Danang, Vietnam (CNN)For the first time since the end of the Vietnam War more than four decades ago, a US Navy aircraft carrier will set anchor in the country Monday.
Publicly, the United States has portrayed the four-day visit by the USS Carl Vinson and its contingent of 5,000 sailors and aviators as an historic opportunity to enhance the budding friendship that has emerged between the two former foes.
But, it’s far from a standard port call.
Analysts say the visit by the aircraft carrier to Vietnam is a clear shot at Beijing, designed to counter China’s aggressive island building and militarization in the South China Sea.
“Vietnam has been deeply concerned about China’s pugilistic and aggressive moves in the South China Sea,” said John Kirby, a retired US Navy rear admiral and CNN military and diplomatic analyst.
“They are worried about where China is going, and they have wanted for years now to have a better relationship with the United States.”
READ MORE FROM SOURCE: https://edition.cnn.com/2018/03/03/asia/vietnam-us-uss-vinson-intl/index.html
USS Carl Vinson
Nimitz-class aircraft carrier
USS Carl Vinson is the United States Navy’s third Nimitz-class supercarrier and named for Carl Vinson, a Congressman from Georgia, in recognition of his contributions to the U.S. Navy. Wikipedia
Aircraft carried: 90 fixed wing and helicopters
Speed: 30+ knots (56+ km/h; 35+ mph)
Homeport: NAS North Island San Diego, California
Complement: Ship’s company: 3,200; Air wing: 2,480
Commissioned: 13 March 1982