Discussion in 'West Asia & Africa' started by W.G.Ewald, Dec 26, 2011.
Iran's navy warns foreign copter away from drill - Boston.com
Iran begins naval drills in Strait of Hormuz - Middle East - Al Jazeera English
If it is in international waters, no country has exclusive rights!
Beware USA ...you are dealing with a BadAss here ...
more like a JACKASS!
Its a standard procedure of spying on Military exercises!!
It would be better to send AWACS planes were conducting reconnaissance flights to collect information. Whenveer Russia conduct larg post-Soviet military exercises, US and NATO sends AWACS and other assets to monitor.
A simple cat and mouse game
I don't think NATO wants to risk something that sensitive to Iran. Remember that recently they managed to get an almost undamaged RQ-170 Sentinel. The Sentinel was supposed to be totally invisible to radar or any other counter-system. Kind of reminds me of Bosnia war where F-117s (the raptors of that time) were shot down with ex-Soviet SAMs.
Now imagine if NATO sent an AWACs and that got knocked out of the sky. US cannot even claim it and at the same time cannot declare war because of international area.
Iran threatens to close key Gulf oil route - World news - Mideast/N. Africa - Iran - msnbc.com
I read somewhere that Iran had practised the blocking of the Straits of Hormuz.
America warns Iran that blocking oil route will 'not be tolerated'
Tensions mount between US and Iran as Fifth Fleet warns that any attempt to block Strait of Hormuz will elicit naval response.....
guardian.co.uk, Wednesday 28 December 2011 18.35 GMT .
Tensions between the United States and Iran have dangerously ratcheted up as naval officials with America's Fifth Fleet warned any attempt by Iran to close a strategically vital oil route through the Strait of Hormuz would "not be tolerated".
The news heightens a sense of growing crisis in the Persian Gulf after two days of threats by senior Iranian figures that they might shut down the important trade route in response to any future international sanctions against the country's oil exports.
"Anyone who threatens to disrupt freedom of navigation in an international strait is clearly outside the community of nations: any disruption will not be tolerated," US Fifth Fleet spokeswoman Lt Rebecca Rebarich told the Associated Press. She added that the US Navy was "...always ready to counter malevolent actions to ensure freedom of navigation."
The Fifth Fleet is based in the tiny Gulf state of Bahrain and commands a huge flotilla of American naval might, including air craft carriers.
That US response came shortly after the head of the Iranian Navy warned that the country could easily close the Strait of Hormuz if it desired to do so.
"Closing the Strait of Hormuz is very easy for Iranian naval forces... it will be easier than drinking a glass of water," Admiral Habibollah Sayyari told the state-run Press TV channel. However, he did add that Iran currently had no plans to carry out the act.
But the war of words theoretically raises the prospect of a naval conflict in the Gulf between Iran and the United States. Sayyari's statement came just a day after Iran's vice president, Mohamed Reza Rahimi, also threatened to use force to shut the waterway and cut off a flow of oil that many see as vital for the world economy.
They also come as Iran is conducting large naval exercises in the region in what many analysts see as a show of force. The war games stretch over a large area of the Gulf, including the Strait of Hormuz, and could easily bring Iranian ships and submarines into close proximity with US forces.
Iran is reacting to what it says is an unfair campaign to punish it for its domestic nuclear programme, which it claims is peaceful but which many believe is actually aimed at creating a weapon.
The US Congress has passed a bill banning dealings with the Iran Central Bank which President Barack Obama has said he will sign. If that happens the new US law could hit foreign companies that deal with Iran's central bank in order to buy oil, striking a blow at a commodity that makes up about 80% of its foreign revenues and is vital for the functioning of the Iranian economy.
The oil markets are already jittery about the latest developments. As the oil price ticked up in the face of the bellicose comments Saudi officials said that they would release more oil in the event of any crisis to make up for a loss of Iranian crude. That effort seemed to help calm oil traders' fears.
