US Navy fires on small boat in the Persian Gulf“A U.S. military supply ship fired Monday at a small boat in the Persian Gulf after it came too close, apparently killing one person on board,” anonymous U.S. government officials have reported to CNN.
The ship in question, USNS Rappahannock, is a fuel resupply ship, which would presumably make it a tempting target for a USS Cole type of bombing attack.
The small boat, described as a “pleasure craft,” ignored repeated verbal warnings and a warning shot, plus “flashing lights and lasers,” according to MSNBC. Instead, it made “a series of maneuvers” that brought it within 1200 yards of the Navy vessel. At that point, an attempt was made to disable the approaching craft with a 50-caliber machine gun, reportedly killing one person on board and injuring three others.
The incident occurred 10 miles away from the huge Dubai port of Jebel Ali. It is currently believed the boat was crewed from the United Arab Emirates or India, but the incident occurred soon after Iran’s latest threat to shut down the Strait of Hormuz unless sanctions imposed against its nuclear weapons program were lifted. Both the U.S. Navy and the United Arab Emirates have said the incident is under investigation.