Can Iran Close the Straight of Hormuz?

Discussion in 'The Middle East & North Africa' started by Pathfinder, May 4, 2016.

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  1. Pathfinder

    Pathfinder Lieutenant Colonel

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    Iran warns it could close Strait of Hormuz to US

    IRGC-equips-vessels-with-anti-ship-missiles.jpg


    Iran will close the strategic Strait of Hormuz, a passageway through which a third of the world's oil is transported, unless the US and its allies stop "threatening" it, a senior Iranian military commander has said.

    "If the Americans and their regional allies want to pass through the Strait of Hormuz and threaten us, we will not allow any entry," state media quoted Brigadier General Hossein Salami, the deputy commander of the powerful Revolutionary Guard, as saying on Wednesday.

    Without elaborating on what he and other leaders would consider a threat, Salami said that "Americans should learn from recent historical truths", most likely referring to the January capture of 10 US sailors who entered Iranian waters.

    Rest is here:
    http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2016/05/iran-warns-close-strait-hormuz-160504090814909.html

    I think that they could temporarily close it but they would be blown away after doing so. I do believe however that we could lose a few ships in the Gulf because the Iranians have been developing good anti ship capabilities. I think it would be difficult to destroy all of their anti ship missiles before they can do damage because they have a big coastline on the Persian Gulf.
     
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  2. Technofox

    Technofox That Norwegian girl Staff Member Ret. Military Developer

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    Yes they can, but it would be forcibly reopened by the region, not just the US, if they did so. There's already a lot of bad blood in the Middle-East towards Iran, and I can't imagine Kuwait, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Oman or any other regional nation would be too happy about Iran disrupting commerce... though if Iran's doing this that means there's a war going on, so commerce is already askew.

    Iran has a number of options for closing the straight including mining, sabotage and the destruction of commercial and hostile vessels and they are well positioned to do this.

    Their small Fateh class submarine:
    [​IMG]

    Kajami class swimmer infiltration craft:
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    *Also used by North Korea

    A new unnamed class of SDV:
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    All provide Iran with a means of covertly attacking shipping in the Straight of Hormuz. From limpet mines delivered by swimmers, to naval mines and torpedoes from attack boats and small submarines, Iran has the means of closing the straight.

    One torpedoed ship in a critical juncture will cause damage to international commerce in the region. Hundreds of mines and irregular forces will be a headache for years.
     
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  3. Osmanovic

    Osmanovic 1st Lieutenant

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    The strait of hormuz is extremely narrow and relatively shallow making it very easy for Iran to block off. The Iranian side of the Persian gulf is also mountainous making it easier for them to hide anti ship missiles.

    image-298168-panoV9-iykg-298168.jpg

    Hezbollah militants used the below Kowsar missile against an Israeli ship (INS Hanit). The Israelis have superb intelligence and surveillance capabilities yet they got hit by one. The ship also had a Phalanx CIWS. The Range of this missile is only 20km though. They have other longer range systems like the Noor, Qadr, and Raad anti ship missiles. Our best chance against these is to try and have effective jammers on our ships or else we will run into some trouble.

    Kosar.jpg

    Mines:

    "But for any immediate threat, the Navy will have to rely on its existing technology to clear mines, and that's probably why it's hoping that politics—rather than technology—will ultimately stave off the mine threat. Truver says that Iran mining the Strait of Hormuz would be regarded as act of war and would likely cause immediate retaliation. "They would not put many weapons in the water," he says—maybe a handful before the United States and other countries would likely intervene."

    http://www.popularmechanics.com/mil...ans-naval-mines-the-ied-of-the-seas-13541405/
     
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  4. AMDR

    AMDR Captain Staff Member Administrator

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    I don't think that would be a very good idea. Seems like more posturing.

    If Iran wants to close out the strait to US vessels the US can close out access to their own ports. Iran isn't the only that can mine the strait.

    Paper by a USAF Colonel talking about the new air-launched Quickstrike-ER mine: http://www.au.af.mil/au/afri/aspj/digital/pdf/articles/2015-Mar-Apr/V-Pietrucha.pdf

    "Westward, the dual-use port at Bandar Abbas would be a prime candidate for mining. We have long-standing concerns about Iranian navy submarines—Russian-built Kilo-class diesel-electrics. Bandar Abbas hosts the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps navy as well, including minisubmarines and the ubiquitous small speedboats. The anchorage is 30–35 feet deep with an entrance only 800 feet wide fronted by a breakwater with a gap of 1,300 feet, making it an ideal candidate for closure."
     
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  5. Atilla

    Atilla Major

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    Thank you for saying this, I never hear anyone discuss it. America and everyone else who relies on the stability of those straits can block in Iran out too. This is not a one sided coin.

    Iran has the capability to block the straits the same way I have the capability to flood my whole apartment. Will I flood my apartment? No because all of my neighbors will be angry and I will be kicked out. If Iran does anything to block the straits war will breakout because the US, gulf states, and everyone else who relies on oil from that region for their economy will not allow the flow to stop. Every country will condemn Iran.
     
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