Wednesday, June 15, 2016
Are We Spoiling For a Fight?
Yesterday it was CSIS egging the Canadian government on with dire warnings that Vlad Putin was mobilizing Russian forces and war could be imminent.
Today comes word that the US Navy's Third Fleet, its eastern Pacific/home waters navy, is sailing for China's marine backyard, the East and South China Seas.
The Third Fleet, based in San Diego, California, traditionally has confined its operations to the eastern side of the Pacific Ocean's international dateline.
Japan's Nikkei Asian Review quoted the commander of the U.S. Pacific Fleet, Admiral Scott Swift, as saying on Tuesday that the move came in the "context of uncertainty and angst in the region," an apparent reference to China's behavior.
Swift argued that the Navy should utilize the "total combined power" of the 140,000 sailors, over 200 ships and 1,200 aircraft that make up the Pacific Fleet.
The Seventh Fleet consists of an aircraft carrier strike group, 80 other vessels and 140 aircraft. The Third Fleet has more than 100 vessels, including four aircraft carriers.
Pacific Fleet commander, 4-star admiral Scott Swift left no doubt about this mission.
"This is real. The commitment of the 3rd Fleet [operating] forward is real," Swift said, pointing out that the deployment engages the entire Pacific command's 140,000-sailors, 200 ships and 1,200 aircraft.