Iran seizes 15 British sailors in Iraqi waters; Update: Ahmadinejad will not address UNSC?

posted at 9:36 am on March 23, 2007 by Allahpundit

Doin’ what Iran does best: taking hostages. The media I’ve looked at all have the same details thus far: 15 sailors in two inflatable boats from the HMS Cornwall were inspecting merchant ships when they were surrounded by Iranian ships and detained — at gunpoint. An Iraqi fisherman says he saw it all go down. The Royal Navy insists the craft were in Iraqi waters at the time. Britain’s FM has summoned the Iranian ambassador; the sailors are believed to be at an Iranian navy base.

I love this from the Beeb article. They can’t kidnap our sailors — we have a resolution from the UN!

In a statement, leader of the Liberal Democrats, Sir Menzies Campbell, also called for their immediate release.

“Whatever the rights and wrongs of military action, British forces in Iraq are now there with the authority of a UN security council resolution… and the Iranian government should be left in no doubt of the serious implications of their action,” he said.

I figure they’ll be released soon and the incident will be dismissed as a misunderstanding. Iran can’t have meant to do this, not with Ahmadinejad set to address the Security Council tomorrow about the nuclear program and not to the British, who’ve been adamant in opposing any military action on Iran.

I’ll keep an eye on it. In the meantime, have a look at what happened to the last British sailors who were captured by Iran, in 2004. Click the image to watch.

sailors.jpg

Update: CNN nabbed an interview with the Cornwall’s commander:

Nick Lambert, commander of the HMS Cornwall — the frigate from which the British patrol had been deployed — said a Royal Navy backup helicopter witnessed the incident…

He said the captain of the merchant vessel had been cleared to proceed and the two British inflatable patrol boats were readying for departure when they were surrounded by the Iranian navy and taken into Iranian waters.

A U.S. military official who monitors the region told CNN that the seizure was made after a dispute over whether the British patrol was in Iraqi, international, or Iranian territorial waters.

Update: More fingerpointing: Iran says the U.S. hasn’t issued Ahmadinejad a visa, the U.S. says it has.

Update: A reporter for an Iranian state-run newspaper confirms that the sailors were captured but claims they were in Iranian waters. Iran TV isn’t reporting it yet, though.

Update: The Iranian navy started wargames in the Gulf yesterday. Maybe someone got their signals crossed?

Update: The visa must have arrived because Drudge says Ahmadinejad’s made his flight plans.

Update: U.S. officials are telling Fox News Ahmadinejad will not attend the Security Council meeting tomorrow because — so he says — he never got his visa. As of a few hours ago, the passport was in transit. I can’t believe a bureaucratic snafu could actually have happened here; either he’s looking to back out, probably because of the hostage situation, or both sides have agreed that it’s better he not attend and this is the cover story. Standby for more.


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authority of a UN security council resolution

Boy, I bet that’ll make shake in their boots.

Alden Pyle on March 23, 2007 at 9:44 AM

I didn’t expect this again, but figured some scuffle or incident would occur with all those ships near Iran. They will most likely be released very soon, but until then…

Pull the visa.

sunny on March 23, 2007 at 9:53 AM

Iran can’t have meant to do this

Just the kind of two-bit strategy a two-bit Capo would use as he struts like a peacock and demands protection money from you.

We should now deny entry for Dinnerjacket.

Limerick on March 23, 2007 at 9:56 AM

One Iranian City should be Destroyed every hour until they are released. When will we get serious about warfare.

There is only one type of war, Total war.

JayHaw Phrenzie on March 23, 2007 at 9:57 AM

And BTW, A Hostile Foriegn power kidnaps soldiers from America’s ally and you think it’s serious enough to pull Ahmadinajackasses Visa? Maybe you should get together with Jimmy Carter and boycott the olympics next.

Comprende Vous, Act of war?

JayHaw Phrenzie on March 23, 2007 at 9:59 AM

Iran can’t have meant to do this, not with Ahmadinejad set to address the Security Council tomorrow about the nuclear program and not to the British, who’ve been adamant in opposing any military action on Iran.

Yes, they meant to do that, and meant to do that against the Brits. Ahmadhimmijob is a puppet that has just about outlived its usefulness to the Mad Mullahs that actually run Iran.

