Print 48 comment(s) - last by Martin Blank.. on Jan 5 at 8:26 PM

Surface-to-sea missile could target U.S. ships in the Gulf

Iran is one of the nations of the Middle East that much of the world watches closely. The country has a history of threats on those in its region and has been working to build its military might including a uranium enrichment program that has led to sanctions by the U.S. and other countries.
Iran has now announced that it has tested a new naval cruise missile in the Strait of Hormuz. The missile test was conducted during the final day of a 10-day military maneuver. The missile is called the Qader and it is a surface-to-sea weapon designed to destroy enemy ships. Iranian Admiral Mahmoud Mousavi said that the missile struck the intended target with precision and destroyed the target.

[Source: Vancouver Sun]

Iran offered the first glimpse of the missile in August of last year reports the NYT. The weapon is said to have a range of 125 miles, which would allow Iran to target some of the U.S. ships that are operating in the Gulf region. While some officials in the Iranian government have in the past threatened to disrupt shipping through the Strait of Hormuz, Mousavi has denied that the exercises have anything to do with such a blockage. The narrow Strait is a vital shipping lane for oil.
Admiral Mousavi said, "We won’t disrupt traffic through the Strait of Hormuz. We are not after this."
The firing of the Qader missile isn’t the only weapons test that occurred during the exercises. The Iranian Navy also tested a short-range surface-to-air missile called Mehrab. The Iranian state news agency IRNA quotes Admiral Habibollah Sayari of the Iranian Navy saying, "[These military exercises promote] peace and friendship for all countries in the region." He also said that the exercises send a message that foreigners had no room in the region reports the NYT.
Iran also recently claimed to have forced a U.S. drone to land where it wanted using a GPS hack.

Source: NYT

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Which countries ?
By Gondor on 1/3/2012 11:17:36 AM , Rating: 2
The country has a history of [...] attacks on those in its region

Apart from Iraq-Iran war that certain superpowers sponsored and Iraq started I don't recall any Iranian attacks on their neighbours, at least not in recent times (less than 100 years ago). Ironically enough it was its neighbour Iraq that started just about every single war in the region, with the exception of 2003 US-British attack.

Care to elaborate on that one ?

RE: Which countries ?
By dsx724 on 1/3/2012 11:34:41 AM , Rating: 2
Poorly researched sensationalism?

RE: Which countries ?
By Natch on 1/3/2012 1:53:35 PM , Rating: 4
Actually, they do have a record. Check out the story of the USS Samuel Roberts, and an Iranian mine.

RE: Which countries ?
By Amedean on 1/3/2012 9:22:14 PM , Rating: 2
Having been in Iraq twice and Afghanistan, I know Gondor has spent little time in research of his statement. The Iranians in my AO of Bayji were bold enough to label some of their IED's with "Made in Iran". Iranian operatives also supply and train some elements of the Taliban. Then there are the Hezbollah connections where they train, finance and indirectly participate in their campaign to destroy Israel by provoking attacks on citizens. Other things like kidnapping and torture of civilians that include their own people. Yes, a very polite country indeed.

RE: Which countries ?
By MrBlastman on 1/4/2012 12:12:32 PM , Rating: 3
It is also important to point out while on the topic of sensationalism--is that this is not a cruise missile at all. A cruise missile generally is propelled by a jet engine--something this missile clearly is not using. The pathetic 125 mile range is also a giveaway.

This is nothing more than a fancy RGM-84 Harpoon missile or Exocet missile with a little more range. Nothing to be scared of here--well, nothing our Phalanx CIWS defense systems can't blow out of the sky.

Keep trying, Iran. ;) I throw my foot covering garment at you!

(Spam filters prevent me from using the obvious word--/fail)

RE: Which countries ?
By OoklaTheMok on 1/3/2012 12:46:04 PM , Rating: 2
Iran has a past history of attacking oil tankers in the Gulf region. Their weapon of choice was the Silkworm missile.

