- - Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Five Iranian boats equipped with machine guns and missile-launchers came within a few hundred yards of the USS New Orleans in the Strait of Hormuz yesterday. A top American general was on the bridge of the ship at the time.

Asymmetric warfare or the use of small boats against the colossus of the U.S. Navy has long been a hallmark of Iranian strategic thinking. If American ships become used to such “interactions” and if the Iranians did decide to strike, reaction time would be minimal and most likely ineffective against the threat. The boats were from the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corp, a hardline Iranian military force.

“What concerns me is our people don’t always have a lot of time to deal with those interactions,” said Gen. Joe Votel, head of U.S. Central Command, as he stood on the bridge of the amphibious ship later in the day. “It’s measured in minutes to really have the opportunity to make the right decision,” Fox News reported.

“It’s very common for them to come up to within 300, 500 yards of us, and then they’ll turn, or parallel us and stop,” said Lt. Forrest Griggs, the New Orleans’s operations officer. “We try not to become accustomed to that because we don’t want to become complacent.”

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