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US aircraft carrier seen as barometer of tensions with Iran

US aircraft carrier seen as barometer of tensions with Iran

2019/05/20 | 22:15

(Hatha al-Youm | Iraq News)- Ordered by the White House to the Arabian Gulf, the USS

Abraham Lincoln aircraft carrier has become a 100,000-ton barometer of the

tensions between Iran and the US, AP reported.So far, the Lincoln and its accompanying ships have yet to

enter the gulf through the Strait of Hormuz. It has been filmed by the US Navy

on Friday carrying out exercises with other American warships in the Arabian

Sea, which is over 1,000 kilometers (620 miles) away.While US military officials aren’t publicly explaining the

delay, it may be to calm nerves before the ships pass through the strait, a

narrow waterway where Iran often shadows American vessels.In December, about 30 Iranian Revolutionary Guard vessels

trailed the USS John C. Stennis aircraft carrier and its strike group through

the strait as Associated Press journalists on board watched. One small vessel

launched what appeared to be a commercial-grade drone to film the US ships.Other transits have seen the Iranians fire rockets away from

American warships or test-fire their machine guns. The Guard’s small fast boats

often cut in front of the massive carriers, running dangerously close to

running into them.The Guard has perfected so-called “swarm attacks” on

carriers, with bomb-carrying drones and sea-to-sea and surface-to-sea missiles

in its arsenal.Iran has increasingly threatened to close the strait if it

is unable to sell its own crude oil to the global market as a result of the US

pressure campaign following Washington’s withdrawal a year ago from the 2015

nuclear deal between Tehran and world powers.Any transit through the strait also carries the risk of a

catastrophic mistake by either side spinning out of control. In 1988, a US

warship accidentally shot down an Iranian commercial airliner, killing all 290

on board.











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