If Britain (and the US) does nothing, and Ahmadhimmijob gets to harangue us at the UN again, it’s one hellova PR victory.

If Britain moves off its anti-invasion stance, it won’t matter because the Mad Mullahs still have Russia and Red China (and their vetoes) in their back pocket.

If Britain (or more likely, the US) actually does something, we’re the bad guys, and if that something is to splash one Ahmadhimmijob, the Mad Mullahs will simply continue on their way without a person who causes as much turmoil internally as he does externally.

That having been said, I’m hoping for a 500-mph water landing for Ahmadhimmijob’s aircraft.

steveegg on March 23, 2007 at 10:06 AM

“…I see you stand like greyhounds in the slips,
Straining upon the start. The game’s afoot!
Follow your spirit; and upon this charge
Cry ‘God for Harry! England and Saint George!…”

wccawa on March 23, 2007 at 10:06 AM

Does anyone else see the beginnings of simularities between Irans current strategy and that of Hizbullah’s trial run, what, just last Fall?

P. James Moriarty on March 23, 2007 at 10:09 AM

If this is the line in the sand, alright. But if we didn’t bomb them for killing our US soldiers we are not going to bomb them for this kidnapping. Sorry for not calling for the immediate release of Nukes Jay, I guess I’m soft like that.

sunny on March 23, 2007 at 10:13 AM

I didn’t say “Nuke”. Please make your argument without distorting mine. We desatroyed hundreds of cities in WW2, only 2 required nukes.

JayHaw Phrenzie on March 23, 2007 at 10:14 AM

Does anyone else see the beginnings of simularities between Irans current strategy and that of Hizbullah’s trial run, what, just last Fall?

P. James Moriarty on March 23, 2007 at 10:09 AM

Could be, just to test the reaction of the Brits, US.

sunny on March 23, 2007 at 10:16 AM

I think that their making this move now may indicate that they think they’re ready to withstand whatever the Brits, with or without help, can throw at them. Now that the Russians are balking at helping them accelerate their Nuke program, Amadida-what’s-his-name is likely under internal political pressure and this may be a move on his part to distract from his other issues, both Jihadi and national domestic issues.

(See…..sound kind of stupid when you hear it applied to someone other than a right-winger doesn’t it?)

P. James Moriarty on March 23, 2007 at 10:18 AM

I didn’t say “Nuke”. Please make your argument without distorting mine. We desatroyed hundreds of cities in WW2, only 2 required nukes.

JayHaw Phrenzie on March 23, 2007 at 10:14 AM

Just as a reminder, one of the firebombings of Tokyo killed more Japanese than either of the nukes (and I want to say both combined).

steveegg on March 23, 2007 at 10:19 AM

Your right Jay, the destruction of a city every hour not Nukes. I think when you told me to get together with Jimmy, I exagerated.

I don’t mind a firm stand, a military response, it just won’t happen.

sunny on March 23, 2007 at 10:21 AM

I’m not surprised by this. Ahmawildncrazyguy was one on the hostage takers back in 1979. This isn’t a new tactic for him.

Vic on March 23, 2007 at 10:24 AM

Seems I recall Ahmadinejad promised something would happen about now.

Connie on March 23, 2007 at 10:25 AM

Two points…

One. The Iranians claim the entire Gulf. They do not recognize that its international water like the other Gulf States and UN do… therefore their arguement will be that the Brits had no jurisdiction to be in those waters. This is a calculated tactic to try to muddy the waters, and make themselves look like victims…

Two… and more importantly… where in the HELL was the Frigate they deployed from? And WHERE was the rest of the task group who sits at the mouth of the Gulf searching ships? Why did they LET this happen? These are very constrained waters, I know them well as I used to do this exact mission. That Iranian boats would be allowed to take these guys is amazing.

Romeo13 on March 23, 2007 at 10:25 AM

The important thing to remember is that this is just sabre rattling. And the Quds forces and EFPs? Also sabre rattling. The nuclear program is for sure sabre rattling.

These soldiers will be released in a few weeks after some diplomatic feathers have flown. Oh, but if they are tortured and executed? Sabre rattling.

