USS Mahan now headed back to Hampton Roads

The USS Mahan (U.S. Navy)

The USS Mahan (U.S. Navy)

Norfolk, Va. – There are some changes for the Norfolk-based Navy ships off the coast of Syria.

One of those six Norfolk-based ships in the Mediterranean Sea is now headed back home.

Today the USS Mahan started its journey back to Hampton Roads. The ship had been deployed for eight months and was set to be back in Norfolk this week.

Four other destroyers, each capable of launching dozens of tomahawk cruise missiles, remain in the Mediterranean. They are the destroyers Barry, Ramage, Gravely and Stout. The USS San Antonio, an Amphibious Transport Ship, is also there.

The Navy also announced that the Nimitz Carrier Strike Group, along with its four supporting ships, have moved into the Red Sea for now.

They were supposed to head home to the west coast after they were relieved by the Truman Carrier Strike Group in the Arabian Sea.

No formal tasking has been given to them for involvement in Syria, but Navy officials say it’s “a prudent movement of forces should the capabilities of the strike group be needed.”

All of these ship movements are happening as Congress debates whether to authorize military action against Syria.

Today, Secretary of State John Kerry and Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel both testified in front of the Senate, laying out the government’s case on why we should strike Syria and what the potential military options would be.

But at least one local lawmaker has already made up his mind.

Congressman Randy Forbes came out today saying he will vote against intervention in Syria because it does not serve our national security interests and that our ships and troops are not properly funded with the recent budget cuts to the military.

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