We’re getting news from the Pentagon that two U.S. Navy boats have been detained by Iran. Ten U.S. sailors are reportedly on board.
As the Washington Free Beacon reports:
Two United States Navy boats have been taken into Iranian custody, the Pentagon said Tuesday.
Defense officials said that Iran told the U.S. that the crew will be “promptly” returned, CNBC reported.
The Pentagon lost contact with the two small Navy boats Tuesday when they were moving through the Persian Gulf, the Associated Press reported. According to Pentagon press secretary Peter Cook, both boats were traveling between Kuwait and Bahrain.
“We have been in contact with Iran and have received assurances that the crew and the vessels will be returned promptly,” Cook stated.
According to NBC News, Iranian military forces are holding the boats on the island of Farsi in the Persian Gulf. Ten American sailors were aboard the two riverine patrol boats for a training mission when one of them began experiencing mechanical problems, officials said. It remains unclear whether the boat drifted into Iranian territorial waters before it was seized.
Search and rescue teams from the USS Harry S. Truman strike group attempted to help the crew but stopped after the boats and sailors were captured by the Iranian military, according to USNI News.
While acknowledging that the information is early and coming in a sketchy manner thus far, Col. West had this to say about the breaking news, based on what we know:
The Iranians have been testing the limits in the Persian Gulf since the nuclear agreement. They have been emboldened. The Iranian fast boats have been conducting very provocative actions. I’m not buying into a story about our sailors wandering into Iranian territorial waters. We’ve been patrolling there for sometime, so we know those seas. And even if the sailors’ boat went dead in the water due to engine difficulty, they were in twos, and the other could have towed a malfunctioning craft.
Something just does not sound right, and we shall get the rest of the story.
We’ll be monitoring the situation closely to see what unfolds. Though Iran promises to return the ships “promptly,” the last time something similar happened — when Iran captured 15 British naval personnel for allegedly invading Iranian waters in 2007 — they held them for two weeks.
But hey, we must be much better off now that we’ve extended our hand to Iran with this much-lauded nuclear agreement brokered by President Obama and is team, right?
Riiiiiight. As Col. West notes, the last thing President Obama should do tonight is tout the Iranian nuclear agreement as a success.
[Note: This article was written by Michelle Jesse, with insight from Col. West]