HMS Queen Elizabeth stands out to be the UK’s first new carrier in a generation and has successfully fulfilled her first battle operations with an array of attacks against Islamic State, Daesh.
The commander of the UK Carrier Strike Group, Commodore Steve Moorhouse said that the HMS Queen Elizabeth’s pioneer mission counter to the Islamic State will be evoked and recognized as an important event in the 50-year lifespan of this very vessel. These strikes and attacks set a fresh new chapter in the current deployment activities. He also added, “To date we have delivered diplomatic influence on behalf of the UK through a series of exercises and engagements with our partners- now we are ready to deliver the hard punch of maritime-based air power against a shared enemy.”
The prime source of maritime and air power to depart the UK in a generation is the Carrier Strike Group 21, whose first operational deployment is initiated by its expedition to the Mediterranean. This joint collaborative venture comprises resources and support from the Royal Navy, Royal Air Force, U.S. Marine Corps and U.S. Navy, with American F-35B fighters onboard Queen Elizabeth along with a US destroyer in the team of escorts.
These attacks by HMS Queen Elizabeth and the carrier strikes by the US aircraft from the deck of an associated vessel mark the first combat missions ever since the American forces sprang from HMS Victorious during World War II.
The Royal Navy’s last engagement in a maritime strike was in 2011, when the UK armed forces collaborated with NATO for the elimination of Libyan air force and prevent the attacks by the dictator Muammar Gaddafi. These efforts assisted in allaying the violent government suppression and eventually overthrew the regime, brewing conditions for a 10-year civil war.