It All Depends on the Meaning of “Full Responsibility”

 

maersktigrisTwo days ago, in the Strait of Hormuz–an internationally recognized shipping lane–the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps Navy fired shots across the bow of the Marshall Islands-flagged MV Maersk Tigris, then seized the vessel. They are holding the ship and the 24 crew members.

According to the Chief White House Correspondent for CBS News, Pentagon lawyers have determined the United States “has no obligation to come to the defense of a Marshall Islands-flagged vessel at sea.”

Here’s the text of the Compact of Free Association, as amended and signed in 2003, between the the United States and the Marshall Islands.

How do you interpret these words? Marshall Islands

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  1. user_82762 Inactive
    user_82762
    @JamesGawron

    Front Seat Cat:SEE CNN HEADLINE NOW BEFORE IT GOES AWAY – 3:02 PM CENTRAL – BREAKING –

    http://www.cnn.com/2015/04/30/politics/us-navy-escort-cargo-ships-iran-strait-of-hormuz/index.html

    FSC,

    Looks like the U.S. Navy is going for the full court press in the Persian Gulf. Read this “Iranian Revolutionary Guard, try this garbage again and we’ll blow your toy boat out of the water.”

    Not as good as it could be but it moves assets into position if we want to lean on them even more.

    Stay tuned.

    Regards,

    Jim

    • #61
  2. user_82762 Inactive
    user_82762
    @JamesGawron

    Claire & All,

    Check this out.

    Iran says warships at entrance to key Yemen strait

    “The information that the Iranian ships received warnings and left the area is not correct,” Sayari said, insisting that Iran will not enter “the territorial waters of other countries” in reference to Yemen.

    Saudi Arabia, which heads a Sunni Arab coalition conducting air strikes on Yemeni rebels since March, has imposed an air and sea blockade.

    Sayari said the two destroyers would stay posted around Bab el-Mandab until late June.

    Iran is still trying to run the blockade. If I were the Saudis I’d make preparations for blowing the Iranian warships out of the water. With U.S. help or without.

    Safety first.

    Regards,

    Jim

    • #62
  3. EstoniaKat Inactive
    EstoniaKat
    @ScottAbel

    Bryan G. Stephens:Obama has already made clear he does not believe in defense of allies. If I were Russia, I’d invade the Baltics now.

    I cringe every time someone writes that.

    Not that the premise is absurd in the present context. But why take on that reoccurring historical headache that the Baltics have created for Russia/Soviet Union (the Baltic Way, etc.) unless you plan to shoot everybody not Russian? It wouldn’t be about port access, that Russia has addressed in the last decade, or the flow of goods. There’s really no economic rationale.

    Not that war is necessarily a rational animal.

    • #63
  4. Barfly Member
    Barfly
    @Barfly

    Mike LaRoche:In addition to hating America, its traditions, and a majority of it’s people, the low-rent Bolshevik currently occupying the White House also hates America’s allies. Had Republican leaders any courage, they would impeach him forthwith.

    I think they’ve got as much courage as the average person. Their actions and omissions display their preferences. I think Republican leaders are in favor of most of the things Obama does.

    • #64
  5. Ricochet Inactive
    Ricochet
    @RobertMcReynolds

    I am coming in late to this topic, but let me just say that this incident–for lack of a better word–is not to be looked at in a vacuum.  I think the administration is not looking at it in a vacuum, but in the totality of the situation.  The Middle East, particularly the Gulf region, is on fire right now and this is simply another log thrown in that fire.  Iran has the upper hand.  They have the GCC scrambling for answers in Yemen.  Non-GCC states are not really doing much to help the situation.  ISIL and Iran/Iraq are locked in a fierce battle to the north of the GCC, and as long as Iran continues to be a major threat Saudi Arabia is going to hope that ISIL can continue bleeding Iran without themselves become too powerful.  Iran knows all of this and is taking advantage of the fact that the US is not going to become fully involved with what is going on, especially since the administration is so desperate for a nuclear deal, even a terrible one.

    There is likely going to be a big mistake made this weekend that is really going to stoke the flames in the Gulf.  Iran is counting on it.  The GCC has blundered themselves into doing it.  And the US can’t stop it.  This merchant ship is just a symptom of what is going on there.  Obama dare not do anything, or risk being drawn in.

    • #65
  6. user_82762 Inactive
    user_82762
    @JamesGawron

    Robert McReynolds:I am coming in late to this topic, but let me just say that this incident–for lack of a better word–is not to be looked at in a vacuum. I think the administration is not looking at it in a vacuum, but in the totality of the situation. The Middle East, particularly the Gulf region, is on fire right now and this is simply another log thrown in that fire. Iran has the upper hand. They have the GCC scrambling for answers in Yemen. Non-GCC states are not really doing much to help the situation. ISIL and Iran/Iraq are locked in a fierce battle to the north of the GCC, and as long as Iran continues to be a major threat Saudi Arabia is going to hope that ISIL can continue bleeding Iran without themselves become too powerful. Iran knows all of this and is taking advantage of the fact that the US is not going to become fully involved with what is going on, especially since the administration is so desperate for a nuclear deal, even a terrible one.

    There is likely going to be a big mistake made this weekend that is really going to stoke the flames in the Gulf. Iran is counting on it. The GCC has blundered themselves into doing it. And the US can’t stop it. This merchant ship is just a symptom of what is going on there. Obama dare not do anything, or risk being drawn in.

    Robert,

    There is no mysterious totality to the situation. There is only Obama’s fantasy solution of backing Jihadists and in particular the Jihadist State. Iran is a pure aggressor nation. It has created a civil war in Yemen to gain control of the Gulf of Aden and blackmail the Saudi’s and Egypt. This is also a direct territorial threat to Saudi Arabia. Sitting were it is Yemen can be used as a staging area for Jihadist attacks on the Saudis themselves (not to mention America).

    This is all about the blockade. The Houthi will fold soon without resupply from Iran. The blockade plus the bombing is breaking them. The Iranians are trying to run the blockade. The Persian Gulf maneuver is intended to divert and disrupt the effort on the blockade. The Iranian ships are still hanging off the coast of Yemen, waiting for an opening. The only mistake we can make is to let them through. That is why I hope the Saudis are prepared to stop the Iranians ships themselves. If Obama believes he can trust the Iranians just great. Nobody else on the face of the earth believes you can trust the Iranians. Not in the Middle East, not in Europe, not anywhere.

    Regards,

    Jim

    • #66
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