U.S. military forces pull out of Lebanon
U.S. military personnel, warships and helicopters have left the Lebanon area, and officials “disestablished” Joint Task Force Lebanon on Saturday following the recent pullout of Israeli troops from Lebanon, officials said.
Gone from the eastern Mediterranean Sea is the Norfolk, Va.-based amphibious assault ship USS Wasp, which arrived in the Med on Sept. 6 to relieve the USS Mount Whitney as the command and control ship for support missions to the U.S. Embassy in Beirut, Navy 6th Fleet spokesman Cmdr. Darryn James said.
The guided-missile destroyer USS Barry, in the region since July, also has left, along with the personnel and helicopters from the Army’s 5th Battalion, 158th Aviation Regiment, based out of Giebelstadt, Germany; and the 352nd Special Operations Group, out of RAF Mildenhall, England. Marines from the Marine Corps Security Force, who had been from Naval Station Rota, Spain, started leaving in mid-September.
U.S. European Command assumed control of missions and requirements from U.S. Central Command on Aug. 23.