And don’t even get me started on the nuking of Tel Aviv. That there is sabre rattling writ large.

a4g on March 23, 2007 at 10:27 AM

Say for the sake of augument that iran gets what it seems to want, a Hizbullah/Israel-styled confrontation with Britan individually or the west collectively. What does Iran think it has in it’s pocket against it’s potential opponent(s)? Current buzz is that they are moving toward, but don’t yet have enough bomb grade Uranium-238 to make a fission weapon. Are they really that confident that an “attack” on them by the west would galvanize the Umah to their cause, forming the new and (assuming they’re planning on winning) caliphate? Do they have assets in place in Britan there for just such an occasion as this?

I question the timing.

P. James Moriarty on March 23, 2007 at 10:36 AM

Why would one Islamic nation abuse soldiers from an up and coming Islamic nation?

Blame Bush, blame Bush.

Hening on March 23, 2007 at 10:36 AM

I didn’t say “Nuke”. Please make your argument without distorting mine.
JayHaw Phrenzie on March 23, 2007 at 10:14 AM

Deal. Jay, nothing would make me feel better about it then to be able to roller skate across Iran. This morning, immediately after the seizure of the marines/sailors, I offered up an answer. That doesn’t work, I have no problem what-so-ever of greasing the tracks of Abrams tanks with the guts of Iranian puppies.

Iran screwed this up, big time. Argentina didn’t think the Brits would get that peed off.

Limerick on March 23, 2007 at 10:49 AM

This entire incident is serving the propaganda requirements of Iran and the coalition.

Iran will parade their British “prisoners” blindfolded on Iranian TV saying they were spies who were caught in Iranian waters. Although AhmadWhatsHisName is increasingly unpopular among Iranians, so to is the presence of foreign forces in neighboring Iraq. This staged incident may cause ordinary Iranians to forget their economic troubles and support their leadership against the occupiers.

Meanwhile, the coalition will say this was an unprovoked abduction in violation of international law. It’s one more nail in the coffin that justifies ever-more aggressive measures against Iran by the international community.

Pawns in this game? The Brit Royal Navy sailors.

CliffHanger on March 23, 2007 at 10:52 AM

Tit for tat. Maybe someone ought to grab the hairy munchkin when and if he shows up at the UN.

JammieWearingFool on March 23, 2007 at 10:53 AM

I say send them UN Rations and Cupcakes.

Fight stupid tactics with stupid tactics.

Ringmaster on March 23, 2007 at 10:55 AM

Oh… and once this game is played out for all it’s worth, the Brit sailors will be released and we’ll all be back to square-one.

CliffHanger on March 23, 2007 at 10:55 AM

We can expect more of the same, constant provocation, when Iran has nuclear weapons.

omegaram on March 23, 2007 at 11:03 AM

I expect the Brits to do nothing. The last Brit with a pair of balls was a woman.

Warner Todd Huston on March 23, 2007 at 11:08 AM

At the very least we can take comfort in the fact that these were British soldiers – the French would have surrendered by now.

Chad on March 23, 2007 at 11:12 AM

Provocation to test for reaction. So far the reaction has been….nothing. Next step: further escalation.

JustTruth101 on March 23, 2007 at 11:20 AM

Ahajamadingdong in coming here.

By AIR!

Where’s the U.S.S. Vincenz when we need her???

Tony737 on March 23, 2007 at 11:22 AM

This pales in comparison to what these lunatics will do once they have a nuke in their back pocket.

If the world community and the Brits cower now, and only protest the incident, what will be our recourse when they are fully armed with nukes? Pay them off and bow to Mecca?

When a bothersome litte pest lands on your nose, you flick it off. That’s all Iran is, for now.

fogw on March 23, 2007 at 11:27 AM

Don’t you know – Bush got the Brits to violate Iranian waters so they would be captured and Bush could use it as a pretext to start the war to steal Iranian oil. That’s what they were saying would happen last weekend in Washington! It’s so obvious !

eeyore on March 23, 2007 at 11:28 AM

Watch the KosKids starts wailing about how they went into Iranian waters on purpose to bait poor Ahmaadimwitnutjob, to justify taking action against Iran.

Seriously, though, how could they be left so exposed, two inflatable boats without firepower nearby?

RW Wacko on March 23, 2007 at 11:28 AM

and the Iranian government should be left in no doubt of the serious implications of their action,” he said.

