Video: Royal Marine Captain says “fighting back was not an option”; Update: Col. Jack Jacobs rips sailors; Update: Iran rips press conference as, um, stage-managed

posted at 12:13 pm on April 6, 2007 by Allahpundit

I’ve got Col. Jack Jacobs’s reaction to this coming up, but the clip’s still uploading so it’ll have to be in an update. In the meantime, Sky News has all the video you’ll need in bite-size form; they weren’t beaten, but as you’ll see in the clip, “We Feared the Worst,” they were made to believe they were going to be executed at one point. Below you’ll find Capt. Chris Air explaining why the Brits didn’t resist. Barnett watched it live and was horrified.

air2.jpg

One clip that I don’t see here which I’ll try to cut is where one of them insists that their propaganda statements were always phrased conditionally — “we’re sorry if in fact we entered your waters,” “I can understand why the Iranian people would be upset assuming things happened the way you say they did,” that sort of thing. Here’s the video from last week of Chris Air and Felix Carman confessing on Iranian TV; the conditional statements have naturally been edited out.

Sky’s got a handy dandy bulletpoint treatment of the presser. Lots of updates coming here, including/especially Jacobs. Stand by.

Update: The Jacobs clip is up. He does not mince words.

Update: Sir Jonathon Band, the head of the Royal Navy, defended them in an interview earlier today:

Admiral Band also defended the way they acted in detention, despite criticisms that some had been too willing to give interviews and “apologise” for their actions.

“I think they acted with considerable dignity and a lot of courage. They appear to have played it by the rules, they don’t appear to have put themselves into danger, others into danger, they don’t appear to have given anything away,”he said.

“I think, in the end, they were a credit to us, the way they dealt with the situation when they were said goodbye to by the president.”

Update: Here’s the quote to which I referred above about the conditional nature of the confessions: “It was more like, according to this GPS map we’ve been given, then apparently we were in Iranian waters – and if that was the case we apologise.”

Update: Very quietly, the Brits have temporarily suspended cargo inspections off the coast of Iraq, a development to which I’m sure various unsavory parties will be taking full advantage. If they haven’t already:

In the deep south of the country, the Basra police commander said the type of roadside bomb used in an attack that killed four British soldiers on Thursday had not been seen in the region previously. Maj. Gen. Mohammed al-Moussawi’s description of the deadly weapon indicated it was a feared Iranian-designed explosively formed penetrator.

Two more of the bombs were discovered planted along routes heavily traveled by U.S. and British diplomats in Basra. Weeks earlier, the American military had claimed Iran was supplying Shiite militia fighters in Iraq with the powerful weapons, known as EFPs. They hurl a molten, fist-sized copper slug capable of piercing armored vehicles.

The appearance of EFPs in British-controlled territory coincides perfectly with a British standoff with Iran. Fancy that.

Update: We’ll probably never know what really motivated Iran here, but if I had to guess I’d guess it was to produce editorials in western newspapers like this:

Because the U.S. relationship with Tehran is likely to remain confrontational, Britain’s handling of the crisis offers a model worth studying. London did not posture or threaten the Iranians, which would have been counterproductive. Yet neither did it apologize for a territorial trespass it insists its sailors did not commit. It has since agreed to discuss with Tehran territorial issues and operations in the tense Persian Gulf, which is a good idea in any case…

The events of the last two weeks show how important it is that the Iranian government be deterred from acquiring nuclear weapons or the means to produce them. This lesson holds even if the tough economic sanctions required to dent Tehran’s bravado are equally punishing to Western, Russian and Chinese commercial interests, and even if mustering such international resolve requires the West to make unpleasant political compromises. But the crisis also shows that a Western strategy of speaking softly in public — with a big stick lurking in private — is more likely to succeed in changing Tehran’s behavior than explicit threats and bluster.

Except the “big stick” wasn’t lurking in private; it was sitting off the coast of Iran in the form of several U.S. aircraft carriers. No matter, though — the fact that the carriers didn’t need to be used to obtain the sailors’ release is evidence for doves that Iran can ultimately be dealt with peacefully, and even act pseudo-magnanimously when need be. You can already imagine Ahmadinejad’s speech to the UN next year, in which he compares and contrasts Iranian treatment of prisoners — illegally seized in another country’s waters, but never you mind that — to Abu Ghraib. They already had Faye Turney mention AG in one of her letters, in fact. The whole thing is aimed at persuading the left and the Third World members of the nonaligned movement that Iran has the moral high ground in its confrontation with the west. Shouldn’t be too hard given how eager they are to be persuaded.

Update: I missed this on Wednesday, but Toby Harnden of the Telegraph wasn’t waiting until the sailors were home to ask the $64,000 question: “Am I the only one who finds the conduct of the 15 on camera cringeworthy?”

Update: In a world of nuance, Iranian nuance is the most nuanced of all.

Iran’s state television said the British military “dictated” to its sailors what to say in a press conference Friday, in which they said they were pressured while in custody to admit to being in Iranian waters.

