A Navy spokesman says the U.S.S. Independence will spend a few days in the Arabian Sea before heading back to its home port in Japan.
The U.S.S. Stennis will remain alone in the Gulf for three weeks, when the U.S.S. Eisenhower arrives.
Earlier this year, the U.S. had threatened military force against Iraq to get it to open its presidential sites to UN weapons inspectors. Iraq did so, and tensions have eased.