US Threatens Ships in Persian Gulf, Tells Them to Stay Clear

Navy says any ships in 100 meters will be 'interpreted as a threat'

With the US riled up at Iran and looking to telegraph another incident, the Navy has issued a statement warning all ships in the Persian Gulf to “stay clear” of US warships, warning any ships within 100 meters of an American will be “interpreted as a threat” and that the US would react in “self-defense,” which is to say attack them.

This comes after President Trump’s recent threat to fire on any Iranian ships that “harass” the US, and seems to be mostly aimed at civilian cargo ships, since Iran’s navy never gets that close to US ships outside of Iranian waters.

Coming amid US anger at Iran for shipping gasoline to Venezuela, and US anger at Iran just in general, this may be meant to just frame an upcoming US attack on an Iranian ship by providing an advance justification for doing so.

Iran’s Revolutionary Guards have threatened to destroy US ships if they become a threat to Gulf maritime security. This is just the latest in a long line of flashpoints between the two sides in recent months.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of