In its news report on the sailors, Iranian state TV said they held a “pre-organized” press conference in which “the British sailors only read from pages dictated to them.” “They made statements completely different from what they had said in Iran and claimed that they were in Iraqi waters when detained,” the TV newsreader said.

Update: Krauthammer draws the obvious lessons here about EU/UN impotence.

Update: Initial British estimates of the blast damage from the bomb that killed the four British soldiers indicates that it wasn’t an EFP, but the prime suspects are a wing of the Mahdi Army that’s now loyal to Iran. They also don’t address the Iraqi commander’s assertion that two bombs similar to EFPs were recently planted elsewhere.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Comment pages: 1 2

Wimps

Defector01 on April 6, 2007 at 12:14 PM

I don’t hold anything against what a captive says. Their top priority is to stay alive.

They can say anything the enemy demands, then set the record straight when they are freed. As in this case.

aunursa on April 6, 2007 at 12:16 PM

They are solders and their “top priority” is to resist and fight. They had a fast boat, they were armed and they had radio communications with their superiors. Instead of resisting and fighting the elected to quit and that’s unfortunate.

rplat on April 6, 2007 at 12:23 PM

Their top priority is to stay alive.

No doubt the top priority of these British “sailors” and “marines” was just that.

Fortunately for the security and safety of this nation, such is not the “top priority” of our servicemen and women when in harms way.

Fred on April 6, 2007 at 12:25 PM

Fighting back was not an option?

Yup, never before in British history has an outnumbered and outgunned force fought on rather than surrendering. They always surrendered first.

Lehuster on April 6, 2007 at 12:25 PM

Military members do not place survival as their highest priority, at least not in the American armed forces. Honor is, or ought to be, more valued than mere survival.

The Col is right. Derb is right. This episode is a stain on the British navy.

Bryan on April 6, 2007 at 12:26 PM

Their top priority is to stay alive.

Why even have a military at all, if all they want to do is “stay alive”? They don’t need to wear a uniform and serve overseas if their top priority is to “stay alive” – they should just stay home in Britain.

Lehuster on April 6, 2007 at 12:27 PM

I wonder how many real soldiers would have had to have risked their lives if a rescue of these clock-punchers had become necessary.

pedestrian on April 6, 2007 at 12:28 PM

They were in 2 RHIB’s and were surrounded by what I believe was SIX armed speedboats. They were hardly in a position to fight. Still, perhaps the destroyer/frigate they deployed from could’ve came to their aid. That ship should’ve been enough to handle a few speedboats but I do not know how far away the destroyer/frigate was from the incident.

Yakko77 on April 6, 2007 at 12:28 PM

That jackass certainly wasn’t a captive BEFORE they were apprehended.

A total clusterfrick.

benrand on April 6, 2007 at 12:29 PM

I don’t hold anything against what a captive says. Their top priority is to stay alive.

They can say anything the enemy demands, then set the record straight when they are freed. As in this case.

aunursa on April 6, 2007 at 12:16 PM

Spoken like a true surrender monkey civilian. It is NOT the militarys top priority to “stay alive”… if thats your top priority then DON’T join the military.

As to saying anything the enemy wants??? and then correcting it later??? You really show a total lack of understanding of propoganda, and how it works. All over the middle east, the ORIGIONAL statements are still being played. These statements will be dismissed by our enemies as lies and … guess what… propoganda.

Its a good thinkg our forefathers did not think the way you, or these “soldiers” (I use quotes to show my disgust) do, or there would be no freedom in America today.

Romeo13 on April 6, 2007 at 12:31 PM

Huh, “fighting back was not an option.” “The epitaph of the Western world.”

PRCalDude on April 6, 2007 at 12:34 PM

They were in 2 RHIB’s and were surrounded by what I believe was SIX armed speedboats. They were hardly in a position to fight. Still, perhaps the destroyer/frigate they deployed from could’ve came to their aid. That ship should’ve been enough to handle a few speedboats but I do not know how far away the destroyer/frigate was from the incident.

Yakko77 on April 6, 2007 at 12:28 PM

Do you really think that if the Brits had put up even the least resistance, that the Iranians would have fired on them? If they had started the shooting, it would have been the reason needed to lock down the entire Gulf… with the three carrier battlegroups on station.

Even a STANDOFF would have quickly brought help to the Brits, there WERE other units working in the area, and Air Assets on call.

Iran WOULD (IMO) have backed down… but the Brits surrendered without even a confrontation apparently.

Romeo13 on April 6, 2007 at 12:36 PM

I think conservatives need to read the writing on the wall and start emigrating from Britain. That culture has no will to live, and as soon as their imams tell them to, the Muslims are going to take over.

PRCalDude on April 6, 2007 at 12:36 PM

I wonder how many real soldiers would have had to have risked their lives if a rescue of these clock-punchers had become necessary.

pedestrian on April 6, 2007 at 12:28 PM

I would have, even though their actions disgust me. Those who wear their countries uniforms muct do their due diligence to stand with their Commrades in Arms.

As to wither they deserve to continue to wear the uniform, that is for the appropiate Officers to decide. But while they are still a member of the service, we can’t abandon them.