RE: Which countries ?
By Martin Blank on 1/5/2012 8:23:39 PM , Rating: 2
The Silkworm use was more than 20 years ago, and even then it was of little use against real military vessels. Though they have better weapons now, I'm not sure they would fare well against a US military vessel.

And Iraq was shooting up ships, too, managing to hit the USS Stark with two Exocets. I don't think either country hit any military vessels not each other's during the war.

RE: Which countries ?
By ChugokuOtaku on 1/3/2012 12:50:04 PM , Rating: 2
I guess they counted the hostage crisis as an "attack"... lol

RE: Which countries ?
By danobrega on 1/3/2012 2:35:21 PM , Rating: 4
mmmm, lets see, what other country has an history of attacks on that region.

RE: Which countries ?
By Shig on 1/3/2012 3:38:54 PM , Rating: 1
Walking softly and carrying a big stick is getting too expensive imo.

RE: Which countries ?
By Solandri on 1/3/12, Rating: 0
RE: Which countries ?
By LRonaldHubbs on 1/3/2012 8:44:47 PM , Rating: 1
First of all, that graph doesn't show the increases in defense spending post 2001. Secondly, it doesn't compare US defense spending to any other countries. You can't meaningfully conclude how big our stick is unless you compare it to everyone else's sticks. Anybody got a Peter Meter handy?

RE: Which countries ?
By FITCamaro on 1/4/2012 9:27:41 AM , Rating: 2
Any graph you layer against other countries spending you also need to layer against whether or not they rely primarily on OUR military for protection as well as the value of their currency.

RE: Which countries ?
By Martin Blank on 1/5/2012 8:26:09 PM , Rating: 2
Most of them do not anymore, and the primary two that do (South Korea and Japan) are working to get out from under that. NATO has shown itself more than capable of fielding a fighting force even without the US factored in, and the risk that NATO was meant to counter, that of the Russian-dominated Communist Bloc countries, is no longer a factor with many of those nations now a part of NATO.

This was a valid argument a decade ago. It isn't useful any longer.

RE: Which countries ?
By Amedean on 1/4/2012 1:05:13 PM , Rating: 2
Solandri is right, but the graph is just a graph. Healthcare and other entitlement programs are the monster hiding in the closet, but still I have no idea why Solandri's commen was rated so poorly.

RE: Which countries ?
By Solandri on 1/4/2012 4:25:30 PM , Rating: 2
I do know why it was rated poorly. I usually don't outright state it, but considering it got rated down to -1, I think I will this time:

There's a large segment of the U.S. population which is still stuck in the 1960s mindset. The U.S. military budget was too big back then. But it's since been scaled back drastically as a percentage of the economy (to about half what it was back then).

These people believe that, like in the 1960s, military spending is still the main cause of our budget woes, despite every CBO report for over a decade saying otherwise. If I post graphs or figures refuting it, cognitive dissonance kicks in and they latch on to every little flaw they can find to try to explain why the graph is wrong and their presupposed assumption is right.

"The graph only goes to 2001!" Well google up some graphs which go to 2010, I picked that one because it's from the site, and unfortunately they haven't updated it since 2001. has some nice graphs, but it's a conservative site, so they do put a spin on things, and anything from it is met with skepticism from the left even if it's just graphing data from government sites. "It's a percentage of GDP!" Well how else are you going to measure budget items taking into account inflation, the country's growing population, and expanding economy? "The units are 13 year intervals!" Look at the lines - they're one year intervals. It's just the labels which are 13 year intervals.

The biggest growth items in our budget (measured in raw dollars, percent, percent of budget, or percent of GDP) are entitlements (primarily Medicare/Medicaid) and interest on the debt. Those are what we need to address if we want to get the budget and debt under control. But as long as people are in denial and continue to think our problems are caused by military spending, our budget and debt are doomed to continue to grow.

