Twice this week, the Arleigh Burke-class US Navy destroyer, USS Mason, came under missile attacks from Iranian funded and guided rebels in Yemen. The first attack was fairly simple. A land based anti-ship missile was fired using optical sites. It did no damage. The second attack involved the USS Mason being painted by fire control radar. The Mason used defensive missiles to knock down the threat.
The U.S. military launched cruise missile strikes on Thursday to knock out three coastal radar sites in areas of Yemen controlled by Iran-aligned Houthi forces, retaliating after failed missile attacks this week on a U.S. Navy destroyer, U.S. officials said.
The strikes, authorized by President Barack Obama, represent Washington’s first direct military action against suspected Houthi-controlled targets in Yemen’s conflict.
Still, the Pentagon appeared to stress the limited nature of the strikes, aimed at radar that enabled the launch of at least three missiles against the U.S. Navy ship USS Mason on Sunday and Wednesday.
“These limited self-defense strikes were conducted to protect our personnel, our ships and our freedom of navigation,” Pentagon spokesman Peter Cook said.
U.S. officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, said U.S. Navy destroyer USS Nitze launched the Tomahawk cruise missiles around 4 a.m. (0100 GMT).
There are several moving parts to this. The rebels are being backed by the Iranians because an Iranian client state in Yemen will serve to undermine all the existing regimes on the Arabian peninsula. Saudi Arabia and Bahrain have large Shia populations and a secure foothold in Yemen would give the Iranians a sanctuary for training terrorists as well as for conducting intelligence activities. The bonus would be that Iran would control both sides of the Straits of Hormuz and, potentially, access to the Persian Gulf itself.
The Saudis are embroiled in a war with the rebels because they realize what the stakes are. The US, rather than assisting the Saudis in crushing this Iranian provocation has devoted its energies to condemning Saudi forces for “human rights” abuses. Obama, for reason known only to his psychiatrist, has a man crush on various Iranian leaders. Some he seem to revere as father figures. Because of this he has basically let the Iranians take control of the shipping lanes in the Persian Gulf and screw with the US Navy whenever the mood strikes them.
This missile attack is a bullsh** response and the Iranians know it. For it to be effective, the USS Mason should have targeted everything involved in yesterday’s missile attack as the attack was underway and destroyed it. It didn’t, Instead we launched a late night attack on a radar site that more likely than no was not even manned when it was hit.
Sad. Pathetic. Quintessentially Obama-esque.