Two U.S. B-52 bombers flew a mission over the Middle East on Saturday in an apparent show of force in the region, the fourth of its kind this year, the U.S. Air Force announced Sunday.
Why it matters: The latest flyover comes as the U.S. and Iran struggle to reach an agreement on reviving the 2015 nuclear deal.
- The U.S. has frequently flown such missions at points of high tension with Iran, per AP.
The big picture: The nuclear-capable B-52 departed from a Royal Air Force (RAF) base in Fairford, England, and “flew over the Eastern Mediterranean, Arabian Peninsula and Red Sea before departing the region,” the Air Force said in a statement.
- The U.S. bombers were accompanied by warplanes from the RAF, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, while representatives from 16 nations helped organize logistical support, per the press release.
- Israeli warplanes also accompanied the mission, though their presence was omitted from the U.S. release.
- The Israeli military said that several of its fighter jets joined the mission “through Israel’s skies on their way to the (Persian) Gulf,” adding that working with the U.S. military is critical to “maintaining aerial security in Israel and the Middle East,” AP reported.
- The last flyover mission of this kind was in June, the press release noted.