Home / Be The Change / Antiwar / BREAKING: US Navy ‘Fires Warning Shots’ at Iranian Vessels in Strait of Hormuz

BREAKING: US Navy ‘Fires Warning Shots’ at Iranian Vessels in Strait of Hormuz

According to unnamed defense officials, a U.S. Navy ship fired warning shots at four Iranian Revolutionary Guard vessels in the Strait of Hormuz after the ships advanced to close to their American counterparts.

Reuters reports:

“The officials, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said the USS Mahan established radio communication with the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps boats but they did not respond to requests to slow down and continued asking the Mahan questions.

“The Navy destroyer fired warning flares and a U.S. Navy helicopter also dropped a smoke float before the warning shots were fired.”

Defense officials claim the Iranian ships came within 900 yards (2,700 feet) of the Mahan, which had been tasked with protecting other U.S. vessels in the area.

As the southern entry point to the Persian Gulf, the Strait of Hormuz — although technically the territorial waters of Oman — is considered international waters and thus traversable by any nation. However, Iran — positioned on the north of the strait — has repeatedly threatened during instances of geopolitical turmoil to refuse entry to the United States and other nations.

With the situation in the Middle East — particularly regarding Syria and Yemen — still fueling tension between the West and a growing bloc of nations allied with Russia, there have been hints Tehran could follow through on its threat to close the maritime ‘choke point.’

In January 2016, ten U.S. Navy members were briefly captured and detained by Iran after their ship putatively experienced a malfunction of navigational systems and strayed into Iranian waters. That incident came under intense scrutiny, and an internal probe found both Iran and U.S. crew members at fault. According to Admiral John Richardson, in part,

“The investigation concluded that Iran violated international law by impeding the boats’ innocent passage transit, and they violated sovereign immunity by boarding, searching and seizing the boats and by photographing and videotaping the crew.”

Pictures and video of the Navy crew being detained sparked international controversy and heightened tensions between the two countries as Iran rightly called out the U.S. for breaching its territory and the U.S. admonished Tehran for the way it handled the incident.

In October, the U.S. reported missiles launched from Houthi rebel territory in Yemen led the military to fire back, knocking out strategic radar sites and other important targets in the area. As The Free Thought Project explained at the time,

“Yemen’s Shi’a Houthis — who captured capital city, Sana’a, last year — have long been suspected by Washington to be receiving direct but surreptitious support from the Iranian government, which flatly denies the allegation.”

Because the Houthis denied having fired upon any U.S. ships — and the situation seemed murky and inexplicable — retaliation drew the ire of Yemeni government-allied Iran, which deployed a fleet to the area.

That incident is believed to be the official U.S. entry into the war in Yemen, although the situation didn’t escalate further with Tehran.

Years of hostilities between the United States and Iran cooled somewhat over a deal to curb Tehran’s nuclear weapons ambitions; however, Reuters notes, “serious differences still remain over Iran’s ballistic missile program as well as conflicts in Syria and Iraq.”

According to one unnamed official whom Reuters paraphrased, “the warning shots fired on Sunday were just one of seven interactions the Mahan had with Iranian vessels over the weekend, but the others were judged to be safe.”

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Should Iranian vessels harass any U.S. Navy ships, President-elect Donald Trump warned in September, they would be “shot out of the water.”

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Reuters was unable to reach the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps or Trump’s transition team for comment on the weekend’s events.

  • Phil Freeman

    US hegemony.

    • Nexusfast123

      US stupidity more like. Maybe nukes have been uninvented or don’t work.

  • Peggy Gordon

    Ohh the USA (the shadow government) is mad for war their puppets are finding fault with Russia big time ,now it is allies of Russia,where next??? seems to be since Russia showed them up in Syria,they wanted Syria soo bad to completely destabilise the middle east and cull as many people as possible for their NWO. but people are copping on to their hidden agenda fast,

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  • doucyet

    Obama has 10 days left to carry out his mission to get a war started and eliminate Assad. After which, we’ll have to see if they have “convinced” Trump to follow the same orders.

  • NDMA
  • junktex

    Whatare our warships doing off the coast of Iran?

    • Steve Rusk

      Well we’re in their back yard taking pot shots at them.

      • MarkPitrone

        Obviously didn’t read the article.

        • Steve Rusk

          The US has been challenging the Chinese in their territorial waters for over a year now. We’re taking pot shots at Iranian ships in their back yard, while simultaneously conducting tank maneuvers in NATO countries along Russia’s Eastern border. Where do you think we will be successful in igniting a war?

          • MarkPitrone

            You still haven’t read the article. China and Russia have nothing to do with this story.

            That you are correct that Obummer is trying to set up Trump with a brand new war has nothing to do with the destroyer firing ‘warning flares’ – NOT live rounds – across the bow of Iranian ships. The Iranian boats were acting in an aggressive fashion toward American warships escorting merchant ships in international waters. The Navy ships used a measured response to adversarial combatants. The destroyer’s commander acted reasonably to deter Iranian aggression and I think it was successful.

            Now, if you want to discuss Obummer’s adversarial stance against Russia or the ‘freedom of the seas’ exercise in international waters of the South China sea, lets do that in the comments section of article that have to do with those issues.

            AT1 USNR-R [ret]

          • Steve Rusk

            I read the article, similar incidents of potential conflict are a related subject particularly when the same hand is fanning all the flames. I could have also mentioned Syria.

