January 4, 2012 |
Iran's threat to close a vital international waterway if stricter sanctions are imposed on Iranian oil exports is more than just bellicose and provocative. It is also a test of U.S. will and commitment in the Persian Gulf at a time when our role in the region is changing. The world has grown used to chest-thumping by Tehran, and there was nothing particularly noteworthy about the exercises conducted by Iranian armed forces last week to demonstrate their ability to close the Strait of Hormuz.
January 7, 2012 |
A Navy destroyer rescued 13 Iranian fishermen held hostage by Somali pirates in the Arabian Sea only days after Tehran warned the United States to keep its ships out of the nearby Persian Gulf. Sailors from the guided-missile destroyer Kidd boarded the Iranian dhow Thursday and detained 15 Somalis after one of the fishermen was able to reveal in a radio communication that his vessel's crew was being held captive. Seeing a publicity windfall at a time of growing tension with Iran, Pentagon public affairs officers quickly swung into action, setting up a conference call for reporters with Navy commanders in the region.
May 30, 1987 |
Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher said Friday that Britain would consider any formal request from the United States to help protect merchant shipping in the Persian Gulf. Speaking at an election campaign news conference in London, Thatcher said Britain has two or three navy ships in the area but that their primary responsibility is to protect British shipping. "I am not aware of any formal request from the United States (for help in protecting ships), " she said.
August 10, 1987 |
An American-operated supertanker loaded with Iranian oil hit a mine today just outside the Persian Gulf, and three reflagged Kuwaiti ships were reported moving slowly toward home under U.S. Navy escort. Iran, which has said the gulf will be "full of mines" until the superpowers quit intervening in the region, declared today that it will turn the waterway into a "killing field for the aggressors."
October 29, 1987 |
Iraq said Wednesday that its warplanes raided three tankers off Iran in the Persian Gulf and industrial targets on the mainland. Iran threatened to answer any Western economic embargo by sealing off the Persian Gulf. Iran also said that three of its warplanes approached American warships south of the gulf in defiance of U.S. Navy warnings. Meantime, the 13th convoy of Navy vessels and reflagged tankers arrived safely in Kuwait, which has been hit by three Iranian missiles this month.
August 20, 1987 |
U.S. warships escorted another convoy of Kuwaiti tankers into the Persian Gulf on Wednesday, steaming past Iranian missile sites and patrol ships without incident as they moved through the Strait of Hormuz and headed up the gulf toward Kuwait.
July 23, 1987 |
A naval convoy of three U.S. warships and two "reflagged" Kuwaiti oil tankers steamed through the Strait of Hormuz on Wednesday and entered the war-plagued Persian Gulf without interference from Iran. As the convoy cleared its first hurdle, Iran stepped up its criticism of the U.N. Security Council for demanding a cease-fire in the almost seven-year-long war between Iran and Iraq. But the Tehran government gave no sign that it would be the first to violate the truce.
June 8, 1987 |
In its strongest warning yet that Iran could face a preemptive strike if it deploys Chinese-made Silkworm missiles, the Reagan Administration said Sunday that deployment would be considered a hostile act and would "run the risk of retaliation."
October 22, 1987 |
A convoy of reflagged Kuwaiti tankers and American warships steamed south Wednesday, past an Iranian oil platform destroyed Monday by U.S. Navy guns. The escorted convoy is expected to complete the 550-mile trip out of the gulf today. It is the 12th such operation in the three months since U.S. warships began escorting Kuwaiti-owned tankers, registered in the United States and flying American flags, to protect them from Iranian attack.
July 11, 2012 |
WASHINGTON - The Navy is rushing dozens of unmanned underwater craft to the Persian Gulf to help detect and destroy mines in a major military buildup aimed at preventing Iran from closing the strategic Strait of Hormuz in the event of a crisis, U.S. officials said. The tiny SeaFox submersibles each carry an underwater television camera, homing sonar and an explosive charge. The Navy bought them in May after an urgent request by Marine Gen. James Mattis, the top U.S. commander in the Middle East.