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calendar   Tuesday - April 28, 2015

Petulant Iran Engineers High Seas Incident

Iran Fires At, Boards, Seizes Container Ship

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Iranian Navy vessels fired shots at and boarded a Marshall Islands-flagged commercial container ship in the Strait of Hormuz Tuesday, a senior defense official told Fox News.

The Maersk Tigris ship—originally heading to Jebel Ali in the United Arab Emirates, is now being escorted by the Iranian Navy into waters near Bandar Abbas, home of Iran’s largest Navy base.

The USS Farragut, a guided missile destroyer, is making “best speed” en route to the area and has dispatched a helicopter to get a closer look, the official said.

Col. Steve Warren, a Pentagon spokesman, said the cargo ship’s master had initially refused an Iranian order to move further into Iranian waters, but after the warning shots were fired the Maersk Tigris complied.

The cargo ship, which had more than 30 people aboard, was directed to waters near Larak Island, he said.

The Iranian vessels, numbering five or six, were with the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps Navy, Warren said.

The Iranian naval base is located at 27.141009, 56.078583 on any digital world map. Larak Island is the larger of the two islands that blocks Bandar Abbas from the Strait of Hormuz off the tip of the UAE.

Several Iranian patrol craft intercepted the Tigris at 5:05 a.m. eastern time as it traveled “on an internationally recognized maritime route,” according to a statement from the Office of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

“The IRGCN contacted the vessel and directed the Maersk Tigris’ master to divert further into Iranian Waters. The master initially declined and one of the IRGCN patrol craft fired shots across the Maersk Tigris’ bow. The master then complied and diverted under escort by the IRGCN vessels,” according to the statement.

In response to a distress call, the U.S. Navy ordered the USS Farragut, an Arleigh Burke Class Guided Missile Destroyer, “to proceed at best speed to the nearest location of the Maersk Tigris,” while reconnaissance aircraft kept track of the diverted vessel, according to the statement.

The U.S. military has been in contact with officials from the Maersk shipping company, who say that the Iranians boarded the Tigris.

The confrontation occurred as the U.S. Senate prepared to take up legislation aimed at giving lawmakers more of a say on President Barack Obama’s proposed nuclear deal with Iran.

While the Marshall Islands are a sovereign state, “the United States has full authority and responsibility for security and defense of the Marshall Islands,” according to the State Department.

The semi-official Iranian news agency Fars reported that Iran had taken control of a U.S. ship and its 34 crew for “trespassing” in its territorial waters, Reuters said.

A convoy of Iranian cargo ships was heading toward Yemen last week, and was joined by two Iranian warships on Friday. The U.S. Navy deployed the USS Theodore Roosevelt supercarrier, among other vessels, to also sail to the area. Pentagon officials would not say the action was designed to pose a direct affront to Iran, believed to be smuggling weapons or other supplies to the Houthis currently waging war against the government of Yemen. But the Iranian ships turned back toward their home ports on Friday, and as of Tuesday morning had rounded the northeast corner of Oman.

Tuesday’s standoff also comes amid shaky negotiations between the Obama administration and the Iranian government over its nuclear program. Obama did not discuss the incident during a press conference Tuesday afternoon with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

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So, whatcha gonna do now, Ochoomster?

UPDATE: He ain’t gonna do fuckin’ nuttin’.
Despite the fact the the USA has a treaty specified duty to defend the Marshall Islands, gutless shysters at the Pentagon have determined that the US has no duty to defend, or rescue, Marshall Islands people or property. Even though those same treaties specifically deny the Marshalls this kind of behavior. Betcha there’s lots of head scratching in the South Pacific today! All these years, happily being an ally, never really needing Uncle Sam but glad he was around ... and now ... bazinga!

news link.
blog link.

Yup, you got it right: he just threw an entire country under the bus.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 04/28/2015 at 10:27 PM   
Filed Under: • Iranplanes, trains, tanks, ships, machines, automobiles •  
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Oh, and here's some kind of visitor flag counter thingy. Hey, all the cool blogs have one, so I should too. The Visitors Online thingy up at the top doesn't count anything, but it looks neat. It had better, since I paid actual money for it.
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