            Apparently you don’t understand the nature of “pot shots”, they are more or less random gunfire intended to annoy, antagonize, intimidate or provoke, it can be live ammo, rock salt or even blanks. When something is being fired in your direction it’s moving fast and you can’t be sure just what the hell it is. The world knows that we have very sneaky ways to kill people and that we’re not afraid to use them. I’m sure the people on the Iranian ships were extremely stressed, however they kept their cool anyway. In my opinion these pot shots were intended to provoke.

            I’m talking about obama’s adversarial stance against everybody. “Freedom of the seas exercise”, just more propaganda. The road to war is paved with lies and deception, you’re not going to get any truth while we’re trying to start something. Is there some reason why you want to limit the discussion?

          • MarkPitrone

            Just to keep the thread on topic.

            Have you ever been on a combatant ship at sea that’s been threatened, provoked or fired at by another naval vessel? It isn’t a very nice feeling, I can tell you from experience. You put your guard up and you try to persuade the offender to back off, especially if you are seen as the bully on the block. And if they don’t back off, you have 2 choices; kill the aggressor or be his bitch.

            Fortunately, the aggressor always backed down when I was on board. Steaming unmolested in international waters is the right of every ship at sea. But some people or nations feel like they have to test the other guy’s willingness to protect his rights.

            THAT is what Iran did to the American destroyer, tested the skipper’s willingness to engage in a battle. The skipper used a measured response, rather than blowing the little bastards out of the water.

            Don’t judge another man’s actions until you’ve walked a few miles in his shoes.

            AT1, USNR-R [ret].

          • Steve Rusk

            So we’re not the aggressor when we go into the other guys backyard, crowd his space and take pot shots at him?

          • MarkPitrone

            If we were in the other guys back yard, we would be trespassing. But we are navigating international waters in the Straits of Hormuz, not in Iran’s national waters. Same with the international waters in the South China sea, not in China’s national waters. It would be the same if their navies were in international waters near our national waters. If we approached them in a threatening fashion in international waters, they would have every right to warn us off.

            I don’t understand why you are so worked up about our navy escorting merchies in international waters, in which EVERYONE has the right to navigate their ships. Nor do I understand why you are so worked up about our navy warning others off, first by radio and then, when the other continues in an aggressive fashion, we fire warning flares [NOT destructive rounds] to make the point more … ‘pointedly’.

            AT1, USNR-R [ret]

          • Steve Rusk

            In the usual tit for tat China is considering putting a carrier group in international waters off of the West Coast of the US, I guess we’re going to see what our government thinks about these kinds of intrusions in our backyard.

            When the biggest bully on the planet swaggers around the world fully armed with a chip on it’s shoulder, that’s what is known as “Projection of power”, it has little to do with what we say is going on.

            Pot shots, when the muzzles flare in your direction, can you really be sure just what is coming your way? This was intended to unnerve an adversary and evoke a hasty, poorly reasoned response. The Iranians kept their cool despite our provocations.

          • MarkPitrone

            Bring ’em on! There is no threat to our sovereignty by other nations navies navigating the international waters, no matter HOW close they come to our territorial waters. Could not care less if they do it. Of course, I have my defenses ready to meet any aggression, but I will not send any ships toward them with anything like a hostile appearance. THERE is where Iran was in the wrong – showing an aggressive attitude in its ships approach. Did they attempt to ask the navy ship’s captain what his intentions were? I’m sure they have radios in Iran.

          • Steve Rusk

            The problem is your opinion won’t matter, nor will those of the men on the ships that will stalk the Chinese craft should they be placed over here, they will be following orders.

            Our ships are over there specifically because they are not welcome and we know it. Those in the adversarial ships are following orders as well, they also understand the nature of the game is intimidation and provocation. This is a game played from afar with ships and men as chess pieces and instigated by the US in this case.

            Should the Chinese place their fleet in waters off of our coast we will continue to play the same games with them. This is how the American Empire imposes its will upon the world.

    • MarkPitrone

      Escorting merchant ships through the straits, which are international waters. The Navy stays as close to the center of the channel as it can.

      AT1 USNR-R [ret].

      • Nexusfast123

        No one is challenging free passage. Same as in the South China Sea where China is not preventing free passage.

      • junktex

        LMAO.Doin’ good aint got no end.

  • madrino

    The ZWO wants to wipe out traces of their history, America has rarely been at peace, but extremely aggressive in asset stripping, land grabbing and “opening” up nations for theft for it’s owners, those who one the manufacture of money and credit. The US, like much of the “new” world, has always been nothing more than a colony. Entrenched in the UK, France, Netherlands, later Germany and owners of “Israel” the ZWO own and run Maroretic/Kabbalist US and Chekist Russia. These are the lowest denominator of man, yet we worship them and their wealth and power.

  • Steve Rusk

    America, the warfare state, looks like these idiots want to take on everybody.

  • Bill Manus

    Yup.
    It sure looks like Obama wants to leave the WH in a state of war with Russia.

  • MarkPitrone

    The picture is a bit deceptive. It shows an Iowa Class Battleship firing a 9 shot broadside of 16″ rounds. A destroyer MIGHT have two 5″ guns. However, the article says the destroyer fired warning flares, not explosive rounds.

    AT1 USNR-R [ret]