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Monday, January 7, 2008

Iranian Gnat Boats Provoke US War Ships [UPDATES]

~Snooper~

And that isn't a very wise thing to do, is it? The USN showed restraint and honor during the "confrontation". HT to JWF.

It is going to happen one day or another. I say give it to them.
WASHINGTON - Iranian Revolutionary Guard gunboats harassed three U.S. Navy warships in the Strait of Hormuz Sunday, in what the U.S. military considers a "significant provocative act."

Military officials told NBC News that two US Navy destroyers and one frigate were heading into the Persian Gulf through the international waters of the Strait of Hormuz when five armed "fast boats" of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard approached a high speed, darting in and out of the formation.

At one point a radio message from one of the Iranian boats warned, "You are going to blow up within minutes."

The Navy warships went into defensive mode, radioed the usual warnings to steer clear, and in the end no shots were fired. U.S. military warships believe the Revolutionary Guard boats were "testing our defenses," the officials said.

They are testing our defenses? Laughable, that. We call them piss ants here in Texas.

Al Reuters weighs in

Michelle Malkin:

Fox News:

Another Fox report: US Ships take Defensive Positions...

Jihad Watch:Officers were 'in the process' of giving the order to fire when the Iranians abruptly turned away.

Rags For Treason (NY Slimes):

BBC:

Caliphate News Network (CNN):

Now the fun begins:

Confederate Yankee:
If this account is accurate, these Iranian craft were literally within seconds of being destroyed. The order to fire was on the lips of the U.S. Navy captain as the Iranian boats threatened a suicide attack as they came in, only to turn away at the last second. [...] (his source is AlertNet)
Pat Dollard: Iranian Puddle Pirates Threaten US Navy Ships In Hormuz - Kick Ass Time...Pat has a GREAT picture of the Iranian Navy in action...go see it!

Memeorandum finally has it up over there so we can all feel the love...

This is posted at Digital Journal...go vote it up!

mm.com has more updates as well:

Gateway Pundit weighs in and has some good pics of the Iranian Navy...LOL!!

Threats Watch is worth the visit:

Hot Air has a unique take:

The Astute Bloggers are angry today...

Jenn of the Jungle says Iran is Itchin' for a Bitch Slappin'...

Sister Toldjah is tellin' us somethin'...

Another memeorandum entry...

NYT Lede Blog:
Iran and the United States have been playing chicken for some time now, but reports this morning say that the game turned unusually direct on Sunday....

Power Line:

Retired Navy man Tom Wyld emails us a guide to the Navy's close encounter with Terhan yesterday and assures us it's "only the beginning..." Tom writes:

1. At 5 a.m. local Time Sunday morning, 5 Iranian gun boats charged 3 U.S. Navy ships transiting the Straits of Hormuz. Cruiser PORT ROYAL, destroyer
HOPPER and the frigate INGRAHAM were about to open fire when the boats
turned away. Here's a good source on the engagement. And here's a slow-loading but worthwhile graphic on the incident.

2. In addition to the ships' standard fare (missiles, 5" guns, etc.), theyhave 50-cal BMGs adapted for surface ship use and the Phalanx Close-in-Weapons-System. Originally a missile defense system, Phalanx was upgraded for use against surface targets -- ideal for hostile gunboats. Here's a video of Phalanx.

3. Hear the audio that sounds like a 2-stroke chain saw? Those are 20mm rounds being fired by the Phalanx gatling-style rotary cannon at 3000 rounds a minute.

4. Another ideal response to enterprising gun boat drivers who threaten ships in international waters is the Mark 38 Machine Gun which fires a one-inch-diameter round at about 175 rounds a minute. That's the slower-shooting and obviously more powerful gun in the background in this video (the 50-cal is in the foreground).

5. And remember. It is only January 2008. "Etand 86" (or "Ettehad 86"), Iran's biggest naval exercise, occurs February 2008 and will debut Iran's first home-built diesel-electric submarine and destroyer.

Go Navy.

Consistent with Tom Wyld's observations, Michael Goldfarb characterizes Sunday's close encounter as "an obvious jab at our naval perimeter," and Ralph Peters elaborates.

"This is only the beginning", folks.

The Astute Bloggers weigh in..."The Iranians are fans of instability"...no doubt

The Weekly Standard weighs is as well..