newsU.S.-Israel Relations

Pentagon sends Israel weapons, redirects aircraft carrier to region

The decision "underscores the United States' ironclad support for the Israel Defense Forces and the Israeli people," said U.S. Secretary of Defense Llyod Austin.

“USS Gerald R. Ford” steams in the Ionian Sea, Oct. 4, 2023. Photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jacob Mattingly/U.S. Navy.
“USS Gerald R. Ford” steams in the Ionian Sea, Oct. 4, 2023. Photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jacob Mattingly/U.S. Navy.

The Pentagon announced on Sunday that it’s sending “additional equipment and resources, including munitions” to the Israel Defense Forces while redirecting a Carrier Strike Group to the Eastern Mediterranean.

The security assistance “will begin moving today and arriving in the coming days,” said U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin and the U.S. Department of Defense, adding that the decision was in response to the “abhorrent terrorist attack by Hamas.”

The steps followed detailed discussions with U.S. President Joe Biden. The White House confirmed earlier on Sunday that “the president directed additional support for Israel in the face of this unprecedented terrorist assault by Hamas.”

Austin said that the United States would also send the USS Gerald R. Ford Carrier Strike Group to the region, including the USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN-78), the world’s largest aircraft carrier and the newest in the U.S. fleet, the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Normandy and four Arleigh-Burke-class guided-missile destroyers.

“We have also taken steps to augment U.S. Air Force F-35, F-15, F-16 and A-10 fighter aircraft squadrons in the region,” Austin said.

“Strengthening our joint force posture, in addition to the materiel support that we will rapidly provide to Israel, underscores the United States’ ironclad support for the Israel Defense Forces and the Israeli people,” he added.

“My team and I will continue to be in close contact with our Israeli counterparts to ensure they have what they need to protect their citizens and defend themselves against these heinous terrorist attacks.”

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