America said it had despatched a second aircraft carrier group to the Gulf on Wednesday, as the State Department branded Iran the world’s “most active” state sponsor of terrorism.
Robert Gates, the defence secretary, said the deployment of two aircraft carrier battle groups in the Gulf was a “reminder” to Tehran of US determination to defend its interests in the region.
The Abraham Lincoln moved through the Strait of Hormuz on Wednesday to join the Harry Truman, which is not due to leave the Gulf until the weekend.
The nuclear-powered Lincoln takes over as the flagship of a massive multi-nation fleet policing the world’s most important oil transit corridor at a time of increasing tension with Iran.
A US ship fired warning shots on Iranian small craft last week, an incident that pushed the price of crude oil to a record high.
“This deployment has been planned for a long time,” Mr Gates said.
“I don’t think we’ll have two carriers there for a protracted period of time. So I don’t see it as an escalation. I think it could be seen, though, as a reminder.”
You can call it what you want, but we call it messin’ with the kid.
See our last post on Iran.