The blasts and missile fire must have been heard even as far away as Geneva, where this week US and Iranian negotiators were trying to wrap up a nuclear deal. Scores of small naval speedboats descended in a swarm Wednesday, Feb. 25, on a huge “American target,” while missiles blasted it from the shore and ground-to-air rockets shot down fake US warplanes on a simulated bombing mission over Iran.
Iran deliberately chose to stage this crudely anti-American naval exercise in the vital Strait of Hormuz, through which one-sixth of the world’s oil product passes day by day. An earlier exercise took place in the same area in December.
“Wiping out the American Navy in the Persian Gulf in the space of a few hours,” was the object of the exercise as designated in a secret document drawn up at a special consultation of senior Revolutionary Guards officers ahead of the practice. debkafile’s intelligence sources obtained access to this document, which quoted Adm. Alli Fadavi, head of the Revolutionary Guards Navy as laying down the guidelines for the exercise.
A year ago, on March 23, debkafile first revealed that Iran was building a mock-up of a US carrier. Tehran claimed then it was designed for a movie.
Then, on April 27, 2014, our Iranian sources quoted Adm. Ali Fadavi as ordering Iranian forces to target a replica of the USS Nimitz aircraft carrier during their forthcoming war games. "We should learn about the weaknesses and strengths of our enemy" he said.
In 2015, Fadavi was still harping on the same theme.
In his view, America’s might in the world stemmed from its military strength, which depended largely on its navy. Therefore, he argued at the consultation for the current war games, that destroying the US Navy would be tantamount to defeating America as a military power and American imperialism, as well as inflicting a mortal blow to the US presence in the region.
An American aircraft carrier, he explained, encapsulates its naval, air and marine forces and has an escort of destroyers, frigates and supply ships. It is our mission, Fadavi said, to blow the entire US naval presence out of the Persian Gulf. “Either you vanquish the enemy, or he will destroy you. Our goal is to devastate the enemy on the waves of the Persian Gulf.”
Gen. Mohammad Nazerig, commander of the Iranian naval marine special forces, got down to tactics. The US aircraft carrier and its escort vessels must be blasted in a coordinated assault that also hits their supply ports in Bahrain, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, he said.
Another method would be to seize the carrier in a surprise attack, using Iran’s underwater Houth missiles in support of hundreds of Revolutionary Guards speedboats firing rockets. Iran would hold the advantage in this type of operation, said the Iranian general, because its missile boats can go up to a speed of 80 knots while the targeted American vessel can only move at 31 knots.
Acting IRGC Navy Commander Adm. Ali-Reza Tongsari envisaged a coordinated attack on the American carrier ending in its seizure and the unfurling of the Islamic Republic’s flag high over its decks. This would signify Islamic Iran’s victory over the strongest military force in the world and death to the reputation of the world’s only superpower.