Thursday, March 29, 2007

Times: Iranian Kidnapping Pre-meditated

The Timesonline reports that Iranian Revolutionary Guards attacked and abducted 15 British sailors using tactics that indicate the operation was a carefully planned act of piracy, rather than a spur-of-the-moment decision by a local commander:
The British sailors and marines being held by Iran were ambushed at their most vulnerable moment, while climbing down the ladder of a merchant ship and trying to get into their bobbing inflatables.

Out of sight of their warship and without any helicopter cover, their only link to their commanders was a communications device beaming their position by satellite.

That went dead as they were captured. One theory is that it was thrown overboard to prevent the Iranians getting hold of the equipment and the information it contained.
The Ministry of Defence has released coordinates showing that the Brits were not in Iranian waters, as claimed by Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

A deliberate act sanctioned by Iran's government would indicate that the regime will not release the kidnapped sailors without major concessions, and might welcome a limited war to help stifle domestic unrest. In other words, a measured military response would play into their hands.