09 January 2008

Ratcheting up the volume

The US Department of Defense has released video footage of the incident between Iranian and American military vessels in the Strait of Hormuz. The incident involved three large American vessels, including the 500 foot long destroyer USS Hopper and a few Iranian speed boats in the 30 mile wide waterway off of the Iranian coast. There is an abbreviated transcript of the tape to be found here, although this claims that the Iranians communicate to the Americans that they "will explode" even these words are extremely unclear on the video and in heavily accented English. (Perhaps the Yanks should learn Farsi if they are going to cruise the Iranian coast.)

The ever strident New York Post thinks that the fact the over matched American vessels didn't sink these imposing Iranian warships means that Americans will die because we backed down. (Who owns this paper anyway?)

Iran is claiming that the video is a fake and that the US ships were guilty of provocation. They may have a point. We do have form (or am I the only one to think of the Gulf of Tonkin?). I, for one, find it hard to believe that incidents similar to this don't happen nearly every day. (What would the US Navy do if the Iranians had armed warships a few miles outside of US waters nearly constantly?) It surely cannot be a coincidence that this gets reported the day before the Captain Codpiece Legacy Tour is launched in Tel Aviv.

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