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Old 01-19-2016, 08:25 AM   #1
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Don't Give UP The Ship

This is something that I haven't been able to understand, this email I received seems to ask all the questions and express the doubts I have.
DON'T GIVE UP THE SHIP
The account of two U. S. Navy vessels being seized by the Iranian navy earlier this week seems completely implausible.
No part of it makes any sense.
The story is that two river patrol boats – bristling modern-day incarnations of the Vietnam swift boats – were navigating south from Kuwait to Bahrain. At some point, via some means, the two boats, with their contingent of five sailors each, surrendered to the Iranians.
Two accounts have been offered as to how that happened. The first was that one of the vessels lost its engine and that they both then drifted into Iranian waters. The other was that the two boats had been operating fine, but inadvertently navigated into Iranian territory.
Simply put, they got lost.
Neither account seems possible.
First off, if one of the boats broke down, and the sailor aboard trained to tend the engine couldn't fix it, the other boat would merely take it in tow and they would proceed on their way. That is not a novel maritime undertaking.
The second scenario – oops, we got lost – is even less likely. It turns out that navigation and navigation equipment are kind of a high priority for the Navy. Boats don’t get lost. Highly technical navigation equipment on both boats would have told crew members exactly where they were.
And in the unlikely event that both boats lost all electronic navigational equipment, and the compasses lost track of magnetic north, there is the simple fact that sailing from Kuwait to Bahrain pretty much involves nothing more complex than keeping the shore on your starboard side. And should you lose sight of shore, and can remember that the map has safety to the west and danger to the east, you’d think that the position of the sun in the sky or the fact that prevailing winds in the Persian Gulf in the winter are northwesterly, would somehow have allowed our sailors to find the Saudi shoreline instead of Iranian waters.
And all of that presumes that these two boats were operating alone in the open seas, which they presumably were not. There is, in fact, a U.S. Navy aircraft carrier battle group operating in the Persian Gulf.
The USS Harry S Truman owns the Persian Gulf these days, and the significant American military presence in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait – lands immediately proximate to the waters where our sailors were operating – makes us the biggest dog on the block.
And we’ve got radar and helicopters and airplanes and stuff like that.
And if an American vessel breaks down at sea, or strays from course, under those operational conditions, there are a lot of American assets that would both notice the problem and be able to offer relief.
Yet no one did.
We’re supposed to believe nobody radioed a couple of inexplicably lost boats to ask where they were going? When one of them supposedly broke down, a carrier battle group had no means to come to their assistance?
That makes no sense.
It’s completely unbelievable.
So is the apparent conduct of the sailors in the face of a supposed challenge by the Iranian military.
If one of the vessels was disabled, as is claimed, and hostile craft are approaching, bringing with them the prospect of capture and captivity, don’t you put all 10 sailors on the able boat, sink the disabled boat, and race the bad guys back to international waters?
From the Iranian video, it looks like two or three bass boats and four guys in mismatched uniforms, with a couple of AK's, captured two far-larger and better-armed American boats, both of which were bristling with mounted machine guns.
Here’s a fact: When you're kneeling on the deck of your own boat, with your hands clasped behind your head, and some guy’s shouting at you in terrorist language, things didn't go right.
And yet, that’s exactly what supposedly happened here. Ten American sailors, successors to Captain James Lawrence, are on their knees next to their unfired guns, in the face of a smaller and less well-armed opponent – with little American flags snapping in the breeze.
This is not the stuff of Commodore Perry and Admiral Farragut.
And you wonder whose call it was.
How far up the chain of command did they have to go to find the cowardly lion who ordered this genuflection before a bunch of savages? Did this get bounced all the way to the Pentagon, or the Situation Room? Which secretary of what made the decision not to put a squadron of naval aviators above those two boats to keep the camel jockeys at bay?
It is shameful, a worldwide embarrassment for the nation and the Navy.
And it is topped off by an obsequious videotaped apology, and pictures of our sailors, captive in hostile hands, the female with a towel over her head.
The President can ignore this.
But we can’t.
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Old 01-19-2016, 08:43 AM   #2
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I agree. Nothing about this makes any sense other than gross incompetence by someone in the chain.
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Old 01-19-2016, 08:52 AM   #3
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I want to believe if we had a different commander and chief (I hate to even use that term in connection with this piece of crap we have in office) It would have been handled a lot different. Unless of course Hilarious gets elected. She would probably say it does not matter that happened yesterday!
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Old 01-19-2016, 09:06 AM   #4
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Why is this such a mystery. Just ask the sailors what happened. That article treats this like some secret encrypted hieroglyphics. Just ask, duh....
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Old 01-19-2016, 10:58 AM   #5
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It will be long time, if ever, before any of those 10 sailors will be allowed to speak publicly, with their own thoughts.
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Old 01-19-2016, 11:06 AM   #6
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That entire e-mail message contains a lot of misinformation and half-truth, Chuck. The Navy has told us what really happened.

