Navy Claims Iran Is Involved in Ship Attacks

Rockets silhouettes background Iran flag. Toned

( – The US Navy is claiming that Iran has direct involvement in the recent ship attacks in the Red Sea by Houthi rebels from Yemen in response to Israel’s ongoing war on Hamas.

Vice Adm. Brad Cooper, leader of the 5th Naval Fleet and one of the Navy’s top commanders in the Middle East, told reporters on Monday, Jan. 22, that Iran is “directly involved” in the ship attacks by the Houthis. The admiral stopped short of accusing Tehran of organizing the ship attacks themselves, which have been ongoing in the Gulf of Aden and the Red Sea for months now.

In a telephone interview with the Associated Press, Cooper said the actions by the Houthi on merchant ships have been “the most significant” the Navy has seen “in two generations.” He accused the radical group from Yemen of “attacking the international community” by targeting trade ships, which has garnered an “international response.”

Attacks associated with or directly backed by the Iranian government used to be contained within the Persian Gulf rarely went beyond the Strait of Hormuz, yet have since expanded into waters covering a wider area of the Middle Eastern coast.

Around 34 attacks have been launched by the Houthis since November, following the Oct. 7 attack on Israel by Hamas and the Jewish state’s subsequent invasion of the Gaza Strip to weed out the radical Palestinian group. The Houthis, who are Shiite Muslims, have sided with the Palestinians and are specifically targeting ships arriving or leaving Israeli ports. The group has controlled Sanaa, the capital city of Yemen, since 2014, and has been engaged in an ongoing war with the exiled government backed by Saudi Arabia.

Although initially targeting ships linked to Israel, the Navy said attacks have also been launched at ships with little to no links to the Jewish state.

The US has already conducted joint military operations with the UK to strike back on Houthi positions in Yemen, targeting rebel air bases and other suspected launch sites. The escalation in conflict is the first sign of direct US involvement since the Oct. 7 attack by Hamas.

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