Those old enough to remember the cowardly attack on the USS Cole in 2000 by members of al-Qaida while the destroyer was being refueled in Yemen – taking the lives of 17 of our U.S. Navy sailors – certainly recall how we were all filled with anger and rage against those who did this.
Being pre-9/11, this was something that just didn’t really happen to our military ships. As a nation, we were shocked and very angry that these terrorists were able to get this close to one of our vessels on a suicide mission to kill as many Americans as possible. We have since been living in a post-9/11 world in which we have beefed up security immensely at our airports, naval military installations and other strategic areas that terrorists would love to attack if possible.
We credit former Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama and current President Donald Trump for keeping this security beefed up to protect our citizens and letting our enemies know that if they harm our citizens, there will be repercussions.
Lately, there have been some threats in the Persian Gulf, where our Navy vessels are on patrol and are being harassed by boats from Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Navy. Some of the boats have gotten dangerously close to some of our vessels. Last week, 11 boats from their navy swarmed our vessels.
This harassment has gone on long enough and needs to be stopped. Videos show these ships getting so close to these vessels that they could potentially ram one of them while laden with explosives and kill and injure our service members.
This is something that we cannot afford to let happen. That is why we were glad to hear Trump give the order Wednesday for the Navy to shoot and destroy all Iranian gunboats if they harass our ships at sea.
Iran said it was conducting its own exercises and blamed “the unprofessional and provocative actions of the United States and their indifference to warnings” for the incident, but offered no evidence to support its claims.
We don’t trust one word coming out of Tehran, but we trust these videos that clearly show these terrorists’ boats are deliberately harassing our vessels at sea. Their country’s pattern of harassing our ships is well documented.
In December, a large group of IRGC boats sailed very close to the Nimitz class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln and other ships from her strike group as they passed through the highly strategic Strait of Hormuz.
This harassment shouldn’t be allowed to continue. Trump has put those who harass our vessels on notice that if they continue to do this they will be blown out of the water.
Trump isn’t a man who makes idle threats. He backs them up with action, so we believe Iran would be wise to tell its boats to cease this continued harassment. If they don’t, maybe they’ll think twice about future harassment when one or two of their boats and terrorist crews are blown out of the water.