Tuesday, Aug 12, 2008
Kuwait has activated its Emergency War Plan after an armada of US naval battle groups headed for the Persian Gulf, Middle East Times reports.
The report comes after DEBKAfiles claimed on Monday that the USS Theodore Roosevelt, the USS Ronald Reagan, and the USS Iwo Jima are sailing toward the Persian Gulf to reinforce the US strike forces in the region.
The US naval force is accompanied by a British Royal Navy carrier battle group and a French nuclear hunter-killer submarine.
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The deployment is believed to be the largest naval task force assembled by the United States and its allies in the region since the Persian Gulf war in 1991.
The move comes nearly a week after Operation Brimstone, which saw more than a dozen warships from US, British and French naval forces conduct war games in the Atlantic Ocean in preparation for a possible confrontation with Iran.
Kuwait, located on the coast of Persian Gulf, has placed its military on ‘war alert’ to avoid being caught off-guard by any possible conflict in the region.
“Kuwait was caught by surprise last time, when Iraqi troops invaded the small emirate and routed the Kuwaiti army in just a few hours,” a former US diplomat to Kuwait told the Middle East Times.
Washington and allies accuse Iran, a signatory to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), of pursuing a military nuclear program and have threatened to launch military strikes on Iran should the country continue its uranium enrichment.
The UN nuclear watchdog, International Atomic Energy Agency, has confirmed that Iran’s uranium enrichment does not exceed 3 percent and is therefore within the limits of the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).
The military build-up in the Persian Gulf comes amid speculation that Israel is lobbying to push the Bush administration to launch a joint attack on Iran before President George W. Bush leaves office in January 2009.
This article was posted: Tuesday, August 12, 2008 at 3:17 am