The U.S.S. Port Royal.[/ALIGN]
Well while I was on break it seems that three Iranian speedboats took a
little joyride around or near three U.S. Navy warships in the Strait of
Hormuz. The navy ships, with the U.S.S. Port Royal (CG-73) taking point,
kept a close watch on the little Iranian boats — especially after their
communications systems picked up a threatening message over the airwaves
saying "I am coming to you. You will explode in a few minutes." The
speedboats were also seen dumping white boxes of some sort off of the
boats; and, unlike normal smugglers are prone to do in those waters,
were paralleling their course with the side of the Port Royal.
Though the boats approached by some reports as close as 200 yards to the
U.S.S. Port Royal, its captain, Capt. David Adler, kept his cool and didn't
Now, c'mon. You just know that this was on purpose — Iran later said
that this kind of thing "happens all the time" in the Strait. And it does.
But not exactly that way.
Another unusual aspect of the thing was that the men in the Iranian
boats were wearing life preservers. You would think that you wouldn't
have to worry much about life preservers if you were a suicide bomber.
Which I'm sure made things even more confusing for Capt. Adler.
The U.S.S. Port Royal is a top-of-line, Aegis-equipped guided missle
cruiser. Besides a shitload of surface-to-air and anti-submarine
missiles, it also carries the MK-15 Phalanx Weapons System. Here's an
edited-down description of that bad boy —
"The MK-15 Phalanx CIWS is a fast-reaction, rapid-fire 20mm gun
system…Each mount consists of three main parts: the white "head"
containing the track radar, the gun (six barrels) and below the gun
there is the magazine. The gun is able to fire more than 3,000 rounds
per minute. These bullets are made of [depleted] uranium…non-
radioactive and much harder than steel."
Uh huh. Besides that, the Port Royal is also protected by more conventional
means by two .54 caliber, two .25 millimeter, and four .50 caliber machine
Now if you are a suicide bomber, of course, you really don't care about
all of that. Your aim is primarily to die a glorious death defending the
Klingon Empire or whatever. So you really don't care if you will (without
a doubt) be blown to a million pieces in about seven seconds by the type
of firepower found on the U.S.S. Port Royal. And that's before you can
even get within a hundred yards of your target.
The truth of the matter is that Iran knows how touchy the U.S. is these
days, and exactly the type of person we have in the White House — and
they are willing to play us. They've been feeling rather good lately with
the help of Putin and Russia. So they are more than willing to come on
like Pinocchio dancing in front of the alien in Alien Vs. Predator.
Fortunately for us, the ship's captain responded well to the incident —
getting his ship ready for attack but not opening fire even with all the
strange crap happening such as the radio message and the white boxes.
You have to wonder, though, how much longer this kind of tension between
the U.S. and Iran can go on before some tiny little thing happens and all
hell breaks loose.
Just a pleasant day for water skiing
in the Strait of Hormuz.