Footage showing the awe-inspiring United States Navy USS George H.W. Bush supercarrier docked outside Israel's northern Haifa port was released by the IDF on Saturday evening.The images depict from multiple viewpoints an Israeli military helicopter landing on the vast American vessel. Measuring at 1,092 feet long and carrying an estimated 5,000 member crew, the supercarrier is an "important part of the coalition campaign against the Islamic State," the IDF said in an statement.
The last time a US Navy vessel of such capacity docked in an Israeli harbor was roughly 17 years ago, making the visit a special one that conveys the strong cooperation between the US and Israel in military- and security-related issues. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will visit the aircraft carrier on Monday, according to a statement released by his office, following an invitation by the US Embassy in Tel Aviv.The prime minister will reportedly be accompanied by US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman. One of a ten-ship fleet, currently the largest warships in the world, the carrier is named after the 41st President of the United States and has recently been involved in strikes against ISIS in both Iraq and Syria. The warship, which cost a hefty $4.5 billion, is expected to make up part of the US Navy's armory for the coming 50 years and has a capacity of 6,000 Navy personnel. The ship is powered by two nuclear reactors, meaning that the ship can sail for over 20 years without needing to refuel.The ship, which is too large to actually enter Haifa port, is expected to remain in the country for four days with crew members given opportunities to tour Israel during their stay.Anna Ahronheim contributed to this report.