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Pics: US deploys nuclear submarine to Middle East

Ohio-class ballistic-missile submarine USS Henry M. Jackson (SSBN 730) returns to Naval Base Kitsap-Bangor (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Amanda R. Gray/Released)
November 06, 2023

The United States military announced the deployment of a nuclear-powered Ohio-class submarine to U.S. Central Command’s region of responsibility Sunday.

According to Fox News, the nuclear-powered submarine has been deployed to the Middle East in order to deter additional escalation in the region. The U.S. military’s deployment of the submarine comes roughly one month after Hamas terrorists killed about 1,400 Israelis during an attack on Oct. 7, which sparked a war between Israel and Hamas and has threatened to destabilize the region.

U.S. Central Command shared a photo of the Ohio-class submarine Sunday on X, along with a statement, explaining, “On November 5, 2023, an Ohio-class submarine arrived in the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility.”

According to Stars and Stripes, the Department of Defense rarely announces the movements of U.S. submarines. Stars and Stripes noted that the announcement of the submarine deployment appears to be part of the military’s strategy to prevent the current conflict in the Middle East from escalating into a larger-scale war.

Fox News explained that while it is not clear whether the Ohio-class submarine deployed to U.S. Central Command is armed with nuclear ballistic missiles or cruise missiles, Ohio-class submarines are part of the U.S. military’s “nuclear triad” that includes nuclear bombers, land-based ballistic missiles, and nuclear submarines.

READ MORE: 300 more U.S. troops deployed to Middle East

In another Sunday post on X, U.S. Central Command shared photos of a B-1 bomber in the region. B-1 bombers are also capable of carrying nuclear weapons.

“On November 5, 2023, a U.S. Air Force B-1 Lancer begins aerial refueling from a KC-135 Stratotanker assigned to the 912th Expeditionary Air Refueling Squadron while conducting a Bomber Task Force mission over the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility,” U.S. Central Command stated. “The mission was designed to build agility and interoperability between U.S. and partners while demonstrating the ability of the U.S. military to respond to crises and contingencies across theaters.”

According to Fox News, the United States has either redirected or deployed over 17,350 military personnel to U.S. Central Command’s region of responsibility since the Oct. 7 Hamas attacks against Israel. In addition to the personnel, the U.S. military has deployed aircraft carrier strike groups, A-10s, F-15s, F-16s, F-18s, and F-35s, to the Middle East.

Last week, the Pentagon confirmed there have been at least 28 attacks against U.S. forces in Syria and Iraq since Oct. 17. The Pentagon has emphasized that the U.S. military will “do what’s necessary” to protect U.S. military personnel and U.S. interests in the Middle East.

Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin recently stated, “What we’re seeing is a prospect of a significant escalation of attacks on our troops and our people throughout the region. We’re going to do what’s necessary to make sure that our troops are in that position and they were protected and that we have the ability to respond.”