by Staff Writers
Washington (AFP) Jan 28, 2012
The US military plans to send a large floating base for commando teams to the Middle East amid rising tensions with Iran and intensifying fighting in Yemen, The Washington Post reported Saturday.
Citing unspecified procurement documents, the newspaper said the Navy is converting an aging warship it had planned to decommission into a makeshift staging base for the commandos in response to requests from the US Central Command.
Unofficially dubbed a "mothership," the floating base could accommodate smaller high-speed boats and helicopters commonly used by Navy SEALs, the report said.
Special operations forces are a key part of President Barack Obama's strategy to make the military leaner and more agile as the Pentagon confronts at least $487 billion in spending cuts over the next decade, the paper noted.
Mike Kafka, a spokesman for the Navys Fleet Forces Command, declined to elaborate on the floating bases purpose or to say where, exactly, it will be deployed in the Middle East, The Post said.
Other Navy officials acknowledged that they were moving with unusual haste to complete the conversion and send the mothership to the region by early summer, the report said.
Navy documents indicate that it could be headed to the Persian Gulf, where Iran has threatened to block the Strait of Hormuz, The Post noted.
Naval Warfare in the 21st Century
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Brazil modernizing navy with new inventory
Rio De Janeiro (UPI) Jan 17, 2012
Brazil is modernizing its navy with new acquisitions to continue expansion of the naval forces' responsibilities in regular patrolling of lakes and rivers, a role normally played by the coast guard and other security arms of national defense. Brazil is also building up its submarine construction program with French help and will build at least one nuclear-powered submarine under present ... read more
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