Serious implications! Look out or we will pass resolutions against you! And we won’t even apologize very quickly if it offends you. Don’t smirk…we’re not kidding!

Coyote D. on March 23, 2007 at 11:36 AM

Iran can’t have meant to do this, not with Ahmadinejad set to address the Security Council tomorrow about the nuclear program and not to the British, who’ve been adamant in opposing any military action on Iran.

I disagree. You said the same thing when Assad was suspected of having Gemayel killed and you were probably wrong then. The thing is these men seem to be incapable of subtlety. To my mind it sends exactly the sort of blatant message, like one of Ahmaddinejad’s letters, that Iran is a kind of global gang leader that can have its way with the West.

aengus on March 23, 2007 at 11:37 AM

Iran can’t have meant to do this, not with Ahmadinejad set to address the Security Council tomorrow about the nuclear program and not to the British, who’ve been adamant in opposing any military action on Iran.

Sure they did.

The history of problems in the Gulf and specifically with Iran didn’t start in 1979. GB has had many “adventures” with Iran dating back before WWI and often, interestingly enough, including Russia. America got involved post WWII but the Brits have been long time allies/enemies of Iran. Americans tend to have a limited view of history and grievances. Older cultures take a more long term view.

Remember when the Shah was kicked out in ’79? Who do you think put the Shah(s) back in power? Why do you think they targeted the US Embasy? If you don’t know about Operation Ajax, Anglo Iranian Oil Company (aka BP), Churchill, Eisenhower, etc, its hard to understand the roots of this conflict.

If the Brits have already said they now oppose action against Iran, why wouldn’t Iran take a shot at someone they consider a historical enemy when they can be pretty assured they won’t pay a significant price?

JackStraw on March 23, 2007 at 11:38 AM

C’mon. Does anybody expect this to end any other way then the US and England, doesn’t feel right calling them Great Britain although United Kingdom is a possibilty, apoligizing profusely, offering to send them a couple billion dollars, maybe starting a couple of refineries and releasing all Iranians we now have in custody, may be planning on taking on taking into custody and oh yeah turning over the infidel Danish cartoon authors.
/big sarc (kinda)

LakeRuins on March 23, 2007 at 11:40 AM

Horatio Nelson is rolling in his grave. In the 19th century, there would be no diplomacy.

PRCalDude on March 23, 2007 at 12:05 PM

….and so it begins again….

CBarker on March 23, 2007 at 12:11 PM

Seriously, though, how could they be left so exposed, two inflatable boats without firepower nearby?

RW Wacko on March 23, 2007 at 11:28 AM

This is the operative question. I know when I used to do these ops during Storm 1 my destroyer was ALWAYS in sight. Its amazing how… polite… merchant ships get once a couple of 5 inch guns are pointed their way… and the 20… and the 50s…

That a couple of Iranian boats could “sneak up” on em during an op???

INCONCEIVABLE!!!

Either someone REALLY tacticly screwed up (CO of ship) or they blinked…. and due to “not wanting to escalate” allowed their sailors to be taken…

Either way, not a proud day for the British Navy…

Romeo13 on March 23, 2007 at 12:22 PM

If the Brits have already said they now oppose action against Iran, why wouldn’t Iran take a shot at someone they consider a historical enemy when they can be pretty assured they won’t pay a significant price?

And the sons shall suffer the sins of the father.

Iran has plenty of historical enemies and Briton is only one of them. Do you expect that Iran will attack everyone they see as a historical enemy? I almost wish they would as this is the only way the world will do anything to stop Iran. The UN, and the rest of the world, has continually ignored the Iranians attempt to control the Middle East and, as in the past, will do nothing about this.

No matter the outcome, this is a win/win scenario for Iran as they will continue to harass everyone until something is done to stop them once and for all. Unfortunately, the world’s leaders have no intention to stop Iran and will not offer any resistance to Iran’s provocations. That is a very sad state of affairs.

