U.S. Aircraft Carrier, Deployed in Mideast to Fight ISIS, Arrives in Israel

USS George H.W. Bush, which was previously deployed in the Persian Gulf, is staffed with 5,700 crew members and dozens of aircraft

JACK GUEZ/AFP

An American aircraft carrier, the USS George H.W. Bush, docked in northern Israel on Saturday. It has been deployed in the region as part of the U.S.-led coalition’s fight on ISIS. This is the first time in 17 years that such a vessel visits the country.

Prior to arriving at Haifa’s shore, the ship was deployed at the Persian Gulf before crossing the Suez Canal. It has been involved in the fight on ISIS since the beginning of the year.

The USS George H.W. Bush is considered to be among the world’s most expensive weaponry, with construction estimated at more than $6 billion. It is staffed with a crew of about 5,700 sailors and pilots and carries dozens of aircraft, including warplanes, helicopters and drones, as well as other weapons.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and U.S. Ambassador David Friedman will tour the USS George H.W. Bush together on Monday. Senior Israeli defense officials are slated to visit the warship as well, and U.S. naval commanders will visit the shore. The press will be given a tour of the carrier on Monday too.

Earlier this week, a joint drill took place during which Israeli helicopters practiced landing on board the warship, the IDF said in a statement.