British Royal Marines Heading to Gulf of Oman to Protect Warships

Officials say deployment was planned weeks before tanker attacks

According to reports out of the Sunday Times, Britain is set to deploy approximately 100 Royal Marines to the Gulf of Oman in the days to come, with an eye toward protecting British warships in the area.

Officials cited “concern” about mounting tensions with Iran, and noted that Iran had summoned the British Ambassador to protest Britain blaming them for last week’s tanker attacks.

Yet this deployment is, if officials are to be believed, unrelated to those attacks. Rather, they say the deployments had been planned for several weeks, as part of the general escalation toward Iran, and just happen to coincide with the tanker attacks.

Iran has denied attacking the tankers, though both the US and Britain have declared Iran the guilty party. So far, there has been no sign of any incidents in the region threatening anyone’s warships, and with the ongoing US escalation, there are a lot more warships in the region than there normally are.

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.