RedinBlueCounty on March 23, 2007 at 12:30 PM

Either someone REALLY tacticly screwed up (CO of ship) or they blinked…. and due to “not wanting to escalate” allowed their sailors to be taken…

Either way, not a proud day for the British Navy…

Romeo13 on March 23, 2007 at 12:22 PM

Exactly. Why didn’t the CO sail in closer when the Iranians came over the horizon? Why didn’t he at least recall them when he thought they were in trouble? Surely, the CO was on deck at the time. There’s no way he couldn’t have known that those guys were in the vicinity.

PRCalDude on March 23, 2007 at 12:30 PM

a few gems from winston churchill:

“We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender.”

“All the great things are simple, and many can be expressed in a single word: freedom, justice, honour, duty, mercy, hope.”

“Never give in. Never give in. Never, never, never, never — in nothing, great or small, large or petty — never give in, except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force. Never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy.”

and for fun…

Lady Astor: “Sir, you are drunk.” Churchill: “And you, Madame, are ugly. But in the morning, I shall be sober.”

fulhamfc on March 23, 2007 at 12:37 PM

It is time somebody explained the history behind the opening lines of “The Marine Corps Hymn”.
It invloves a Col Decatur and 16 Marines and a place called Tripoli and why they were there.

LakeRuins on March 23, 2007 at 12:37 PM

From the latest BBC article:
The frigate’s commander, Commodore Nick Lambert, said he was hoping there had been a “simple mistake” over territorial waters.

“There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that they [British personnel] were in Iraqi territorial waters. Equally, the Iranians may claim they were in Iranian territorial waters.

“We may well find that this is a simple misunderstanding at the tactical level.”

Yep….BLINK. One screwed up ROE on this one for sure.

Limerick on March 23, 2007 at 12:38 PM

Simple screwups over territorial waters don’t result in 15 of your guys getting captured.

PRCalDude on March 23, 2007 at 12:40 PM

I’m praying that my bad vibes about Ahmadinejad coming to NYC are wrong. I just don’t have a good feeling about this nutcase, who wants to see Armegeddon in his lifetime and doesn’t mind sacrificing himself for the cause, coming into our country with a plane load of who knows what and who knows who on board.

Having the British ticked off is part of the plan. Don’t expect a quick release.

LonelyMassRepublican on March 23, 2007 at 12:40 PM

Simple screwups over territorial waters don’t result in 15 of your guys getting captured.

PRCalDude on March 23, 2007 at 12:40 PM

I agree PR…..it is a case of the Admiralty leaving their backbone in Portsmouth.

Limerick on March 23, 2007 at 12:42 PM

Romeo13, that’s what I was wondering. I just can’t imagine they didn’t have a big boatoad (pardon the expression) of muscle backing them up on this mission. Furthermore, I can’t believe they didn’t see them coming soon enough to provide cover for their vulnerable personal or get them out of there. Were they simply so afraid of a confrontation they allowed the sailors to be taken? Were they literally caught off-guard? What are the rules of engagement in this situation? What’s going on here?

Too many questions…

taznar on March 23, 2007 at 12:44 PM

Suffice it to say, that Captain has about zero respect in his own wardroom now, much less in the rest of the fleet.

PRCalDude on March 23, 2007 at 12:48 PM

Iran has plenty of historical enemies and Briton is only one of them. Do you expect that Iran will attack everyone they see as a historical enemy?

Yes. Both directly and through their proxies such as Hezbollah, most definitely. In fact, they have been for years.

Who do you think Israel was fighting? Who do you think is funding the vast majority of insurgents in Iraq? Who do you think is No. 1 on the State Depts list of state sponsors of terrorism? Who is the driving force for establishing a Shia Caliphate? Who funds and trains groups such as Hamas, Hezbollah, al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade, Islamic Jihad, etc? Who blew up the Khobar Towers? What country (besides Pakistan) contiues to provide sanctuary for senior al Qaeda leaders driven from Afghanistan after the fall of the Taliban? And on and on and on…

What other country in the world has it’s leadership proclaim on an almost weekly basis that they are determined to wipe another sovereign country off the face of the earth?

Iran does have many historical enemies. As far as it’s current leadership is concerned, the US, GB and Israel are their primary enemies and I expect them to contiue to attack us, as they have for years, until we decide to stop them.

