Two days ago we posted on the incident in which the guided missile destroyer USS Mason came under missile fire from Iranian backed militias in Yemen. The missiles, fired as they were by Arabs, did no harm. Now it has happened again:
A U.S. Navy destroyer was targeted on Wednesday in a failed missile attack from territory in Yemen controlled by Iran-aligned Houthi rebels, the second such incident in the past four days, U.S. officials told Reuters.
The USS Mason, which was accompanied by the USS Ponce – an amphibious transport dock – fired defensive salvos in response to the missiles, neither of which hit the ship or caused any damage as it operated north of the Bab al-Mandab Strait, the officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity.
Where the first attack was a very simple attack relying on the ballistic properties of the missile, this one is more sophisticated:
The rebels appeared to use small skiffs as spotters to help direct the missile attack on the warship. The United States is also investigating the possibility that a radar station under Houthi control in Yemen might have also “painted” the USS Mason, something that would have helped the Houthi fighters pass along coordinates for a strike, the officials have said.
The Houthis, who are allied to Hadi’s predecessor Ali Abdullah Saleh, have the support of many army units and control most of the north including the capital Sanaa.
Reuters has learned that the coastal defense cruise missiles used against the USS Mason on Sunday had considerable range, adding to concerns about the kind of heavy weaponry that the Houthis appear willing to employ and some of which U.S. officials believe is supplied by Iran.
Eventually, they will get this right. You can’t continue to let them fire at you with impunity and not expect that eventually they will get lucky. And the you have the USS Stark all over again.
Obama is playing a profoundly dangerous and irresponsible game in the Persian Gulf. He has deluded himself into believing that he can make the Iranians into a partner for stability in the region. He’s wrong. Every sane person in the world knows he’s wrong. The only question is how many Americans he will kill before he is either convinced or leaves office. And never fear, Hillary Clinton will do the same thing.
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