April 18, 2012
Teaching Iran a Lesson in Persian Gulf
David Winkler, Navy League
During the Spring of 1988, the U.S. Navy was engaged in Operation Earnest Will, which had as an objective to maintain freedom of navigation in the Persian Gulf as Iraq and Iran continued to fight a seemingly endless war. On 14 April 1988, lookouts on the Perry-class frigate USS Samuel B. Roberts spotted three mines ahead in waters northeast of Qatar. Immediately the frigate's skipper, Cdr. Paul Rinn, sent the crew to General Quarters. Unfortunately, in backing down the frigate hit a fourth mine, which blew a 21-foot hole in the port side, cracking the hull, and injuring ten Sailors. The damage control efforts of the crew have become legendary as they welded cable to the hull to keep the ship from breaking in half. Within a few days, allied minesweepers combed the area and found more...
TAGGED: U.S. Navy, Iran