If Israel attacks Iran, we must evacuate our naval ships from the Persian Gulf before the Strait of Hormuz is blocked by damaged or sunken oil tankers. As you can see from the above closeup from Google Earth, the shipping lanes take a sharp corner that I believe must be navigated at a reduced speed for large ships. The shipping lanes are already very narrow due to the numerous islands and partially submerged rocks. We want to avoid a repeat of the Costa Concordia incident.
Once the Strait is closed, it will require weeks or months to clear the wreckage, especially under hostile conditions. During that time our ships will be targets for Iranian missiles and small boats. I believe that our naval aviation will easily defeat the Iranian air force, but their missiles and torpedoes will put our navy to a severe test. I don’t know how effective their defenses are; let us use 95% as an example. That means for every hundred Iranian missiles launched at US ships, 95 will be destroyed without damage to our ships and 5 will not, and will cause damage. Even if our effectiveness is 99%, one in one hundred missiles will reach its target.
Then imagine in a numbers game that Iranians launch hundreds of missiles at one time to overwhelm the US defenders. Can our ships survive that sort of attack? I don’t want to find out. The sinking or severe damage to an US nuclear aircraft carrier could cause more casualties than occurred on 9-11.
- USS Abraham Lincoln Crosses Strait of Hormuz Under Vigilant Eyes of Iran [PHOTOS] (ibtimes.com)
- Defying Iran: US Sails Strait of Hormuz (abcnews.go.com)
- Strait of Hormuz: US aircraft carrier shadowed by Iran in Gulf (politico.com)