U.S. military considering armed personnel on commercial ships in Strait of Hormuz

Aug 7, 2023, 8:00 PM

FILE - The Pentagon is seen from Air Force One as it flies over Washington, March 2, 2022. The Pent...

FILE - The Pentagon is seen from Air Force One as it flies over Washington, March 2, 2022. The Pentagon is considering using armed military personnel on commercial ships out of the Strait of Hormuz. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File)

(AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File)

SALT LAKE CITY — The tension between Iran and the United States is already high. In an effort to minimize Iran’s harassing and seizing of private commercial tankships as they cross the Strait of Hormuz, The Washington Post reports the U.S. has said it may consider putting armed military personnel on this these ships.

Will this cause tensions to run even higher between the two nations? What could happen with marines on these ships? Are we getting closer to a direct conflict with Iran?

Dan Lamothe, a U.S. military reporter for The Washington Post, joins KSL NewsRadio to discuss the situation with Iran. 


He said the discussion to use armed military on commercial ships comes after a series of incidents in which the Iranian military has captured tankships.

“It’s not a done deal, but it’s very close,” he said. 

Lamothe also said the use of marines would come at the invitation of these countries and companies that are shipping out of the Strait of Hormuz.

Some unknowns still about securing the Strait of Hormuz

What is unclear, according to Lamothe, is the number of marines and what their rules of engagement would be. 

“But the idea is that you’re now at least creating a deterrent factor,” he said. “Is something that would maybe make the Iranian military think twice from taking over these vessels. And forcing them to go to the Port of Iran.”

KSL NewsRadio’s Boyd Matheson asked, “What kind of harassment are we continuing to see?”

Lamothe said Iran uses small speedboats in groups of up to 12 at a time.

“Which makes it very difficult for a vessel, larger and slower, to get away,” he said.

Lamothe said the marines that would be involved arrived in the region a few weeks ago, and are doing training in Bahrain. Furthermore, he said other military members, who could be involved arrived over the weekend by sea. 

Inside Sources with Boyd Matheson can be heard weekdays from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. on KSL NewsRadio. Users can find the show on the KSL NewsRadio website and app. 

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U.S. military considering armed personnel on commercial ships in Strait of Hormuz