Cold War brinksmanship ca 2015: Iran and the world confront each other in Yemen

The Carrier Battle Group led by the USS Theodore Roosevelt was on its way to the Gulf of Aden recently. The Fifth Fleet force was scheduled to replace the USS Carl Vinson on a regular rotation. According to confusing statements from the White House the Carrier Group was being sent to shadow and interdict a task force of 8 Iranian ships including freighters which allegedly are ready to unload arms and supplies for Houthi Rebels in Aden. Iran is generally being acknowledged to be supplying and supporting the Houthis. Two Iranian warships are escorting the cargo. Russian Navy ships also have been in the area recently evacuating Russian nationals from the civil war stricken country. An unknown number of American citizens are still reported stranded in Yemen as the White House refused to evacuate them. The US embassy was evacuated and the Marine guards were ordered to not only unload their weapons but surrender them to rebels. This is the ultimate insult to a Marine.

According to latest news reports the Iranian convoy changed course and is leaving the area. The Carrier Group is also leaving the area to resume its assigned station.  Was this a test or a reconnaissance in force?  In recent months the Cold War procedures of testing defenses by sending bombers off the US Atlantic and Pacific Coasts to determine American readiness has been resumed by Russia.  Flights have been intercepted off Britain and other NATO countries’ borders as well. The United States’ unprecedented actions in the revolution in Ukraine and sanctions against Russia for its annexing The Crimea have resulted in an antagonistic attitude in both countries. Why the Obama Administration is playing this form of brinksmanship with a nation that had been active in combatting Islamic terrorism is an additional mystery. The Iranians are now playing the game of brinksmanship and are doing quite well. It is discomforting to America’s former allies in the region to think what will happen when Iran controls the sea lanes. The Saudis have also been urged to scale back their air attacks so as not to antagonize the Iranian proxies.

The critical nature of the Straits of Aden cannot be overstated. The Iranians can close the Straits of Hormuz and almost did in the 1980’s. The Reagan Administration began escorting tankers through the waterway and engaged the Iranian Navy by air attacks, sinking several vessels. The Iranians ceased to attack the sea lanes by ship and small attack boats. However, Chinese Silkworm missiles still control the area and can be used to close the Strait at any time. Yemen is a poor country but Aden is a critical point on the sea control map. Control of Yemen means control of the Strait of Aden and closing off shipping lanes means economic catastrophe to those nations importing oil from the region. Russia has a tight energy supply control grip on much of Europe as well. The growing alliance of these two nations has serious financial implications for the globe.

A new video released by The Caliphate/ ISIS claims that forces are now in Yemen to fight the Houthis. The conflict has intensified and the city of Sana’a is under attack. The renewed Cold War is now reborn in the Middle East. Whether by error, miscalculation or incompetence, the Obama Administration continues to confuse and mystify its friends and seemingly give aid and comfort to its enemies.

Perhaps as disturbing to informed persons is the recent disclosure that the United States has all but acknowledged that Iran is either in possession of or within several months of having nuclear warheads. The Caliphate sect within Iran does not need a large scale attack on Israel or the United States to bring about its version of The Islamic Apocalypse. It would be to Iran’s advantage to merely instigate a nuclear exchange between Russia and the United States. Many commentators have stated that the world environment of today eerily resembles that of early 1914. Intertwined alliances, proxy nations acting on provocation from shadow puppet master states and the digital instant environment that can launch missiles and warheads on seconds. Add to this the indefinite and obtuse actions of the Obama Administration and the nuclear powder keg is due to explode. The constantly changing scene in the region is seemingly beyond the grasp of a distant and detached Washington. Israel’s stalwart stance and seeking its own interests with a new batch of previously unthinkable allies is the only semblance of continuity on a world stage of geopolitics.

About the Author
Tom Brennan is a former museum curator, library adminstrator, small business owner, sheriff's deputy, Arabian Breeding Farm Manager, cowboy, farmer and author. He writes for
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