JackStraw on March 23, 2007 at 12:53 PM

I can only speak about the situation when I was there in 91… but with the Iranian naval “Excercises” going on right now, guarenteed they were at least at condition 2… wartime steaming, with Guns manned…. probably not at GQ (too hard on the crew)… But I’m sure there were Air Assets in the area on call… helos and fast movers (2 dam Aircraft Carriers in Theatre)…

IMO what probably happened? Iranian boats showed up and while the Captain was trying to get an answer as to what he should do from upper echelon of the Chain of Command… who in turn was asking the dam diplomats… the men were taken.

Romeo13 on March 23, 2007 at 12:54 PM

Were they simply so afraid of a confrontation they allowed the sailors to be taken?

After re-reading that, I want to clarify that I meant politically afraid of a confrontation. I have no doubt their comrades were ready, willing and able to do whatever it would take to provide cover. But if they don’t get that order…

I know someone had to make a tough decision, I just wish I understood more about how and why it was made.

taznar on March 23, 2007 at 12:56 PM

The Iranians claim the entire Gulf. They do not recognize that its international water like the other Gulf States and UN do… therefore their argument will be that the Brits had no jurisdiction to be in those waters.

When two governments claim jurisdiction over the same territory, they are implicitly at war with one another.

The moment Iran attempted to assert sovereignty over those waters, they were just like Saddam doing so over the ‘Iraqi province’ of Kuwait, or Argentina doing so over the ‘Malvinas’, or when Iran violated US sovereignty over our embassy in Tehran.

At that point, a state of war exists between the Islamic Republic and the United Kingdom, whether either party identifies it as such or not.

If Tony Blair had half the gumballs of Maggie Thatcher, he’d tell ArmageddonJihad that all Iranian vessels anywhere, including waters internationally recognized as Iranian territory, are subject to seizure, until they formally renounce their claim to the entire Gulf and agree to the same limit of their sovereignty that the UK, US, Iraq, and other Gulf governments recognize.

Further, they have one hour to return all the sailors unharmed, after which time all Iranian assets, whether on land, sea, or air, are subject to such attack as the Coalition Forces may deem appropriate.

The Monster on March 23, 2007 at 1:03 PM

The Type22 Frigate:

‘Ideal’ flagship They also possesses command and control and communication facilities, making them ideal flagships, according to the Royal Navy.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/6484363.stm

So much for spin.

Starting to hum “I got those yellow stain blues, from my head to my shoes”.

Limerick on March 23, 2007 at 1:11 PM

Hey Brits,

Iran just drew a new “line of death.” Now, whatcha gonna do ’bout it? (Think Reagan.)

Mojave Mark on March 23, 2007 at 1:18 PM

Frickin’ Xerxes. I hate that guy.

If we don’t do something about Iran soon, rest assured I won’t be voting for Bush again …

Professor Blather on March 23, 2007 at 1:23 PM

This wouldn’t have happened if The Winston Churchill was there.

The *U.S.S.* Winston Churchill, that is.

Tony737 on March 23, 2007 at 1:24 PM

Iran can’t have meant to do this, not with Ahmadinejad set to address the Security Council tomorrow about the nuclear program and not to the British, who’ve been adamant in opposing any military action on Iran.

Are you freakin’ kidding me!?! You just don’t accidently kidnap British servicemen in Iraqi waters after warning the West that you were thinking about kidnaping US troops.

Opinionnation on March 23, 2007 at 1:25 PM

My hopes and prayers for the safe return of those British servicemen. Iran will get some “special attention” eventually (it’s inevitable) but for now, let’s get them home.

Yakko77 on March 23, 2007 at 1:25 PM

Iran’s not really helping itself.

amerpundit on March 23, 2007 at 1:25 PM

They’re just testing the west … and we’re failing.

We will eventually be at war with Iran, but count on the west to put it off until it is at the point that it will be much more costly than it would be to take military action now.

thirteen28 on March 23, 2007 at 1:53 PM

thirteen28, just like Iraq and Osama.

amerpundit on March 23, 2007 at 1:56 PM

Well, there’s a cranky recon group of U.S. Marines hangin’ out with nuthin’ to do at the moment…

tree hugging sister on March 23, 2007 at 2:05 PM

the question of wether it was an “oops” or not is simple to answer, if they are released in a day or 2 it wasn’t really planned, just a target of opportunity; if it was planned, we unfortunately won’t be seeing them for quite a while.