Don't get me wrong. I've worked in the defense sector. I know there's tons of money being wasted there which could be cut. I'm not saying military spending should be shielded from further cuts. I'm saying the reality is, we could eliminate military spending entirely - cut it down to zero dollars - and the budget would still not be balanced and would still be growing out of control. Because the problem is not military spending.

If you read all this and still disagree with me, then don't take my word for it. Go read the CBO reports. Defense spending warrants two sentences. Almost the entirety of the 90 page report outlines growth in Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security as what we need to address to rein in budget growth.

RE: Which countries ?
By MrBlastman on 1/4/2012 1:12:43 PM , Rating: 2
It doesn't matter how big other countries sticks are. Do you think we should really care? Do you think it should make a difference on what we do?


We are America and as such we should be proud of who we are. If people don't like it, too bad--nobody is forcing them to live there. If we feel we need more of one thing or another, that's our business, not others. If others are upset about it, it is up to them to decide if it is worth spending their own money on it.

America is not the World's country, America is an American's country.

I'd also say that chart is pretty accurate from everything else that I have read.

RE: Which countries ?
By rlandess on 1/4/2012 12:12:32 AM , Rating: 3
Seriously, if that graph is passable for evidence of anything in public discourse then it's time for intelligent people to either beat a dumb person into submission or stab themselves in the neck to avoid the misery of the coming era.

That is the worst graph I've ever seen. The time units are 13 year intervals. The other axis is %GDP... Why is it not GDP with the chart stacking the data points to show %GDP AND total GDP. Then the graph would allow you to make a comparison of dollars spent among the 4 labeled datapoints (which doesn't include current data.)

We still spend more on defense than all of our enemies combined probably. So what does it matter if our defense budget is slipping as a function of GDP? If our GDP doubled next year for some reason should we double defense spending? I'd say not without the eminent threat of attack by a technologically superior adversary. At this point there are none and there's nothing in the foreseeable future that we and our allies cannot deal with at 1998 levels of spending.

Also... Dollar for dollar spent two countries won't get the same value out of their military. For instance in theory our new technology is built on lessons learned from previous technology so in theory it should be cheaper to get to the next level of superiority than say... Botswana. But then again if you're China then you were already building parts for the US and with a little stolen technology and flippantness towards patent law you can have a passable modern fighter jet in a hurry... and at pennies on the dollar.

RE: Which countries ?
By Reclaimer77 on 1/4/2012 10:18:54 AM , Rating: 3
How can you blatantly dismiss Iran's attempt to conquer Israel in open warfare and then say "what have they ever done??" And don't give me that crap about shadow government's and superpowers being behind Iran's actions. Iran is responsible.

That's like saying well aside from WWI and WWII, Germany has always been a peace loving international neighbor.

The author is dead on. Maybe you should look up the word "history", you idiot.

RE: Which countries ?
By Paj on 1/5/12, Rating: 0
RE: Which countries ?
By KoS on 1/5/2012 11:07:50 AM , Rating: 2
Democractically elected like Chavez? Or like all those leaders in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea? As examples!

Hell, Saddam held elections before the second gulf war...and won that election.

RE: Which countries ?
By Skywalker123 on 1/5/2012 5:04:19 PM , Rating: 2
Another idiotic post from the King of Idiots. How has Iran attempted to conquer Israel? Israel has an estimated 200 nukes as well as a better conventional military. Iran is not as stupid as you are.

RE: Which countries ?
By jfelano on 1/4/2012 11:08:25 AM , Rating: 3
They said threats...not attacks...learn to read bud.

Iran is so tough it craps Chuck Norris.
By arazok on 1/3/2012 11:38:01 AM , Rating: 5
The media likes to play these things up. I saw another article describing this as a 'Radar-evading battleship destroyer'. I love reading about how Iran could shut down oil transportation through the Strait and how Oil would hit $300 a barrel.

I'm pretty sure that as long as America has at least one aircraft carier within striking distance of Iran, Iran would be lucky to have enough time to even launch one of these things, let alone actually hit an American warship. It would be another face stomping by the American war machine.

