The United States has pulled the USS Theodore Roosevelt from the Persian Gulf, marking the first time since 2007 the U.S. Navy has had no aircraft carrier in the region. While the administration is claiming the carrier needs to “undergo maintenance” and the move was a result of mandatory budget cuts, it is undoubtedly a show of weakness and invites further aggression.
“Without that carrier, there will be a detriment to our capability there,” Admiral John Richardson recently said during a hearing in front of the Senate Armed Services Committee.
The USS Theodore Roosevelt, a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier that has played a pivotal role in the half-hearted military against the Islamic State (ISIS) since August 2014, is slated to be replaced in the region by the USS Harry S. Truman, which is based out of Norfolk, Virginia. The Pentagon would not offer a comment or explanation as to why the ships were not rotated out as to ensure no lapse in a U.S. presence in region would occur.
The development comes as Russian President Vladimir Putin has tested the resolve of President Obama and NATO, significantly escalating the Syrian civil war by ordering airstrikes on U.S.-backed rebels.