Opus M Rex, USArmy (Ret.)

opusrex on April 6, 2007 at 12:41 PM

I – I am an American, fighting in the forces which guard my country and our way of life. I am prepared to give my life in their defense.

II – I will never surrender of my own free will. If in command, I will never surrender the members of my command while they still have the means to resist.

III – If I am captured I will continue to resist by all means available. I will make every effort to escape and to aid others to escape. I will accept neither parole nor special favors from the enemy.

IV – If I become a prisoner of war, I will keep faith with my fellow prisoners. I will give no information or take part in any action which might be harmful to my comrades. If I am senior, I will take command. If not, I will obey the lawful orders of those appointed over me and will back them up in every way.

V – When questioned, should I become a prisoner of war, I am required to give name, rank, service number, and date of birth. I will evade answering further questions to the utmost of my ability. I will make no oral or written statements disloyal to my country and its allies or harmful to their cause.

VI – I will never forget that I am an American, fighting for freedom, responsible for my actions, and dedicated to the principles which made my country free. I will trust in my God and in the United States of America.

So, where’s the part about staying alive being the top priority? Then again, this is the US Code of Conduct.

Dread Pirate Roberts VI on April 6, 2007 at 12:43 PM

I got to play with some Royal Marines more than 35 years ago. Impressive.
These Royal Marines are either weak and cowardly or they are Castrati.
Today, I’d choose to play with the Korean shopkeepers I saw on TV in LA’s last riot rather than be burdened with these Royal Marines.
A monumentally sad day for the Angloshpere.

Stephen M on April 6, 2007 at 12:49 PM

I don’t see anything heroic about 15 sailors mounting a suicide mission against half the Iranian Navy at a time when Great Britain and Iran are not even at war. I think Col. Jacobs is failing to take the circumstances into consideration.

Now if these sailors possessed deeply classified information that simply could not fall into Iranian hands or if they were stationed to protect their fellow soldiers while they performed an important operation or even if this had happened in the middle of a war then I would agree with Jacobs that they should have fought to the death to serve their country and protect their fellow countrymen. But under the circumstances it seems fighting back would have resulted in nothing but their deaths when they had nothing important to protect or die for. If you really think dying is a better option than being humiliated and used for 2 weeks then that’s your prerogative, but I’m certainly on their side on this one. Col. Jacobs has been watching too much 24 I believe.

JaHerer22 on April 6, 2007 at 12:50 PM

got to play with some Royal Marines more than 35 years ago. Impressive.
These Royal Marines are either weak and cowardly or they are Castrati.
Today, I’d choose to play with the Korean shopkeepers I saw on TV in LA’s last riot rather than be burdened with these Royal Marines.
A monumentally sad day for the Angloshpere.

Stephen M on April 6, 2007 at 12:49 PM

I hear ya… worked with the Royal Marines, and even the French Foreign Legion… in the early 80s… I’m not sure what is happening to the West, but I’m disgusted.

Romeo13 on April 6, 2007 at 12:52 PM

If they’re willing to not only give in this easily, but not fight, then I’d say Britain’s gone. I’m not going to criticize the soldiers directly, because I’m not in the military, but oy.

amerpundit on April 6, 2007 at 12:53 PM

“when they had nothing important to protect or die for”

The watchwords of those that do not think that even their own personal freesom is not a value.

bbz123 on April 6, 2007 at 12:57 PM

JaHerer22 on April 6, 2007 at 12:50 PM

So, you don’t consider honor worth anything?

Or more importantly, you really don’t understand that they are winning the propoganda war? Which is causing our own internal politics to cause us to surrender???

In the 80′s we lost more soldiers a year to ACCIDENTS than we are now in Iraq. We currently loose more people to MURDER a year in America than we are loosing in this supposedly “unwinnalbe” war. In Storm 1, we went farther, in less time, fought more, with less loss, than any war in history. They out did Desert Storm during the invasion of Iraq.

And yet you, and those like you, would surrender! Why??? because Politicians and the ENEMY have convinced you we can’t win a war WE ARE WINNING!!!! And you think perception and propoganda are NOT IMPORTANT?????

God I’m glad cowards like you are not in the Military I used to serve.

Romeo13 on April 6, 2007 at 1:00 PM

Huh, “fighting back was not an option.” “The epitaph of the Western world.”

PRCalDude on April 6, 2007 at 12:34 PM

My greatest fear.

silenced majority on April 6, 2007 at 1:05 PM

Huh, “fighting back was not an option.” “The epitaph of the Western world.”

What an astute observation.

TheBigOldDog on April 6, 2007 at 1:06 PM

“He who fights and runs away, can run away another day.”

db on April 6, 2007 at 1:08 PM

Time for the Brits to leave. They don’t want to fight, and they don’t believe in the mission.

Iraq is screwed. In time, we’re screwed.

spmat on April 6, 2007 at 1:09 PM

Col. Jacobs has been watching too much 24 I believe.

JaHerer22 on April 6, 2007 at 12:50 PM

And you’ve been watching too much M*A*S*H.

spmat on April 6, 2007 at 1:11 PM

They were in 2 RHIB’s and were surrounded by what I believe was SIX armed speedboats.

