Britain had to plead with US to take part in Iran flotilla

Discussion in 'West Asia & Africa' started by asianobserve, Feb 8, 2012.

  1. asianobserve

    asianobserve Elite Member Elite Member

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    By James Kirkup, Deputy Political Editor
    The Telegraph
    06 Feb 2012

    Defence sources have revealed that the Americans only relented and allowed a Royal Navy frigate to join the mission following an intervention from Nicolas Sarkozy, the French president.

    The revelation that US defence chiefs saw little military value in UK participation will raise new questions about Britain’s international clout after Coalition defence cuts.

    Amid rising tensions in the region, the Royal Navy last month deployed HMS Argyll, a Type 23 frigate, to the Gulf.
    The ship accompanied a US carrier strike group made up of an aircraft carrier with a full complement of fighters, a heavy cruiser and several destroyers.

    A French frigate, the La Motte-Picquet, was also part of the flotilla which sailed through the Straits of Hormuz. Iran has staged wargames in the area and threatened to block the straits, a vital supply route for oil exports.

    The US also has another carrier strike group in the Gulf and a third heading for the region.

    The disparity in vessel numbers means the British and French presence in the flotilla was of greater diplomatic than military significance.

    The question of allied participation in the naval operation is understood to have triggered concern in Whitehall and led to a sudden shift in Britain’s stance.

    British ministers initially signalled they would accept the Washington’s conclusion that did not need allies to take part.

    But the British position changed after Mr Sazkozy insisted to the US that a French warship must be present in the flotilla.

    Sources said that Philip Hammond, the defence secretary, concluded that if the French were sending a ship, Britain must do so too. His decision to was then endorsed by David Cameron, the Prime Minister.

    Failing to take part when the French were doing so might have raised questions about the Special Relationship, which has come under doubt during Barack Obama’s presidency. Mr Obama last year described France as America’s closest ally.

    A diplomatic source revealed that US commanders originally planned for an all-American naval operation, any only relented after protests from European leaders.

    The source said: “The Americans originally planned to do it alone. They were clear that they saw no military advantage in having European ships taking part.

    But after the President insisted that France had to be represented, ministers decided that “Britain must participate too, regardless of the military importance.”

    The source described the approach of France and Britain as “classic willy-waving”, accusing the two countries of posturing to conceal their military irrelevance to the confrontation with Iran.

    A Whitehall confirmed the sequence of events and described the international negotiations over the flotilla as “humiliating” for Britain.

    After the French intervention, the UK Government “was basically forced to plead with Washington for the Navy to be allowed to tag along. “ said the source.



    Britain had to plead with US to take part in Iran flotilla - Telegraph
     
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  3. Godless-Kafir

    Godless-Kafir DFI Buddha Senior Member

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    What a sick attitude the british have, everything is about being Jingo and chest thumping to show of to the world. I guess if you take off all the pride from Britian they will all commit mass suicide. This is the same attitude that shows of after giving Aid, this is childish way of looking at the world. There is no maturity or unconditional service to humanity.
     
  4. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    The Britain - French are still adversaries.

    The twain shall never meet!
     
  5. asianobserve

    asianobserve Elite Member Elite Member

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    They want to punch above their weight... same with France. The latter got the lucky break in Lybia when Uncle allowed France to stage play the ops complete with unchallenged nuclear powered aircraft carrier... Sarko is just a better performer than Cameron.
     
  6. Godless-Kafir

    Godless-Kafir DFI Buddha Senior Member

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    Its a matter of pride for them, when they are now struggling to stay relevant any longer.

    The Sun never sets in the British empire, now it does not even raise for 8hours and its freezeing there. Soon the ice age will reappear in another 5,000years their History wont even be remembered and they may get pushed into the annals.
     
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  7. sob

    sob Moderator Moderator

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    The Brits and the French will have to deploy more assets abroad, then only will they be taken seriously even by the Americans.

    in the present context one Frigate each means that the Americans will have to baby sit the French and the British.
     
  8. p2prada

    p2prada Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    And now both are irrelevant. My how the tables have turned. :rofl::laugh:
     

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