Should we believe that they suddenly and mysteriously lost communications with both boats at the same time?
Fortunately for all of us, this didn't lead to more war, killing and destruction (at least not yet - is it over?)!
Their quick release was hailed by the Obama administration as an unintended benefit of the new diplomatic relationship with Iran established by the nuclear accord negotiated between Tehran and the United States and five other nations in July
The Iran story is frankly embarrassing,” said one senior Defense Department official, who also spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss internal assessments. “We still do not know all of the facts, but these guys and gal apparently were just poor mariners.”
The boats’ crews would almost surely have mapped out their course in advance, paying close attention to the Iranian boundary waters. And each boat has radio equipment on board, so it was unclear how the crews suddenly lost communication with their base.
“Look, these are kids riding around in cool, cammy boats,” said the Navy officer, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss operational details,
One of the sailors, apparently the lieutenant, apologized for entering Iranian territorial waters.
“It was a mistake; that was our fault, and we apologize for our mistake,” the sailor said. “My navigation system showed I was in Iranian waters but I made a mistake and entered.”
After first suggesting that a mechanical failure had disabled at least one of the boats, they acknowledged that there was no mechanical problem. Both boats were returned to the United States under their own power.
Our boats were “trespassing” in Iranian waters near a major naval base. But the Pentagon and the State Department said that the boats were en route from Kuwait to Bahrain on a routine mission.
"I think that this much is clear, there was a navigational error of some kind," he said at a press conference on Thursday. "All the contributing factors to that we don't know yet, and we're still talking to those folks, and we'll find out more ... but they were clearly out of the position that they intended to be in."
“This incident in the Persian Gulf, which probably will not be the American forces’ last mistake in the region, should be a lesson to troublemakers in the U.S. Congress,” Major General Hassan Firouzabadi, head of Iran’s armed forces, was quoted as saying by Tasnim news agency.
Anyone who thinks the adversarial relationship between Washington and Tehran has turned into “détente” due to the nuclear deal is living in Never-Never Land. Our close ally, Saudi Arabia, has all but declared war on the Iranians and that means we are being dragged into the rapidly escalating conflict. In this context, two US military boats coming a mile and a half away from a major Iranian base in the Gulf isn’t an accident. This ‘training mission” was a military incursion, and although we have no way of knowing what mission the US hoped to accomplish, suffice to say that it wasn’t meant to be a kumbaya moment.
What we certainly can know is that the official explanation for this latest incident stinks to high heaven.
This map shows all the commissioned and noncommissioned ships of every size as of April 2015. The ships are organized by size, from the humongous aircraft carriers at the top to the smaller ships at the bottom. Take a look: