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Jan-08-2008 05:47printcomments

Gates Urges Iran to Disavow Aggressors at Sea

The Iranian boats left after the U.S. Navy ships were preparing to open fire, officials said. No shots were fired.

USS Port Royal
The guided missile cruiser USS Port Royal (CG 73) (foreground).
Photo courtesy: DOD

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) - U.S. Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates is calling on Iran to disavow the actions of five high-speed boats that reportedly threatened to blow up three U.S. Navy warships in international waters in the Strait of Hormuz.

Defense officials said five Iranian Revolutionary Guard high-speed craft approached the USS Port Royal, USS Hopper and USS Ingraham as they were entering the Persian Gulf in yesterday morning, maneuvering aggressively, threatening the ships via bridge-to-bridge radio and dropping objects into the water in the general path of one of the ships.

“I found the action by the Iranians quite troubling, actually, and a matter of real concern,” Gates said. “This is a very volatile area, and the risk of an incident escalating is real. I think that it is a reminder that there is a very unpredictable government in Tehran. And it would be nice to see the Iranian government disavow this action and say that it won’t happen again.”

The Iranian boats left after the U.S. Navy ships were preparing to open fire, officials said. No shots were fired.

“It’s just a reminder of how volatile the situation is in the Gulf, and when the Iranians act aggressively like this they create circumstances that can be very dangerous,” Gates said.

Story by: Fred W. Baker III Courtesy: American Forces Press Service

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Pat January 9, 2008 9:56 am (Pacific time)

Vic, guess you don't remember the USS Cole?

Vic January 9, 2008 8:04 am (Pacific time)

Yeah , those speedboats looked pretty menacing..I have seen boats like that at Detroit Lake and was terrified! No wonder those sailors in those flimsy Navy warships were so worried! What a load of crap! Lucky the Iranians didnt break out the kayak brigade!

Neal Feldman January 9, 2008 7:04 am (Pacific time)

And doing so against orders would have the military driving foreign policy. It would have resulted in many courts martial. Or do you think that US foreign policy should be dictated by trigger happy yokels in the military instead of by careful consideration by the civilian govt of the US? Ah well...

JB January 8, 2008 5:02 pm (Pacific time)

The US ships should have taken the opportunity for some target practice.

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