The USS McCain, named after the father and grandfather of Senator John McCain, was dispatched Monday from its port in Japan and ordered to sail for Korea.
The 505-foot guided-missile destroyer carries the U.S. Navy’s advanced Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense System, a sophisticated radar system designed to target enemy missiles and launch precision rockets to intercept and destroy them.
The Navy also shifted the SBX-1, a $900million floating radar platform that has even more powerful equipment for tracking missiles.
The two pieces of Navy hardware join an unknown number of F-22 stealth fighter jets that the US Air Force sent to South Korea as both a show of force against the North and a pledge of support for its allies in Seoul.
The Air Force has previously flown B-2 Spirit and B-52 Stratofortress bombers over the Korean peninsula with the same aim.
South Korean officials, meanwhile, responded to threats from the North Korean leader Kim Jong-un by saying that any attack would receive a ‘strong response.’