Three-Carrier Strike Force Exercise to Commence in Western Pacific

Nov 10, 2017, 00:58
Three-Carrier Strike Force Exercise to Commence in Western Pacific

And the USS Ronald Reagan, affiliated with the 7th U.S. Fleet, which had anchored in Busan following joint naval drills with South Korea between October 16 and 20, is cruising along the East Sea.

With more than 21,000 sailors and Marines in the combined task forces, Exercise Valiant Shield will be the largest American maneuvers in the area since similar drills off the coast of Guam in 2006 and 2007.

A spokesperson for the South Korean Ministry of Defense told EFE in Seoul that the three USA aircraft carriers will also carry out maneuvers with the South Korean Navy, closer to North Korean territory, in the Sea of Japan - alternatively called the East Sea in the two Koreas.

The U.S. military said Wednesday that three U.S. aircraft carriers will commence a three-carrier strike force exercise in the Western Pacific on November 11-14.

Both exercises focused on the ability to rapidly bring together forces from three strike groups in response to any regional situation, the navy said.

Units assigned to the strike force will conduct coordinated operations in global waters to demonstrate the U.S. Navy's unique capability to operate multiple carrier strike groups as a coordinated strike force effort.

According to The Associated Press, officials have said recently that the exercise is meant to demonstrate US resolve with allies Japan and South Korea during the ongoing crisis with North Korea.

President Trump stood on the floor of the Unite Nations General Assembly several weeks ago and threatened to "totally destroy" North Korea, repeatedly insinuating the only way to deal with North Korea is through military force.

The statement did not rule out North Korea, who previously threatened to fire ballistic missiles off Guam, an American island in the Western Pacific, which hosts strategic USA military bases.

North Korea, which sees any military drills near its country as a rehearsal for invasion, has not responded to the news of the drills yet, nor has it reacted to any of Trump's remarks during his time in Japan, South Korea and China.

Such large-scale drills serve as a potent reminder of the U.S. ability to rapidly mobilize military force, a capability the Trump administration has been keen to emphasize as Pyongyang races ahead with tests to build a nuclear-tipped missile capable of striking the United States.

The CIA has said North Korea could be only months away from developing the ability to hit the United States with nuclear weapons, a scenario Trump has vowed to prevent.

In a commentary Monday, North Korean state-run media said that "that no one can predict when the lunatic old man of the White House, lost to senses, will start a nuclear war against the DPRK".

The regime added that Trump's very visit to South Korea was meant to "light the fuse for a nuclear war".