HolyCoast: Before the Brits the Iranians Tried the Aussies and Didn't Succeed
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Sunday, June 24, 2007

Before the Brits the Iranians Tried the Aussies and Didn't Succeed

We all remember the seizing of the British sailors and marines, and the seemingly little effort made by the British forces to defend themselves. Sometime before that the Iranians tried the same thing with some Australians, but had a very different outcome:

Iranian naval forces in the Gulf tried to capture an Australian Navy boarding team but were vigorously repelled, the BBC has learned.

The incident took place before Iran successfully seized 15 British sailors and Marines in March.

The lessons from the earlier attempt do not appear to have been applied in time by British maritime patrols.

The 15 Britons were searching a cargo boat in the Gulf when they were captured over a boundary dispute.

'Having none of it'

When Iranian Revolutionary Guards captured the British sailors and Royal Marines in March, it was not exactly their first attempt.

It turns out that Iranian forces made an earlier concerted attempt to seize a boarding party from the Royal Australian Navy.

The Australians, though, to quote one military source, "were having none of it".

The British personnel were eventually released

The BBC has been told the Australians re-boarded the vessel they had just searched, aimed their machine guns at the approaching Iranians and warned them to back off, using what was said to be "highly colourful language".

The Iranians withdrew, and the Australians were reportedly lifted off the ship by one of their own helicopters.

You'd have thought the Brits would have learned from that incident that a strong defense would scare the Iranians away.

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