Just nine months after hosting the biggest multinational mine-warfare exercises “ever” to be held in and around the Persian Gulf, the Navy’s 5th Fleet and its foreign partners outdid themselves with a second, even larger wargame. More than 20 nations participated in September’s International Mine Counter-Measures Exercise 2012, collaborating against fictional ecoterrorists whose capabilities were suspiciously… Keep reading →
CORRECTED: Fixes Number of Minesweepers in US Ports 9:35 am 10/1/2012
Officially, despite rising tensions with Tehran, the enemy in in the international naval wargames that kicked off in the Gulf this week is not, repeat not, Iran: It’s radical environmentalists. Very, very well-armed environmentalists.
Against this fictional Greenpeace gone rogue are set the ships, aircraft, and divers from more than 20 nations, including an unprecedented concentration of Navy minesweepers, eight of which are now in the Gulf — a surge the Navy told Breaking Defense it cannot sustain long into 2013. Keep reading →
WASHINGTON: While the Littoral Combat Ship is not suited for the front lines of a war with China, it would provide vital protection to US supply lines in such conflict, said Under Secretary of the Navy Robert Work, and against Iran, LCS would be in the battle from “day one,” with eight LCSs ultimately operating out of Bahrain. Indeed, the two potential theaters of war are so different that the Navy may consider focusing the “much more maneuverable” Lockheed Martin version of the LCS on fighting fast attack boats in the narrow waters of the Persian Gulf, while the very different General Dynamics design, with its larger flight deck and fuel tanks, operates primarily in the vast reaches of the Pacific. Keep reading →
CNO Downplays Gulf Tensions Even As Navy Sends More Ships – Calls Iranian Navy “Professional And Courteous”By Sydney J. Freedberg Jr.
The Chief of Naval Operations, Admiral Jonathan Greenert, detailed the Navy’s build-up in the Persian Gulf today, but he downplayed the prospects of any immediate conflict with Iran – even as the fleet develops new weapons for coastal combat and plans to double its deployment of minesweepers and upgunned patrol craft to Bahrain.
“I will tell you the Iranian Navy has been professional and courteous, they’ve been good mariners, they’ve operated in accordance with the rules of the road,” Adm. Greenert told reporters at a breakfast talk in Washington, D.C. By contrast, the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps, which operates its own naval forces independently of the regular Navy, “has on occasion violated decorum and rules of the road. Those are the incidents you read about in the paper where small boats get too close,” he said, “[but even] they’re not ramping up.” Though there are “occasional” minor provocations by the Guard Corps, overall Iranian military activity is at normal levels, Greenert said. Keep reading →