That’s one of the pieces I’m still trying to put together. It sounds like there were only two initially, which were later jointed by more. I don’t know why they waited for the Iranian “backup” to arrive.

Another point is, if I rmember correctly, the sailors and marines had an armed helicopter escorting them. I don’t know exactly what capabilities it would have had, but I don’t think it would have been insignificant.

taznar on April 6, 2007 at 1:11 PM

Do you think that the Brits have a new boat/boats patrolling those waters right now or have they just scrapped that whole idea entirely after this? Do you think the Iranians (who are using those waterways to smuggle weapons into Iraq to kill our soldiers) actions have deterred the Coalition forces from patrolling those waters? I hope not. I hope we just doubled the amount of boats there and this time given them the instructions not to back down at the first sight of a gun.

Zetterson on April 6, 2007 at 1:19 PM

It’s sounds to me like a rules of engagement thing. The Iranians exploited the “don’t shoot till fired upon” rule to buy time for backup. They saw a weak point, and coalesced forces to exploit it. By the time the Marines knew they were under real threat, them waiting for the first shot would mean probable death.

Meh, we’re screwed.

spmat on April 6, 2007 at 1:19 PM

what is your mission?
Name, Rank and Serial Number…
what were you doing in our waters?
Name, Rank and Serial Number…
where does mickey mouse keep the his movie collection?
Name, Rank and Serial Number…

Kaptain Amerika on April 6, 2007 at 1:22 PM

Huh, “fighting back was not an option.” “The epitaph of the Western world.”
What an astute observation.

Not mine. From the link above.

PRCalDude on April 6, 2007 at 1:25 PM

Sorry guys and gals but I am standing on the other side of the line on this one. Ban me, paint me yellow, call me a surrender monkey, whatever puts jam on your bread.
Not only do the Iranians get the propaganda of being the ‘good-guys’ but they also get the satisfaction of watching America throw punches at England. Great. Have at it, decide the issue. John Quincy Adams didn’t side with the lynch mob. It is a good thing he didn’t, those Red Coats were innocent. Like I have said here before, when the judge hears and case, and a verdict is passed, I will accept outcome.

Limerick on April 6, 2007 at 1:27 PM

spmat, you may be right. But that raises the next question, how did those Iranian boats even get there without being greeted with the Brits’ own backups? All the accounts make it sound like they were taken by surprise. Maybe that’s the advantage the Iranians have in using smaller vessels -they’re hard to detect until they’re on top of you.

taznar on April 6, 2007 at 1:27 PM

I’d like to hear John McCain’s reaction to all this. I know he probably wouldn’t tell us his true feelings because he’s a politician running for president and all, but I bet his thoughts would be quite interesting if we could hear them. I’m not a McCain fan, but I respect and admire his service to the country and the courage it must have taken to endure his time as a POW–a real POW, who endured real hardships.

aero on April 6, 2007 at 1:28 PM

excuse me;;;;;John Adams

Limerick on April 6, 2007 at 1:28 PM

Do you think that the Brits have a new boat/boats patrolling those waters right now or have they just scrapped that whole idea entirely after this?…
Zetterson on April 6, 2007 at 1:19 PM

An unsourced commentor over at Townhall indicated that it seems they’ve suspended all inspections and that, as of Thursday, a type of Iranian roadside bomb had appeared near Basra which had not been seen previously.

eeyore on April 6, 2007 at 1:29 PM

Do you think that the Brits have a new boat/boats patrolling those waters right now or have they just scrapped that whole idea entirely after this?…
Zetterson on April 6, 2007 at 1:19 PM
An unsourced commentor over at Townhall indicated that it seems they’ve suspended all inspections and that, as of Thursday, a type of Iranian roadside bomb had appeared near Basra which had not been seen previously.

eeyore on April 6, 2007 at 1:29 PM

Wow. Just wow.

Zetterson on April 6, 2007 at 1:34 PM

First off not having been there the rest is second guessing.

I think doing everything possible to get the ROE broken so that the Cornwall could engage would have been most important.
Either by making a run for the nearest armed ship or evasive tactics or maybe a few rounds across their bow anything to get the Iranians to break the ROE.
The result would have been Iranians in custody in Iraqi waters not Brits in custody in Iraqi waters.

These are military personnel, not civilians, name, rank and serial number, screw smiling for the camera and even a nuanced confession.

Speakup on April 6, 2007 at 1:35 PM

Churchill is rolling in his grave

Viper1 on April 6, 2007 at 1:38 PM

An unsourced commentor over at Townhall indicated that it seems they’ve suspended all inspections and that, as of Thursday, a type of Iranian roadside bomb had appeared near Basra which had not been seen previously.

I’ve posted updates about both of those things in this very thread.

Allahpundit on April 6, 2007 at 1:41 PM

Romeo13 on April 6, 2007 at 1:00 PM

Do I consider honor worth anything? Of course. Is it worth my life? No, not by itself. If it was honor defending my country or honor protecting my family, then yes, that is worth dying for. But honor just for the sake of saying I didn’t surrender, no, not a chance.

