10 US Sailors 2 Boats Detained by Iran

Discussion in 'U.S. Strategic Affairs' started by Pathfinder, Jan 12, 2016.

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  1. Pathfinder

    Pathfinder Lieutenant Colonel

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    Pentagon: 2 Navy boats in Iranian custody; Iran assures crew will be returned promptly

    Riverine-Boat.jpg

    The crew of two small Navy craft are being held by Iran, but American officials have received assurances from Tehran that the crew and vessels will be returned safely and promptly.

    Pentagon spokesman Peter Cook told The Associated Press that the boats were moving between Kuwait and Bahrain when the U.S. lost contact with them.

    http://www.cnbc.com/2016/01/12/pent...n-assures-crew-will-be-returned-promptly.html
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 19, 2016
    Atilla, AMDR, Technofox and 1 other person like this.
  2. Falcon

    Falcon Lieutenant Colonel Staff Member Social Media Team

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    This is crazy!!! Completely unacceptable!!! What are our rules of engagement in that region? Obviously something is wrong if someone can just take over a couple of our boats. Why weren't we able to react? Were we not able to detect the Iranians? Lets see how this is brought up in the State of the Union Address.
     
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  3. Technofox

    Technofox That Norwegian girl Staff Member Ret. Military Developer

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    Something like this:

    In the Persian Gulf the US has Small Unit Riverine Craft:

    [​IMG]

    And Riverine Command Boats, also known as CB90.

    [​IMG]

    It definitely was something small. Not exactly a major coup for Iran, it wasn't a destroyer or cruiser, and if US ships where conducting innocent passage, and not something more nefarious, Iran may have violated International Laws.

    But the incident is expected to pass without concern or further issues:

    US officials say they have received assurances from Tehran that the crew of two small US navy ships – currently in Iranian custody – will soon be allowed to continue their journey.

    As reported by Iran held two US navy ships in Gulf | World news | The Guardian

    Well it depends on US actions. If the US was in Iranian territorial waters, but conducting innocent passage, then Iran broke International Maritime Laws and could be tried... if the US was a signatory to those laws anyway. The US and some Central Asian landlocked nations are non-parties to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, which governs activities like innocent passage.

    [​IMG]


    If the US actions where nefarious, such as intel gathering, Iran had a right to self-defense and a right to seize hostile boats, in accordance to a law the US doesn't follow of course. Iran signed, but didn't ratify the convention.

    Letting military and diplomatic officials work things out seems to be the best option, not only in this case, but to avoid future engagements. Opening fire to protect two boats and ten men is a major escalation that would have unknown repercussions.

    Both side's will state their case in their respective media, the crew and boat will be released, and the world will move on.

    ...

    It's being reported that the incident was caused by mechanical failure:

    From the article Iran detains 10 US sailors: what we know:

    US officials told the Associated Press that the ships experienced mechanical failures during their journey, which caused them to drift into Iranian territorial waters.

    According to official US statements and every independent media report, the sailors are not prisoners or hostages.

    Rather, the Iranians have detained them temporarily and are set to release them. The exact release date isn't clear yet; senior defense officials told the Daily Beast that the sailors will be held at least through Wednesday. Obama administration officials reportedly said Iran would not release the sailors immediately because it is currently the middle of the night in Iran and doing so would be "unsafe."


    Multiple statements from US officials to press say that the sailors' detention is only temporary. "We subsequently have been in communication with Iranian authorities, who have informed us of the safety and well-being of our personnel," a US official told CNN. "We have received assurances the sailors will promptly be allowed to continue their journey."

    Reportedly, this was secured (at least in part) by a top-level conversation between Secretary of State John Kerry and Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif. Kerry "personally engaged with Zarif on this issue to try to get to this outcome," a US official told the AP.

    Based on these quotes and other publicly available information, the narrative of events looks to be as follows: Two US boats on a training mission experienced a mechanical failure, which caused them to drift into Iranian territory. The surprised Iranians picked them up and detained the US sailors while they figured out what the Americans were doing there.
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2016
  4. T-123456

    T-123456 Captain Staff Member International Mod

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    Yeah right,''two boats with mechanical failure'',something fishy here.
     
  5. AMDR

    AMDR Captain Staff Member Administrator

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    I think they are trying to provoke a hostile response from us. We would have much to lose and Iran having everything to gain in that situation from a PR standpoint.

    Let Iran play their games. At the end of the day everybody knows who holds the real power in the Gulf when the shooting starts.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Praying_Mantis
     
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