USS Harry S. Truman launches first missions against ISIS

USS Harry S. Truman launches first missions against ISIS
© U.S. Navy photo

The USS Harry S. Truman launched its first missions against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) on Tuesday, according to the U.S. Navy. 

"Warfighting is the priority; that's why we are here," Navy Rear Adm. Bret Batchelder, commander of Carrier Strike Group 8, said in a statement. 

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The Truman recently arrived in the Persian Gulf to begin striking ISIS in Iraq and Syria, ending a several-month U.S. carrier gap in the region after the USS Theodore Roosevelt left in October. 

The French carrier Charles De Gaulle arrived in the Gulf in November, however, and began striking ISIS targets. 

"Dual carrier operations with the French allow us to maximize our firepower and provide a unique opportunity to further progress against ISIL," Batchelder said, using a different name for ISIS. 

"It validates our abilities to successfully operate as an international coalition while conducting very dynamic operations," he said. 

Capt. Fredrick Luchtman, commander of Carrier Air Wing 7, said having both carriers there enabled one to fly sorties, and the other to prepare for the next day.  

"The carriers can then swap, which allows us to put more sorties in country while we partner in this operation," Luchtman said.