The United States Department of Defense has taken significant steps to increase its force posture in the Middle East in response to recent escalations by Iran and its proxy forces in the region.
The measures, which were directed by Secretary of Defense Austin after discussions with President Biden, aim to enhance regional deterrence efforts, protect U.S. forces, and support the defence of Israel.
“Following detailed discussions with President Biden on recent escalations by Iran and its proxy forces across the Middle East Region, today I directed a series of additional steps to further strengthen the Department of Defense posture in the region,” Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said in a statement.
To reinforce capabilities to respond effectively to a variety of contingencies, the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group has been redirected to the Central Command area of responsibility, while the USS Gerald R. Ford Carrier Strike Group remains in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea.
The Pentagon has also deployed the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system and additional Patriot air defence missile system battalions to the Middle East to enhance force protection for U.S. forces and allies in the region, bolstering their defence against potential threats.
Additional forces have been placed on prepare-to-deploy orders as part of prudent contingency planning, improving their readiness and the ability to respond swiftly to any emerging requirements. By taking these actions, the United States aims to strengthen its force posture in the region and protect its interests, while deterring further escalation of conflict.