French warship to join US fleet in PG
The French nuclear-powered aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle with air wing on deck.
France has dispatched a nuclear-powered warship to the Persian Gulf as part of an unprecedented buildup of naval and air power in the Persian Gulf and the Indian Ocean.
France's Charles de Gaulle aircraft carrier is now en route to the region and will arrive there at the end of October, when a quarter of the world's nuclear aircraft carriers will gather in the stratgeic waters.
The French carrier is accompanied by two frigates, an attack submarine, a re-fuelling tanker, 3,000 sailors and 27 aircraft.
"The force would help allied navies fight piracy off the coast of Somalia and send jets to support NATO in the skies above Afghanistan," said the commander of the group, Rear Admiral Jean-Louis Kerignard.
This is while new opinion polls show that a vast majority of the French are against any military presence in Afghanistan and want an immediate withdrawal of troops from the war-torn country.
Charles de Gaulle is to join its two US counterparts already stationed in the waters, that is the nuclear-powered super carrier USS Abraham Lincoln and the USS Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group.
USS Lincoln and USS Truman are currently assigned to the Fifth Fleet's area of responsibility, which encompasses the Arabian Sea, the Red Sea, the Gulf of Aden and the eastern coast of Africa south to Kenya, the Gulf of Oman and the Persian Gulf.
The Fifth is the first fleet established in the post-Cold War period and is in charge of several of the most strategic chokepoints on the planet that is the Suez Canal, the Bab Al Mandeb and the Strait of Hormuz.
There are currently over 31 warships docked in the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman, nineteen of them belonging to the United States.
The recent additions will create a formidable armada covering the Arabian Sea from one end to the other.
France and the United States are among the few countries in the world that posses nuclear weapons. Both are also staunch supporters of Israel and have helped Tel Aviv build its nuclear plant.
The US and its NATO allies are escalating military operations across the area, from Asia to Africa to the Middle East.
The theater of operations has recently broadened from South Asia to the Arabian Peninsula with drone and helicopter attacks in Pakistan and air and cruise missile strikes in Yemen.