Give these clowns a dozen nukes and I'd be surprised if they could even use them to any effect in a war. Ignore the media. This country will never be achieve any of it's regional dominance objectives because its nothing but a third-world chest thumper.

By Skywalker123 on 1/3/2012 4:24:08 PM , Rating: 2
Iran doesn't have to shut down the strait. Lay some mines and fire a few missiles and shipping insurance rates would skyrocket, causing oil to do the same.

Well This...
By mmatis on 1/3/2012 4:05:36 PM , Rating: 2
might give them something else to think about:

If Panetta doesn't kill it.

RE: Well This...
By Nehanarac on 1/3/2012 6:12:07 PM , Rating: 2
pretty cool video. must be some serious shocks on those wheels...

RE: Well This...
By mmatis on 1/3/2012 6:39:15 PM , Rating: 2
It's a "Navy" aircraft. You can tell them from the USAF birds if they're the same model and sitting on the ramp next to each other by looking for which one is dripping red. That would be hydraulic fluid from the struts. Navy pilots are taught to land "firmly" on the carrier deck. "Flare" is not one of their preferred landing methods. For good reason, of course. Overshooting the arrestor cables does not bode well when you're landing on a ship. As a result, the landing gear struts take somewhat of a beating.

Now THAT'S entertainment!
By Dorkyman on 1/3/2012 12:49:57 PM , Rating: 2
I am glad Mousavi has come into the limelight. The insane rants of Baghdad Bob always brought a smile to my face, but then he was gone. Now we have new entertainment, which we certainly need in these dreary times.

They are just looking for an arse woopin
By Beenthere on 1/3/12, Rating: -1
By Mitch101 on 1/3/2012 11:28:45 AM , Rating: 2
Im all for countries that show off and tell the world where they are as a Military power. Then showing them our 50 year old technology beats them as we dispose of our aging surplus on them when they get seriously out of line.

RE: They are just looking for an arse woopin
By AntiM on 1/3/12, Rating: 0
By cruisin3style on 1/3/2012 2:40:02 PM , Rating: 2
The US has military ... bases in over 130 countries.

Don't be hatin'

RE: They are just looking for an arse woopin
By FITCamaro on 1/3/2012 2:49:17 PM , Rating: 4
Ask Saudi Arabia, Japan, and South Korea how they'd feel about the US pulling its military out.

The reaction would be negative. Germany and Italy are for a reason as well.

Our troops are hardly "occupying" any of those countries.

RE: They are just looking for an arse woopin
By Skywalker123 on 1/3/2012 4:29:08 PM , Rating: 2
Cause Saudia Arabia rulers are such nice people. Why are German and Italian bases necessary?

RE: They are just looking for an arse woopin
By JediJeb on 1/3/2012 6:07:53 PM , Rating: 2
Why are German and Italian bases necessary?

Two reasons I can think of. One they lost a war where they attempted to take over the world, and two they and other have feared expansion of the Soviet Union. Threats from Russia are still there though less than what they used to be, and I guess there are still some hard feelings left over from the first.

By Solandri on 1/3/2012 6:46:33 PM , Rating: 2
Germany and Italy are both NATO members. So are the UK and Spain. During the Cold War, Germany was literally at the front line, bordering East Germany, so a NATO base there was a given. Bases are in Italy and the UK for similar reason. Whereas Germany was the front line, Italy was shielded by the Alps, and the UK by the Channel. This made them more defensible positions and thus good choices for secondary bases. Spain is at the Western end of Europe, so geographically represented the location of any "last stand" on continental Europe against a Soviet advance.

The bases are there with the assent of the host countries. France for example withdrew from the military arm of NATO and requested all foreign troops depart by 1967. That's when the U.S. closed its bases in France and left. If Germany, Italy, Spain, or the UK wanted U.S. troops out, all they'd have to do is ask. The U.S. would probably try to sweeten the pot to remain, like they offered Turkey a couple billion to be able to use the base there during the Iraq war. But the decision is ultimately up to the host country (Turkey declined).