Unfortunately for the servicemen, the current Labour government doesn’t think that the UK needs a navy, their recent budget plan only has 43 ships… giving france a larger navy.

I do have to wonder what HRM is saying about this, though.

Canadian Imperialist Running Dog on March 23, 2007 at 2:09 PM

Unfortunately for the servicemen, the current Labour government doesn’t think that the UK needs a navy, their recent budget plan only has 43 ships… giving france a larger navy.

So much for “Britain rules the waves!” Like I said, Nelson is rolling in his grave. 200 years ago, Britain had an 800 ship Navy and 140,000 sailors, 70,000 of whom were pressed from us. Now look at them.

PRCalDude on March 23, 2007 at 2:11 PM

An island nation doesn’t need a navy? Earth to Britain.

PRCalDude on March 23, 2007 at 2:12 PM

The Brits don’t take kindly to their troops being abducted, if I were Ahmadinejad I would be letting them go REAL SOON.

Maxx on March 23, 2007 at 2:14 PM

Hmmmm… thinking on it a bit… I bet there were multiple US ships in the area as well, and the Iranians had no idea that they were brits, until they were commited…

Small boats… no real insignia often… bet they were really wanting to bag Americans.

Romeo13 on March 23, 2007 at 2:32 PM

Is it on? Is it is it is it?! Mommy are we there yet?!!!??

- The Cat

MirCat on March 23, 2007 at 3:44 PM

Breaking News: Iranian Mad-Man not coming to UN to talk, because evil US did not give his party visas (even though State Department says they did)… so the trip is cut off.

Real Reason: He has to stay home to behead 15 Brits.

Enoxo on March 23, 2007 at 3:46 PM

My guess is they will give up the Brits as soon as oil hits $65 a barrel. Their actions today got it up to $62. Iran just needs the cash so they are doing things to put jitters in the oil markets.

crosspatch on March 23, 2007 at 3:54 PM

Can we break the nukes out now?

Tim Burton on March 23, 2007 at 4:19 PM

Is it go time yet??? How many more dominos must fall…

Roark on March 23, 2007 at 4:57 PM

Can someone please tell me why, in the amount of time it took for them to escort the Brits into port in Iran, why our boys didn’t blow these asshole out of the water?

fusionaddict on March 23, 2007 at 6:39 PM

Can someone please tell me why, in the amount of time it took for them to escort the Brits into port in Iran, why our boys didn’t blow these asshole out of the water?

fusionaddict on March 23, 2007 at 6:39 PM

Hey! Give peace a chance. No more war for oil. We don’t want another Bush War! Diplomacy! Diplomacy!!!!

Or something like that.

Look, I don’t want to seem like a conspiracy nut, but, here at HA (not but, 1 day ago), we were saying that Jesse Jackson hadn’t had a good hostage crisis that he could negotiate lately. Now, less than 24 hours later…..

Question the timing? Yes!

JadeNYU on March 23, 2007 at 6:48 PM

Look, I don’t want to seem like a conspiracy nut, but, here at HA (not but, 1 day ago), we were saying that Jesse Jackson hadn’t had a good hostage crisis that he could negotiate lately. Now, less than 24 hours later…..

Question the timing? Yes!

…what color is that helicopter up there?

fusionaddict on March 23, 2007 at 7:24 PM

Would someone please grow a set and wipe these cavemen out of existence.. for crying out loud enough is enough..
weve got all these pretty stealth aircraft which could wipe them out and be home for dinner tommorow.

Viper1 on March 23, 2007 at 8:09 PM

I’d love to see us partner up with a proxy that no one would expect to take these jerkoffs out.

Like, bomb the hell out of one of their nuke plants or bases or something. Cockbiteninnyknob goes to the UN: “By the festering forelock of the mahdi, who is responsible for this?!?!”

