Fifth destroyer arrives in eastern Mediterranean
NORFOLK, Va. — A fifth Norfolk-based destroyer has arrived in the eastern Mediterranean Sea as President Barack Obama contemplates military intervention in Syria. But according to a defense official, the ship has not joined four others already positioned within striking distance of the war-torn country.
The guided-missile destroyer Stout left Norfolk earlier this month on a regularly scheduled deployment and is expected to eventually relieve one of the ships currently on patrol near the coast of Syria.
The guided missile destroyers Gravely, Mahan, Ramage and Barry, each equipped with dozens of Tomahawk cruise missiles, are likely running through training scenarios as they await word from Washington. The Mahan and Barry each were nearing the end of their deployment when they received orders last week to remain in the eastern Mediterranean.
The Navy typically keeps just two destroyers in the region as part of the service's guided-missile defense program.