The same with propaganda. Yes, it’s very unfortunate they were used for Iranian propaganda but if given the choice to die or be in enemy propaganda that I could later renounce, I would pick the propaganda every time. Maybe you wouldn’t, maybe you’d rather die the shake hands with Ahmadinejad, and that’s fine, that’s your prerogative. So you call me a coward for choosing the latter, fine, I’ll call you irrational and stupid for choosing the former.

JaHerer22 on April 6, 2007 at 1:43 PM

This is how Western military dominance ends- not with a bang, but with a smile and a wave.

tyler999 on April 6, 2007 at 1:44 PM

And you’ve been watching too much M*A*S*H.

spmat on April 6, 2007 at 1:11 PM

I’ve never seen an episode of M*A*S*H in my life.

JaHerer22 on April 6, 2007 at 1:45 PM

I think of the stories I have heard about how the U.S. captives beat their own faces up so they couldn’t be presented to the media by the N. Vietnamese… We have come far from that time.

On another note, had I been at the press conf. I would have asked what was in the Iranian goodie bag! Don’t you want to know?

Babs on April 6, 2007 at 1:45 PM

I’ve always been an anglophile, but if you noticed how they behaved when Diana died, none of this should come as a surprise.

Attila (Pillage Idiot) on April 6, 2007 at 1:45 PM

I’ve posted updates about both of those things in this very thread.
Allahpundit on April 6, 2007 at 1:41 PM

Sorry AP, lot’s of link-clicking is not always followed up by my careful review of what else appears.

eeyore on April 6, 2007 at 1:48 PM

My two cents-
Since Britain and Iran are not at war you don’t automatically start blasting away when Iranian gunboats approach. Had the Iranians been firing while approaching it would be different. It would be similar to the US Coast Guard and the Mexican Navy (if there is such a thing??) having a confrontational dispute – it might be better to talk first.

Having said all that it clearly appears the Iranians planned out this abduction carefully. They probably knew using radar the escort helicopter was back at the mother ship. Blair should put the Iranians on notice future kidnapping attempts will be resisted using all means.

The conduct of the Royal Marines during captivity is appalling – kind of like the two Fox reporters converting to Islam to keep their heads attached.

One question – what happened to the translator working with the Royal Marines? I didn’t see him with the group.

Texas Mike on April 6, 2007 at 1:48 PM

An unsourced commentor over at Townhall indicated that it seems they’ve suspended all inspections and that, as of Thursday, a type of Iranian roadside bomb had appeared near Basra which had not been seen previously.
I’ve posted updates about both of those things in this very thread.

Allahpundit on April 6, 2007 at 1:41 PM

Ooops sorry Allah. I went straight from watching the Col Jack Jacobs clip to posting. Perhaps it would have been wise to read the whole thing before doing that. Anyways, I’m very dissapointed to learn that my fears are in fact confirmed.

Zetterson on April 6, 2007 at 1:48 PM

My follow on question would have been, was there a girl goodie bag and a boy goodie bag? You know, just like at a 6 year old’s party?

Babs on April 6, 2007 at 1:48 PM

There is one plus to this. Make no mistake- right now, all over the world US military officers and NCO’s are telling their men (no doubt in quite vulgar language and with vivid scatalogical imagery) that if they are faced with a superior offensive force, they better come back in a body bag before they come back in an Iranian suit. And our sodilers agree…

tyler999 on April 6, 2007 at 1:48 PM

aero on April 6, 2007 at 1:28 PM

Before you go further, you may want to check a bit about McCain’s conduct as a POW.

First off not having been there the rest is second guessing.

Speakup on April 6, 2007 at 1:35 PM

Hmmm… condidering I used to do this for a living… Boarding and searching ship, during US Navy Law Enforcement Ops, and during 2 Stints in the Persian Gulf… I guess I could be considered as having a bit of knowledge about this…

Romeo13 on April 6, 2007 at 1:50 PM

Romeo13

Spoken like a true surrender monkey civilian. It is NOT the militarys top priority to “stay alive”… if thats your top priority then DON’T join the military.

Oh please … you don’t need to go ad hominem. Then you’re just lowering yourself to the level of the LLL’s who cry “chickenhawk” at any civilian support for military action.

My point is regarding specifically the sailors’ actions after they had been captured. I certainly don’t advocate a surrender if they were able to fight.

All over the middle east, the ORIGIONAL statements are still being played. These statements will be dismissed by our enemies as lies and … guess what… propoganda.

The enemy will twist anything and everything to use as propaganda anyway. Without this event, do you think the enemy would be at a loss for stories they can use to their advantage? Just look at how they’re using the Pelosi visit.

aunursa on April 6, 2007 at 1:52 PM

I know where there is stone with 58195 names engraved that may take offense with this persons statements. Name – rank – service number, then STFU!

Wade on April 6, 2007 at 2:05 PM

After Vietnam the Army changed its POW policy to say “resist to the best of your ability.” From the top on down they didn’t want anymore Hanoi Hiltons. All the intell that a soldier has once captured is only good for a short time so they can’t do that much damage unless you get a field grade (Major on up) captured.