Micronesian ambassador: “It was US, motherf***er! What, you wanna man up? Feelin’ froggy??? Bring it, bitch!!!”

fusionaddict on March 23, 2007 at 8:55 PM

Very simple. Return them unharmed or the full assets of the US Military will turn Tehran into a sheet of glass. No questions. no negotiations. no hesitations.

dallas94 on March 23, 2007 at 9:24 PM

And this is what happens when you are not united against an enemy. He is calculating that the Brits (and Americans) do not have the political strength to stand up to him. Iran is playing the odds, and by reading the papers they may be correct. No way would our Dems support us assisting the Brits in standing up to Iran, and the Brits are as divided as us.
This my little liberal troll friends, is what you have brought upon the good citizens of the world. This is just the beginning if you continue your insistence in weakening our President and his legal powers.
We are divided, the liberals have decided not to support the President, and we are shown as weak.

The wolves move in and take what they want, while the chickens squawk.

right2bright on March 23, 2007 at 10:24 PM

I can’t believe a bureaucratic snafu could actually have happened here; either he’s looking to back out, probably because of the hostage situation, or both sides have agreed that it’s better he not attend and this is the cover story. Standby for more.

Dinnerjacket figured out he’s toast if he puts foot in a free country. Yeah, we let you out of jail when your thugs let the sailors go. Weasel.

warriorlawyer on March 23, 2007 at 11:30 PM

The seizure of naval personnel happens from time to time. I’m old enough to remember the Pueblo and Mayaguez. Countries rarely go to war over things like this and usually resolve them diplomatically. In April 2001 a US spy plane collided with a Chinese fighter over international waters and the Navy EP-3e had to make an emergency landing at a Chinese air base on Hainan Island. We didn’t go to war, and actually ending up apologizing for landing without permission and regretting the death of the Chinese pilot before the Chinese would release the 24 US Navy personnel. The pilot and crew received citations for the emergency landing and for destroying all the sensitive equipment on the plane as they landed, with a damaged nose cone and one bad prop.

rokemronnie on March 23, 2007 at 11:37 PM

Now the BBC is implying that the U.S. was the one who dropped the ball:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/6489493.stm

Its commander, Commodore Nick Lambert, said he had “absolutely no doubt” the vessel had been in Iraqi waters, adding that it could be “a simple misunderstanding at the tactical level”.

This was supported by US military monitoring the movement of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards.

Dodge, fade, jink.

Limerick on March 24, 2007 at 1:23 AM

The seizure of naval personnel happens from time to time. I’m old enough to remember the Pueblo and Mayaguez. Countries rarely go to war over things like this and usually resolve them diplomatically.

The men of the USS Pueblo were held in captivity and brually treated for a year before the North Koreans released them. We naively believed that the North Koreans would honor the international law of the sea. But outlaws don’t respect the law.

After the Mayaguez (not a US naval vessel) was boarded by the Khmer Rouge while in international waters, Ford sent in the Marines to recapture the ship and recover the crew by force. We “went to war,” in other words.

Wikipedia has this to say:

The names of the Americans killed are the last names on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, as well as those of three Marines who were left behind on the island after the battle and who were believed to have been subsequently executed by the Khmer Rouge while in captivity.

Iran has a plan behind this. Don’t think for one minute that this is some kind of “disagreement” or mistake over what is or is not international waters, or overzealous commanders. The Iranians are deliberately pushing the issue with the Brits.

You’ll note that they are pushing just the Brits and not the US. The last time the USN tangled with them over Iran’s bad behavior, it was after they had captured some oil rigs and were dropping mines into the main channel. We proceded to sink half their navy, which may be why they aren’t pulling the same crap with ur people.

Iran needs to be taught another lesson.

I’m not sure why the Cornwall didn’t intervene when her officers saw her people being captured. A frigate has more than enough combat power to deal with the Iranian small boats involved.

georgej on March 24, 2007 at 1:56 AM

It is a joke to say this over at Ace’s place, but…I question the timing.
Why do this on the eve of Ahmadinnerjacket’s trip to the U.N. to get his sanctions spanking for Iran’s nuclear program? (And of course, Iran did this on purpose.)
I love it that the U.S. cancelled his visa, showing our solidarity with our British allies.
May God be with those hostage Brit sailors and Marines.
And Iran, keep it up–there are plenty of Americans who have been looking for a little payback since you took our embassy people hostage (another act of war, as was this) in 1979.

Jen the Neocon on March 24, 2007 at 2:36 AM

My advice: take the SAS and give the points, if there’s a rescue mission…

LagunaDave on March 24, 2007 at 2:49 AM