US Army Vessels Depart for Gaza Coast to Build Offshore Pier for Aid Transfers

The United States Army General Frank S. Besson Jr.-class RoRo vessel USAV SP4 James A. Loux, along with the Runnymede-class large landing craft USAV Matamoros, USAV Monterrey, and USAV Wilson Wharf have departed Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia, and are heading to the Mediterranean Sea to “establish a roll-on, roll-off dock capability that allows ship to shore humanitarian assistance to Gaza,” according to CENTCOM.

The departure has caught some extra attention online as USAV SP4 James A. Loux played “The Imperial March” from Star Wars over its loudspeaker as it was leaving port.

The decision to deploy American forces to the region to build the pier was announced last week by President Joe Biden during the State of the Union address.

The announcement followed a series of airdrops of aid carried out by the US, France, Jordan, and Egypt over Gaza over the week, which comes amid increased reports of famine throughout the region.

US officials have told American media that the port plan will continue to move forward with or without Israeli approval, however, there will be coordination with Israeli forces in regard to security.