Pentagon Still Not Sure About Claim Ship Attacked Off Yemen Coast

Spokesman Insists Retaliatory Strikes Still 'Appropriate'

Reports on Saturday night that the USS Mason came under attack for the third time in less than a week off the coast of Yemen were quietly rolled back by the Pentagon, who have since noted they aren’t really sure about that, and reiterated today that they are still “assessing” the claim.

Reports following the “attack” and the warship’s “retaliation” indicated that the Pentagon believed there was a strong possibility that no missiles were fired at the ship at all, and the detection of the missiles was the result of a radar malfunction.

Despite it then following that there is a very real possibility that the Pentagon “retaliated” against a totally imagined attack, spokesman Peter Cook indicated that the retaliation amounted to an appropriate response to the situation. The US has repeatedly attacked Houthi targets along the Yemeni coast over this incident.

It is unclear what the Pentagon is actually doing to “assess” whether the missiles fired at the USS Mason were real or not, but it appears the ship is being left parked off the Yemeni coast, despite initially being presented as just passing through into the Red Sea.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.