Mojave Mark on April 6, 2007 at 2:06 PM

Whatever happened to name,rank,serial number. Hard to use that as propaganda

djohn669 on April 6, 2007 at 2:06 PM

It’s not surprising that the British suspended operations in the Gulf. How are they going to get any of their people to go on those ship-searching missions now, knowing that they will be left high and dry if the Iranians come back for seconds? All a ship captain can do is threaten to throw them in the brig. Compared with a stint in a Tehran cell, what kind of threat is that?
I know about the matter of honor, but frankly if I was a Royal Navy sailor or Marine I would be ashamed of my uniform right now.

Another nail in the coffin of Western Civilization.

Lancer on April 6, 2007 at 2:07 PM

Throughout this entire scenario, I have been thinking of Fabrizio Quattrocchi, the Italian civilian (no less!) who was taken hostage, and

as the assassins were pointing the gun at him, tried to take off his hood and shouted: ‘Now I’ll show you how an Italian dies’

INC on April 6, 2007 at 2:19 PM

Since Britain and Iran are not at war you don’t automatically start blasting away when Iranian gunboats approach. Had the Iranians been firing while approaching it would be different.

Texas Mike on April 6, 2007 at 1:48 PM

Btitain’s security was non-existent. Those Iranin boats should have been intercepted as soon as they entered Iraqi waters. Not enough support for the mission (air or sea) and not enough vigilance from the support that was there.

db on April 6, 2007 at 2:21 PM

aunursa on April 6, 2007 at 1:52 PM

So its your contention that we’ve already LOST the propoganda war?

Propoganda is only effective if there is “some” bit of truth in it which can be exploited…

You bring up Pelosi?? Yep, they are using it for propoganda because she IS WILLING TO GIVE UP!!!! Thats the truth.

These Brits giving interviews, in their own words? Admiting they were wrong??? Giving up without a fight???

There are only two ways to win a war, you either take away the enemies ability, or the will, to fight. Right now all across the Mahdrasas they are saying “See?? See how decadent they are, they won’t even FIGHT!!”

They sap our will, while we reinforce theirs by giving up without a fight… Pelosi and the Brits, you choose two interesting examples.

Romeo13 on April 6, 2007 at 2:22 PM

A Michael Ledeen column from almost three years ago:

Shortly after Pearl Harbor, Winston Churchill came over and addressed Congress. He asked, rhetorically, “Who do they think we are?” It was an important question, because we must understand what our enemies think about us. Churchill’s implicit answer was “They think we’re suckers, and they think we won’t be able to beat them.”

The fascists believed that we had become soft and effeminate, that we were so hooked on materialism and self-indulgence that they, the representatives of a younger, more virile, and more spiritually robust race (or nation), would easily dominate us and impose their will on us.

The terror masters have the same contemptuous vision of us. And if you look at the way they deal with our governments, you will see a mixture of contempt and bemusement, as they repeatedly get us to go for the same tricks and deceptions.

INC on April 6, 2007 at 2:24 PM

When will we declare economic warfare on Iran?
Any company doing business with Iran should have their stock dumped.

Kini on April 6, 2007 at 2:25 PM

That last paragraph is also a quote from Ledeen. The blockquote didn’t take for that one.

The terror masters have the same contemptuous vision of us. And if you look at the way they deal with our governments, you will see a mixture of contempt and bemusement, as they repeatedly get us to go for the same tricks and deceptions.

INC on April 6, 2007 at 2:26 PM

What do you have to be a eunuch to join the Royal Marines now?

They must have been issued new uniforms back in UK since they went home in bargain basement suits from the Seventies.

Military disgraces. I would have an Iraqi cover my back before a Brit any day after this.

Hening on April 6, 2007 at 2:28 PM

Our ‘so-called’ coalition is only as strong as it’s weakest members. It seems that the US was involved specifically just to cover this chink in the armor called the Royal British Navy.

Egfrow on April 6, 2007 at 2:30 PM

Yup, never before in British history has an outnumbered and outgunned force fought on rather than surrendering.

They were outnumbered four to won in the Battle of Britain and the RAF still oiutfought the Nazis. It’s an easy mistake though. I think the problem is cultural. The British Left have been in government and they are ruining Britian in every way possible with massive helpfromt he BBC. Even the Tories are surrendering. Blair is the worst British Prime Minister since David Lloyd George in my opinion. If his “legacy” is the destruction of Britain he will be the worst in its history.

aengus on April 6, 2007 at 2:30 PM

For those who say there was nothing to gain by fighting back, I have a question.

Which is more likely to inspire the Iranians, et al, to take more hostages or engage in similar actions in the future?

1. The potential hostages see they are at a disadvantage in fire power so they surrender, make propaganda filmes for the enemy, accept gifts, smile for the cameras and are released after an agonizing 13 days of captivity?

OR

2. The potential hostages see they are at a disadvantage in fire power, yet still fight back with every means at their disposal, eventually being overrun, killed or captured, but only after inflicting casualties and carnage on their captors. They then refuse every attempt to “Scare” them into making propaganda videos, refuse to accept gifts, or smile for the cameras and put their captors into the position of having to resort to actual physical torture, to which they resist to their best of their ability and only give in when they have reached their own personal abilities?