By mmatis on 1/3/2012 8:39:40 PM , Rating: 2
By Paj on 1/5/2012 7:43:53 AM , Rating: 1
Ask Iran how they feel about having their democratically elected government overthrown.

Oh, wait.

RE: They are just looking for an arse woopin
By Skywalker123 on 1/3/12, Rating: 0
RE: They are just looking for an arse woopin
By JediJeb on 1/3/2012 6:27:13 PM , Rating: 2
I would be all for the US bringing home every deployed serviceman from around the world, as long as no other country followed them right up to our borders.

Anyone who thinks that Iran or any other Islamic Theocracy does not have ambitions of ridding the entire world of the infidels who are nothing more than servants of Satan(read any person who is not of the Islamic faith)then they are dreaming of an ideal world that never has or never will exist. There are many many peaceful followers of the Islamic faith, but just as with most societies in existence right now, most of those in power have global ambitions far beyond the average citizen of their government and they are always plotting ways to leverage any advantage possible to expand their influence. The only thing holding back countries like the US and most of western Europe is they are still constrained by democratic rules where the majority of the citizens must support what they do. The biggest problem is most all governments, including the democratic ones, are slowly working to take the power out of the peoples hands and place it into the hands of the elites, and they are doing it very slowly so they can avoid a revolt of the people. If we are not careful we will either lose our countries to powers within, or to invaders from without.

As for worrying about countries like Iran, I would not bet against them following our armies right up to our borders if we ever bring them all home. It is a sad reality that even if a country is peaceful at heart they must always be strong militarily to maintain their sovereignty.

RE: They are just looking for an arse woopin
By Skywalker123 on 1/4/2012 4:06:59 AM , Rating: 2
How are the Iranians going to "follow us up to our borders? they have neither the will nor the means. Are they going to station troops in Mexico? C'mon, get real.

By ekv on 1/4/2012 5:31:16 AM , Rating: 2
I would like to point out All-American Muslim, but I doubt you'd understand or appreciate that a terrorist-sponsoring nation will merely stop at a border. [I'm so unbelievable too ...]

Instead, wasn't it Obama that said about Iran "Let me be clear, they have neither the will nor the means" to build a nuclear weapon? After all, Islam means peace, no?

RE: They are just looking for an arse woopin
By FITCamaro on 1/4/2012 9:30:05 AM , Rating: 2
Actually its been shown that Islamic terrorists are sneaking across both our northern and southern borders.

RE: They are just looking for an arse woopin
By Skywalker123 on 1/5/2012 5:09:55 PM , Rating: 1
LMAO, Hundreds have been sneaking across the borders for years? so where are the attacks all these "terrorists" are making? I call bullshit.

RE: They are just looking for an arse woopin
By JediJeb on 1/4/2012 10:28:06 AM , Rating: 2
How are the Iranians going to "follow us up to our borders? they have neither the will nor the means. Are they going to station troops in Mexico? C'mon, get real.

That is a figure of speech, but if you want to take it literally then think of it this way. With less deterrent measures from countries like the US, what will stop them from slowly taking over the countries right up to our borders?

There are so many ways they can without having a battalion of troops standing side by side along or border. Let Iran build a nuclear weapon and they would not need a bomber or ICBM to deliver it to the US, they could more easily smuggle it into Mexico then across the US border just as easily as a drug cartel smuggles drugs across.

Even Russia has trouble with Islamic groups in their outer regions. If a country that exerts as much control as Russia does over its population has trouble with such things, how are we going to avoid it with our more or less open border policies?

By Skywalker123 on 1/5/2012 5:06:48 PM , Rating: 2
and what purpose would that serve?

"Well, we didn't have anyone in line that got shot waiting for our system." -- Nintendo of America Vice President Perrin Kaplan
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