BREMERTON, Wash. (AP) - The aircraft carrier John Stennis departs Bremerton Monday afternoon for another tour of duty in the Mideast.
Defense Secretary Leon Panetta spoke to the crew Wednesday and thanked them for making a quick turnaround and returning to action four months earlier than expected.
The Stennis returned in March from a seven-month deployment that included missions in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Panetta says the Pentagon is keeping the Stennis and another carrier in the Persian Gulf to deal with any contingency that develops in the Middle East.
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