Under which of these scenarios is it possible for Iran to come out looking like the “good guys”? Under which scenario would the world be outraged, shocked, saddened and yet resolved to condemn the Iranian actions?

These Brits were a disgrace, absolute tools of the enemy and saying anything less is pure cowardice.

Fatal on April 6, 2007 at 2:30 PM

“they stay alive so that they can fight another day … ”

It’s another day; where’s the fight?

(*crickets chirping)

* * * * * *

Disgusting…

ar_basin on April 6, 2007 at 2:31 PM

Steve Centanni…

Wait, did these Brits convert?
(Honest question)

ar_basin on April 6, 2007 at 2:34 PM

I don’t understand something…Isn’t being surrounded, at gunpoint, by froces from any nation, “immenent danger”? And as Air just said in that clip, they were in Iraqi waters.

And another reason not to “fight back” was that Iran isn’t at war with our side…then please tell me why they would enter another nation’s waters to take into custody another nation’s troops with whom they are not at war?

I’m still seeing a bit o’ grovelling at Iran’s feet here…

JetBoy on April 6, 2007 at 2:35 PM

There’s an HK movie, Breaking News, that has some similarities. During a running gun battle on the street, the HK police are humiliated when a cop drops his gun and surrenders to the robbers in front of a news camera. The rest of the movie involves hostage taking and both sides manipulating the media for their own purposes.

If public opinion turns negative, the British may be forced to become more aggressive to rehab their reputation.

For the film buffs, it starts with an 8 minutes single take shot a la Touch of Evil, except that it centers on a gunfight in an alley instead of a bomb and a couple crossing the border.

rw on April 6, 2007 at 2:35 PM

but if given the choice to die or be in enemy propaganda that I could later renounce, I would pick the propaganda every time.

Holy Crap!! What do you think would have happened if the Iranians had executed these folks? Do you think that was ever a realistic outcome? Don’t British Sailors and Marines have the capacity to even “think” before surrundering everything these days?

I am on my knees thanking God right now that I never had to serve next to pussies like you. Sheesh, do you have any idea what this kind of attitude has on the minds of your fellow captives who are trying to resist, who aren’t as cavalier or as pukingly cowardly as you are.

Lord!

Fatal on April 6, 2007 at 2:37 PM

Sorry…just to add yet another question…

Why did these guys take off their uniforms and don those cheap Iranian suits before they left Iran? That was the final straw for me…

Not to mention those wonderful goodie bags…gifts from the great Iranian people…

Blech…

JetBoy on April 6, 2007 at 2:38 PM

Tammy Bruce voiced her disgust right out of the box…as did myself and many of her readers.

The Military Code of Conduct makes things pretty clear on what is expected of you.

The Ugly American on April 6, 2007 at 2:42 PM

I wouldn’t want these guys watching my back.
I still don’t understand why they would have been so exposed in the first place. Even before they had to fight back, someone should have been covering their asses, and it only takes seconds to launch a couple of harriers.

If they worried worried about “escalation”, I’m sure some well placed 25 mm rounds in front of the Iranian boats would have discouraged them. If that didn’t work, they could have turned some Iranians into chum on the next pass, and so on…

No one knows what these psychos will do to a captive, I just assume being captured is a fate worse than death when Islamists are involved. It’s better to take a bullet, than to be beheaded on video, or tortured.

Something is not right in the chain of command.

reaganaut on April 6, 2007 at 2:47 PM

For the film buffs, it starts with an 8 minutes single take shot a la Touch of Evil, except that it centers on a gunfight in an alley instead of a bomb and a couple crossing the border.

OT: I love that film. Have you seen the restored version, reedited according to Welles’ original notes?

aengus on April 6, 2007 at 2:52 PM

Rourke’s Drift.

archon2001 on April 6, 2007 at 2:54 PM

…[W]hat was in the Iranian goodie bag! Don’t you want to know?
Babs on April 6, 2007 at 1:45 PM

It might be interesting to get hold of one of those swag bags if they come up on eBay. Although overstating the case a little, it would be like getting hold of the non-aggression pact Neville Chamberlain waved in front of British cameras in 1938. Chamberlain was a much more witting participant, but it’s the same “look how much being nice fixes things”.

eeyore on April 6, 2007 at 2:55 PM

Remember Star Wars? No not the movie the program started under President Reagan. Well looks like it is starting to yield some er, results. Hey not the best outcome but it is a start.

MOODY AIR FORCE BASE, Ga. — An airman suffered second-degree burns during an evaluation of a non-lethal heat-ray gun this week in south Georgia, officials said.

The injured airman was taken to the Joseph M. Still Burn Center at Doctors Hospital in Augusta after the incident Wednesday. He was not identified.

Maybe the AF will want to review it’s proposed force reductions.
Just trying to help!

