Friday, January 13, 2012

U.S.-Iran Tensions Easing, Pentagon Officials Say


From the DoD:

By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Jan. 11, 2012 – Pentagon officials said today they believe tensions between the United States and Iran have cooled in recent days.

Meeting with reporters, Pentagon Press Secretary George Little said the United States has been very clear “that we seek to lower the temperature on tensions with Iran, and we think that things have calmed down a bit in recent days.”

Navy Capt. John Kirby, Pentagon spokesman, said the presence of two U.S. carrier groups in the U.S. Central Command area of operations is just “prudent force posture requirements set by the combatant commander,” and is nothing out of the ordinary.

The two carrier groups in the 5th Fleet region continue the nearly constant U.S. naval deployments to the region since World War II, Kirby noted. “That presence changes all the time,” he said. “It fluctuates based on needs and requirements set by the combatant commander and approved by the Joint Staff and the secretary of defense.”

The presence of the two carriers is not tied to recent strains with Iran, the captain said, pointing out that it takes months for a battle group to train up and deploy.

“I don’t want to leave anybody with the impression that … we’re somehow ‘zorching’ two carriers over there because we’re concerned about what happened … today in Iran,” he said. “It’s just not the case.” Iranian media reported that a scientist from a uranium enrichment plant and his bodyguard were killed today in Tehran.

The fact that two carriers are in the region is not an indication of any specific trouble with respect to Iran, Kirby said...

What relief to hear that tensions are easing! Read the rest of this one here.

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