US Official Claims Iranian Missiles Spotted on Boats in Iranian Waters

US uncomfortable with Iran having missiles on 'traditional boats'

Continuing to try to talk up the threat posed by Iran, a US official was quoted by the press as saying that aerial surveillance photographs showed Iranian missiles loaded on small boats off the coast of Iran, which the US deemed a cause of concern.

The details of the allegation aren’t terribly specific, but the anonymous US official presented the missiles as being on “traditional boats,” and later suggested they’d be the sort of civilian boats the US wouldn’t normally worry about.

This whole missile narrative began over a week ago, with US officials accusing Iran initially of using the boats to smuggle the missiles. Now, the claim is that the missiles are fully assembled and just on the boats.

This all fits neatly into the US narrative that Iran is about to attack some US target, potentially some US boats. That the immediate US response was to send  number of additional boats into this same vicinity, seemingly just giving them more targets to choose from, apparently didn’t trouble any policy-makers.

Perhaps more importantly, it’s not clear Iran is doing anything wrong here. The US may perceive the boats as a threat, but indications are that the boats have not left Iranian waters, and just served as an excuse for the US to react and start a regional buildup to war.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of