Iran's Armada of Two Sails Into U.S. Territorial Water
The Iranian government likes to make idle threats especially against anyone outside of its sphere of influence. They seem to relish the thought of a "David vs. Goliath" confrontation and always displays its prowess with new military hardware that seldom seems to be really real.
Before and during the current nuclear talks with Iran, many hardliners are not happy with some of the negotiating terms given to the West. Iran always uses its last stop during discussions, that is, we can retaliate, we have the military hardware to cause harm, we have equal capabilities like electronic warfare, armed drones, new stealth jet aircraft and maybe a nuclear bomb or two. Well, in the area of the Persian Gulf, this is absolutely true. Their missiles, their anti-ship missiles, their thousands of mines could create absolute havoc to Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman and the shipping lanes that carries much of the world's oil to Europe. It would only take a few hijacked or sunk oil tankers to force the oil cost to jump to $120 a barrel or more and to put the world on edge. Iran's anti-ship missiles of Russian and Chinese origin are sophisticated and many warships and oil tankers are easy prey.
However,the recent deployment of two Iranian warships, a frigate and support ship, to sail and enter U.S. waters off the east coast really is a public relations stunt to appease the audience at home. The Iranian decision to deploy naval vessels to the North Atlantic is largely symbolic. These ships pose no threat, of course, but it is a political statement. Iran only has four warships that can make long range ocean deployments. Most of their other naval vessels can only be used in local waters. While Iran’s objection to the U.S. naval presence in the Persian Gulf may have prompted its decision to send naval ships off the U.S. coast, the operation has more diplomatic than military significance. Though generally described as a “fleet” in media headlines, reports from the Iranian media indicate that the nation is sending only two ships — a destroyer and a helicopter transport vessel — on the voyage.
Iran is simply showing their population that they can deploy in other parts of the world to instill in national pride and to give America a taste of its own medicine with Iranian ships perched off the east coast. To most Americans, this is quite laughable. BTW, the U.S. Fifth Fleet that operates in the Persian Gulf and surrounding areas usually has a force of 20 or more ships, including a Carrier Battle Group, an Amphibious Ready Group, combat aircraft, and other support units and ships. So, that is another reason why Iran is projecting its miniscule naval power.
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