2,000 U.S. Marines are deployed on board a flotilla near Egypt, aircraft carrier USS Eisenhower is already west of Crete, fighters and refueling aircraft have been stationed in the Gulf, and dozens of planes and special forces are deployed in Cyprus in case of a flare-up between Israel, Hezbollah and Iran

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Three weeks after the Hamas attack that prompted the current war in Gaza, the United States, Britain and other Western countries have amassed offensive, defensive and logistical forces in the Eastern Mediterranean.

The breadth of deployment attests to multiple considered scenarios, including a multidirectional missile attack on Israel; a second, northern front between Israel and Hezbollah; escalation into a regional war; and, finally, consideration of the need to evacuate thousands of Western citizens.

The speed with which these forces have been deployed attests to the lessons the Biden administration learned from the unexpected fall of the Afghan government in the summer of 2021 and the ensuing panicked retreat from Kabul.

Based on open source data, 20 U.S. heavy transport aircraft and about 50 leased civilian transport aircraft – Israeli as well as foreign – have been transporting equipment and armaments from bases in the United States and Europe, and from other logistical centers, since the airlift to Israel started following the October 7 terror attack on southern Israel.

U.S. military reported that the planes carried artillery shells and interceptors for air defense systems to Israel. Additional publications by the Israeli Defense Ministry revealed other military equipment arrived at Ben-Gurion Airport, Ramon Airport (near Eilat) and the Nevatim air force base in southern Israel.

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