Hormuz Strait Just Got a Lot Narrower for British Ships as London Admits It Can’t Protect Them

London admits British ships sail through Hormuz at the mercy of Iran, asks them to stay away

Just made the Hormuz Strait a lot dicier for British shipping

When Iran seized the British-flagged Stena Impero the Royal Navy warship was 16 minutes away which may as well have been decades.

The British defense minister is now having to explain that it is simply not possible to escort each and every British commercial ship through the Strait — the Royal Navy can’t deploy anywhere the number of vessels that would take.

Instead London has advised British shipping to “stay out of the area for an interim period”.

There are more British ships moving through the Strait than the Royal Navy can protect, if the Iranians wants to seize them. London is now hoping many of them will stay away. 

If that happens, then its Navy can perhaps escort the smaller number of tankers that nonetheless want to make the trip, else they will have to start considering convoys. Or perhaps the shipping companies will brave the trip anyway calculating that Iran feels it has retaliated enough for now and won’t seek to escalate further. (Which I think is the correct calculation for now.)

Whichever is the case, one thing is certain. The servility of the British government to Imperial agendas and the personal ambition of Jeremy Hunt have just made life a lot more complicated for British commercial ships sailing past Iran, and also exposed the miltary weakness of Britain when it has to exercize power far from its shores on its own.

What may happen however is that the Americans seize on the opportunity to take the escort job for themselves — but it is not certain that they will, and if they do it will only lead to more uncertainty and tension.

In any case, a debacle for London in an emberassing overreach the consequences of which any serious statesman should have been able to predict.

Yet Hunt continues to blather about a “robust reaction” that “WILL ensure the safety” of British safety, even as his fellow defense minister explains that is not possible:

  1. […] Hormuz Strait Just Got a Lot Narrower for British Ships as London Admits It Can’t Protect Them […]

  2. JustPassingThrough says

    The increase in the cost of maritime insurance will probably dry up all ship traffic through the straits now that IR has boarded a couple of boats and the murikans having proved their incompetency by shooting down their own drone.

  3. JNDillard says

    The nature of power is to push until it over-reaches. Then it faces a deconstruction of its own causation. We are seeing that process being played out for the US, EU, and the Gulf States at present.

  4. Grand Nagus Zek says

    nope – the empire wont protect them

    bluff called and pompeo and the US threw Jeremy the idiot under the bus

    ROFL https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/b55659af752542576f67f19ac888f3a8f3bd8c5700fa2460f4bc12e9ca878868.jpg

  5. Aurum Cimex says

    The Americans are fully aware that their ships are sitting ducks in the Gulf and much prefer the dull witted Jeremy Hunt to send Royal Navy ships as bait. What a guy. He’s managed to involve Britain in a dispute that didn’t involve Britain at all for absolutely no benefit or legal justification. This is the calibre of UK Remainer politicians.

    1. Margaret Swift says

      America wants a war but it does not want history to say it was not them who started the war, so now it’s trying to get history to say it was Britain’s fault

  6. John C Carleton says

    Maybe, if you are a British has been military power, you don’t want to go around trying to bluff at the at the poker table when your pockets are empty and the other players have plenty of assets

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