“With Abraham Lincoln as the flagship, deployed strike group assets include staffs, ships and aircraft of Carrier Strike Group 12 (CSG 12), Destroyer Squadron 2 (DESRON 2), USS Leyte Gulf (CG 55) and Carrier Air Wing 7 (CVW 7),” NAVCENT said.
The Navy has released video of a B-52 flying with Hornets and a Hawkeye over the USS Abraham Lincoln in the Arabian Sea on Saturday pic.twitter.com/8bY0FuXFFt
— Dave Brown (@dave_brown24) June 3, 2019
It’s a pretty awesome feeling to look up and see our jets flying alongside the Air Force bomber,” said Capt. William Reed, Commander of CVW-7, according to an Air Force press release. “The training the air wing conducted with the B-52’s today is an incredible demonstration of how our military can to rapidly join capabilities to enhance our lethality and our ability to respond to any threat when called upon.”
The U.S. last month sent the USS Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group and a bomber task force to the U.S. Central Command region in direct response to Iran’s escalating behavior and threats.
The next day, four B-52 bombers were deployed to the Middle East in preparation for potential attacks that have been threatened by Iran or its allies on U.S. troops.
Its behavior indicates that Iran is clearly not pleased with such actions, which also include removing waivers that would permit U.S. allies to bypass sanctions and export Iranian oil, as well as the official designation of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps as a terrorist organization.
Tensions with Iran have escalated, as Iran recently designated all U.S. troops in the Middle East to be “terrorists,” and last month Iran threatened to attack Israel should U.S. combat troops newly deployed to the region make a move.
Iran has also been difficult when it comes to abiding by the 2015 nuclear accord, which the U.S. left more than a year ago. It has recently made threats to resume high-level uranium enrichment most likely in order to try and develop nuclear weapons unless Britain, France, Germany, China and Russia do not protect Iran from U.S. sanctions.
President Donald Trump last month approved a deployment of up to 1,500 U.S. troops to the Middle East.
Tensions with Iran have heightened, and while Trump has said he doesn’t want to go to war with Iran, he has a military option to send U.S. troops there.