Monday, January 07, 2008

The First Major Confrontation Of The Coming Iran-US War

Raw Story has a round-up of reports and details about today's confrontation in the sea lane between Iran and Saudi Arabia, between Iranian boats and US warships. The gist is that the Iranians were supposedly trying to provoke the US into attacking them, and the US ships exercised great restraint, despite being threatened by what would appear to be claims of 'terror attacks' on American vessels :
US Navy warships over the weekend came "very close" to shooting at an Iranian Revolutionary Guard vessels, which American officials say provoked US ships in international waters, according to CNN.

"US officials are confirming to CNN that five Iranian Revolutionary guard boats, in their words, 'harassed and provoked' three US Navy warships sailing in the Strait of Hormuz," reports CNN's Barbara Starr. "One of those Iranian boats came within 200 yards of a Navy warship."

The Iranian boats had also transmitted threats via radio, according to officials.

"According to the sources we have spoken to," Starr continued, "the Iranians made threatening moves and threatening radio transmissions. One of those transmissions was...'I am coming at you, you will explode in a couple of minutes.'"

According to the CNN website, "one of the Iranian ships had been dropping white boxes into the water in front of the US ships."

Following the radio transmission, a Navy ship had prepared to fire on an Iranian vessel.

"This official also tells CNN that when that radio transmission was heard, the Navy went to manning its positions, its gun positions on those ships," Starr reports, "and that they were very close to shooting at one of the Iranian boats. In fact the were ready to shoot, the orders had been given when the Iranians suddenly turned away."

No shots were fired, and there were no injuries.

"It is the most serious provocation of this sort that we've seen yet," an unnamed Pentagon official told the Associated Press. He added that the Iranian boats turned away "literally at the very moment that US forces were preparing to open fire."

Go Here For The Full Story

If a war between Iran and the United States breaks out this year, as many NeoCons are anticipating, and clearly fantasising about, this incident will be regarded as one of the sparks that began the major hostilities.