The two boats were traveling as planned when the engine on one of the boats began to run rough and lose power. They were forced to reduce speed to remain together. It wasn't a sufficient emergency that the sailors needed to call for help, but it slowed the boats down enough that they were going to be late arriving at their destination. To compensate, they decided to shorten the distance by taking a shortcut, and they left their planned route to head straight to Bahrain.

The problem is that there is an island in the middle of the Persian Gulf called Farsi Island. It is a part of Iran, and Iranian military is posted there. Farsi Island has the same three-mile territorial waters limit as the Hawaiian Islands and the Florida Keys. In taking the shortcut, the boats passed within less than three miles of Farsi Island and were taken into custody by the Iranian military. Any country, including the United States, would do the same thing if its territorial waters were breached.

This was a screw-up that will end the careers of a couple of US Navy officers, and deservedly so. They exercised bad judgement. They knew where they were, but chose to be there despite the fact that they shouldn't have been. When mission controllers planned the route, they knew what they were doing. When officers aboard the boats chose to change that route, they didn't. The enlisted men did nothing wrong, and will probably not be punished. The officers involved, however, will never again be trusted with US Navy assets, IMO.



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Old 01-19-2016, 11:15 AM   #7
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Very well put Chuck.I agree there is no plausible explanation. I doubt it will take long before one of the sailor speaks up.
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Old 01-19-2016, 11:21 AM   #8
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The truth does not necessarily match with tin foil hat dogma.
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Old 01-19-2016, 01:18 PM   #9
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I've never been a soldier, but I know about "rules of engagement."

To that, let's suppose they got lost. Let's further suppose that the Iranians came after them flying an Iranian flag. Considering the beheadings and distrust, why didn't our soldiers open fire?

I cannot believe that a current 'rule of engagement' states that "when you get lost, willfully hand over your life to executed by our worst enemies."

The idea of "fear" runs strong in my family--you should see my midi-chlorian count, it's virtually nonexistent.

I'd have fired every gun on the boat until the barrels melted down. I'd rather be tried in an American court martial than beheaded by a raghead.
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Old 01-19-2016, 10:29 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by The Tourist View Post
I've never been a soldier, but I know about "rules of engagement."

To that, let's suppose they got lost. Let's further suppose that the Iranians came after them flying an Iranian flag. Considering the beheadings and distrust, why didn't our soldiers open fire?

I cannot believe that a current 'rule of engagement' states that "when you get lost, willfully hand over your life to executed by our worst enemies."

The idea of "fear" runs strong in my family--you should see my midi-chlorian count, it's virtually nonexistent.

I'd have fired every gun on the boat until the barrels melted down. I'd rather be tried in an American court martial than beheaded by a raghead.

They screwed up and they knew it. They were in a place they were not supposed to be, and their superiors did not know it at the time.

There wasn't a rule of engagement because we are technically not at war with Iran. They were not on a combat mission. Why should they have engaged?

Do you really believe it would have been better to have started a war with Iran over the foolish mistakes of a couple of men who exercised poor judgment?

Thank God cooler heads prevailed. We don't need another war in the Middle East.



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