US Sends Carrier Strike Group, Bombers to Middle East to Target Iran

Bolton says US preparing to respond to an attack

One day after the White House started hyping the deployment of the USS Abraham Lincoln and its carrier strike group to the Middle East as a message to Iran, the plan now also includes the deployment of a bomber taskforce into the area.

Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan blamed Iran for all of this, demanding that Iran “cease all provocation.” It’s not clear Iran has done any actual provocation in the first place, though the US has made claims of Iran potting to attack US forces.

Iran, however, has denied that this is the case, noting that the US Navy announced the deployment of the carrier strike group nearly a month ago, and it was only when it got to a White House announcement this week that the narrative changed to an imminent military threat.

Bolton suggested the deployment was to “deter” Iran, though the US deployments are of attack forces, not defensive units, and Bolton’s narrative also includes using “unrelenting force” against Iran for any threat to US interests anywhere in the region.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.