The current rising tensions are also merely the latest in a series of serious spats between Iran and Western nations. Earlier this month Iran captured an unmanned US spy drone, broadcasting pictures of the downed craft that created headlines around the world and represented a major intelligence coup. In November violent crowds in Tehran stormed the British embassy and ransacked offices and residences. That led to the closure of the embassy and the expulsion of Iranian diplomats from Britain.
Iranian media has carried detailed reports of how it might act to close the Strait, deploying a mix of ships, submarines, missiles and torpedoes. Few experts believe that any Iranian force could stand up to the US military but any form of armed conflict would likely trigger a global diplomatic and economic crisis.
It would also play out against a backdrop of concerted Israeli efforts to warn against Iran's nuclear programme, which the nation believes represents a threat to its existence. Isreali military and political figures have
consistently threatened that armed strikes against Iran might be needed to stop the development of an Iranian nuclear bomb.
America warns Iran that blocking oil strait will 'not be tolerated' | World news | guardian.co.uk
[h=1]Iran's Hormuz Threat[/h][h=2]An attack on oil traffic would deserve a military response.[/h]
So now we know the kind of sanctions that hit Iran's regime where it really hurts. The U.S. and Europe are at last mustering the gumption to target Iran's multibillion-dollar oil industry, and almost immediately Tehran is threatening to bring Persian Gulf tankers to a halt.
"If they impose sanctions on Iran's oil exports, then even one drop of oil cannot flow from the Strait of Hormuz,'' said Iran's first vice president, Mohammad-Reza Rahimi, on Tuesday. On a typical day about 13 tankers carry 15.5 million barrels of oil through the strait, which is about 21 miles wide at its narrowest point.
Admiral Habibollah Sayari, who runs Iran's navy, added yesterday that "shutting the strait for Iran's armed forces is really easyâ€”or as we say [in Iran] easier than drinking a glass of water." Oil prices had surged after an Iranian lawmaker issued a vaguer threat last week, and they kept rising before falling yesterday.
As a military matter, this is mostly bluster. If it struck first, Iran could sink a few ships and do some damage. But Iran is no military match for the U.S. and its allies in the Persian Gulf. The Pentagon and the U.S. Navy's Fifth Fleet both sent that message to Tehran yesterday. "Any disruption," the Bahrain-based U.S. fleet said in an email, "will not be tolerated."
Yet the Iranian tantrum is educational. Iran knows that Western leaders fear the economic and political impact of higher oil prices, not least with elections coming in 2012 for President Obama and French President Nicolas Sarkozy. Iran's leaders are trying to see if they can intimidate those leaders into backing down. The Western response should be to tighten sanctions further to show such tactics won't work.
The episode is also a reminder, the latest in a series, of the Iranian regime's character and intentions. In October, the U.S. said it uncovered an Iranian plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador in Washingtonâ€”also wholly in character for the world's leading state sponsor of terrorism. This is not a mature and rational actor that can be contained if it gets nuclear weapons. President Obama promised there would be consequences for the assassination plot, but there have been none.
The Hormuz threat is another opportunity to set boundaries on Iran's rogue behavior. Washington, along with London, Paris and Riyadh, should say plainly that any attempt to close or disrupt traffic through the strait would be considered an act of war that would be met with a military response. That response would be robust and immediate, and it would target Iran's military and nuclear assets, perhaps even its regime. Iran's mullahs need to understand that an act of aggression would jeopardize their own survival.
The Hormuz flap should also underscore the strategic damage that would result if Iran does get the bomb. Fortified by a nuclear threat, the mullahs would be more willing to blackmail their neighbors and press for regional dominance. Would the U.S. dare resist Iranian aggression if it meant putting American forces at risk of a nuclear reprisal? Better to act now to stop Iran before we have to answer that terrible question.
Review & Outlook: Iran's Hormuz Threat - WSJ.com
If they are stupid enough to try it we will send their tugboat navy to the bottom.
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