LakeRuins on April 6, 2007 at 2:58 PM

Yup, never before in British history has an outnumbered and outgunned force fought on rather than surrendering.

heh – or Rorke’s Drift…

reaganaut on April 6, 2007 at 2:59 PM

It might be interesting to get hold of one of those swag bags if they come up on eBay.

eeyore

haha, Didn’t even think about that…but I wouldn’t be suprised…

Until then, ebay does list this bit of proud American history regarding hostages in Iran…

JetBoy on April 6, 2007 at 3:01 PM

From Plutarch’s Sayings of Spartan Women

“[A] Spartan woman killed her son, who had deserted his post, because he was unworthy of Sparta. She declared: ‘He was not my offspring…for I did not bear one unworthy of Sparta.’” (Plutarch, Sayings of Spartan Women, 241.1)

Harcore.

tyler999 on April 6, 2007 at 3:04 PM

Shouldn’t be too hard given how eager they are to be persuaded.

They need no persuasion, as they ‘arrived’ a while ago. They’re fully captivated by the charms of little Ahmi.

Entelechy on April 6, 2007 at 3:05 PM

The fascists believed that we had become soft and effeminate, that we were so hooked on materialism and self-indulgence that they, the representatives of a younger, more virile, and more spiritually robust race (or nation), would easily dominate us and impose their will on us.

The terror masters have the same contemptuous vision of us. And if you look at the way they deal with our governments, you will see a mixture of contempt and bemusement, as they repeatedly get us to go for the same tricks and deceptions.

They are right to hold us in contempt. We are – as a society writ large – soft, effeminate, materialistic, and self-indulgent. The Brits are further down the road than us, but we’re not so far behind them as you might think.

Lehuster on April 6, 2007 at 3:15 PM

“Courage shall grow keener, clearer the will, the heart fiercer, as our force faileth”

“But English silver is not so softly won:
first iron and edge shall make arbitrement,
harsh war-trial, ere we yield tribute”

Somewhere near Essex, Byrhtnoth and his fallen host are spinning in their millennia-old graves at the sad state of their weak, soft-bellied heirs.

Citizen Duck on April 6, 2007 at 3:16 PM

I blame the officer in charge here. If I were under his command, I would have obeyed him and surrendered, not willingly but because I was ordered to. I can’t fault those in the group who followed his order.

archon2001 on April 6, 2007 at 3:21 PM

They are solders and their “top priority” is to resist and fight.

Absolutely not! Their top priority is to obey their commanders. They didn’t escalate the situation by fighting and that was the best choice. (Had they been fired upon without cause, I’d back the “resist and fight” response, though.)

JinxMcHue on April 6, 2007 at 3:28 PM

Jocobs should be directing his disgust, not at the sailors and marines, but at the country of Britain. Britain is now a Politically Correct country, where any show of aggression is forbidden. The sailors and marines were only performing what their PC government calls their ‘de-calatory military strategy’.

As such, not one gun was raised, nor shot fired, because the British motto today is: Don’t fight, negotiate. Don’t fight, appease.

What the Brits have managed to accomplish is a total denial that their attempt to appease Hitler during WWII ever happened. Their appeasement, as you well know, resulted in Hitler fire-bombing London.

Their ‘de-escalatory strategy’ can only lead to one path – humiliation, which is what we saw in the videos and pictures from Iran.

This is what Trafalgar’s and Nelson’s country has come to. Utter capitulation when an enemy goes – BOOO!

pocomoco on April 6, 2007 at 3:33 PM

Jinx- orders from a commander can lawfully be disobeyed if they are illegal or not in accordance with the military codes of justice. Depending on the situation, if your commander orders surrender, you are not only morally, but LEGALLY obligated to disobey- you probably won’t be held accountable if you DON’T- but if you fight on when your commander has ordered surrender on insufficient grounds, it is the commander who will stand before a court.

tyler999 on April 6, 2007 at 3:36 PM

Oh, I see…

They must have been French,

not British!

Melba Toast on April 6, 2007 at 3:37 PM

Piling on. And piling on and on and on and on. Too many pundits. Too many armchair commanders. Too many “experts.” Why not take this all the way back to the beginning. Do the proper ‘forensic’ study? If these Britts were given ‘rule of engagement’ during these searches what were they? And was not this action sanctioned by the UN? Not that that means anything thing to us Americans but the Euroweenies give them credibility.

And I would simply ask “What would you do given the same circumstances?” You have to know every detail to be able to come up with the right understanding of what happened. And WTF gives any credence to a PSMBC reporterett and the so called ‘expert’ they got? Pretty rhetorical I know.

So all this makes for just interesting b.s. newscycle. the immeadiate question I had was how will this effect the continued searches of the scumbag ships of Iran. That was in part answered above by some of your updates AP. So ‘someone’ is going to have to stop the b.s. from Iran and stop and search those ships. Keep the pressure on those bastards.

auspatriotman on April 6, 2007 at 3:39 PM

I wonder what Winston Churchil would think of this.

JayHaw Phrenzie on April 6, 2007 at 3:42 PM

I wonder what Winston Churchil would think of this.

It’s the same kind of bs he put up with for six years (1933-39) so just look up his old speeches.

aengus on April 6, 2007 at 3:48 PM

Death is not the worst that can happen to men.

Glynn on April 6, 2007 at 4:19 PM

Comment pages: 1 2