US Ready for Iran Attacks: Ships, Patriot Anti-Missiles in Persian Gulf
January 31, 2010
(ChattahBox)—-Gen. David H. Petraeus together with administration officials, recently indicated that the United States has been quietly shoring up its defensive presence in the Persian Gulf, in the event Iran decides to wage missile attacks in the region. The defensive deployments consist of Aegis cruisers stationed off the Iranian coastline and Patriot anti-missile systems positioned in several Arab countries. According to a report by The New York Times about the new beefed up deployments; the defensive systems are meant to reassure Israel and other Persian Gulf countries, as well as increase pressure on Iran as the U.S. pushes for international sanctions.
According to the report in The New York Times, the U.S. wants to send a strong signal to Iran, as the nation continues to defiantly move forward with its nuclear development programs:
“The deployments are also partly intended to counter the impression that Iran is fast becoming the most powerful military force in the Middle East, to forestall any Iranian escalation of its confrontation with the West if new sanctions are imposed. In addition, the administration is trying to show Israel that there is no immediate need for military strikes against Iranian nuclear and missile facilities, according to administration officials who spoke on the condition of anonymity.”
Military officials confirmed that the countries of Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Kuwait had agreed to accept American defensive weapons. The countries in the Persian Gulf are becoming increasingly uneasy about the threat posed by Iran’s nuclear capabilities. “Iran is clearly seen as a very serious threat by those on the other side of the gulf front,” said General Petraeus.
Aegis cruisers on patrol in the Persian Gulf are considered the first line of defense, which have advanced radar and antimissile systems capable of intercepting medium-range missiles.
Administration officials told the New York Times that the enhanced defensive deployment has three goals. “Our first goal is to deter the Iranians,” said one official. “A second is to reassure the Arab states, so they don’t feel they have to go nuclear themselves. But there is certainly an element of calming the Israelis as well.”
Israel has publicly stated in the past that it would take steps to protect its country from an Iranian attack, by taking out the Islamic nuclear sites if necessary.
See The New York Times for more.