In early January, Iran seized two United States warships under not-quite-explained circumstances and held ten American sailors as common criminals before finally releasing them. I say Iran held them as common criminals because the United Nations Law of the Sea Treaty, to which Iran is a signatory, requires that distressed mariners be immediately freed (our sailors weren’t) and the Geneva Conventions prohibit transmitting the images of captured enemy prisoners (our sailors were herded before the media). Two American warships were displayed flying the Iranian ensign as though they were prizes of war.
John Kerry praised the Iranians but the Iranians aren’t done with humiliating the Great Satan, even the Great Satan that is helping them build nuclear weapons.
#Iran state TV publishes new pictures of #US sailors in which one sailor is crying after being detained. pic.twitter.com/Kl0WkN3QFG
— Abas Aslani (@abasinfo) February 10, 2016
What these images portray is a US sailor in tears over the shame of being taken prisoner without offering resistance. He is not at fault. No resistance was possible. Images of the capture show the two American ships were operating in contested waters without any weapons mounted. And as a former commissioned officer, my heart goes out to any fighting man placed in this untenable position.
These repeated messages aren’t aimed at an American audience. They are aimed at our allies in the Persian Gulf and Middle East who are scared sh**less over Obama’s actions and inactions. They drive home the point that Iran is THE force to be reckoned with and the United States is powerless. Sadly, who can say they are wrong.