Can you say “Praying Mantis II”?

U.S. says Iranian gunboats harassed warships

Iranian Revolutionary Guard gunboats harassed three U.S. Navy warships in the Strait of Hormuz Sunday, in what the U.S. military considers a “significant provocative act.”

Military officials told NBC News that two U.S. Navy destroyers and one frigate were heading into the Persian Gulf through the international waters of the Strait of Hormuz when five armed “fast boats” of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard approached a high speed, darting in and out of the formation.

At one point a radio message from one of the Iranian boats warned, “You are going to blow up within minutes.”

They should know that the big rage these days is sequels.

History lesson:

iranian frigate is sahand burning duing operation praying mantis

The Iranian frigate IS SAHAND (74) burns after being attacked by aircraft of Carrier Air Wing II from the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier USS ENTERPRISE (CVN-65) in retaliation for the mining of the guided missile frigate USS SAMUEL B. ROBERTS (FFG-58). The ship was hit by three Harpoon missiles plus cluster bombs. Date Shot: 19 Apr 1988

Plus, just reminiscing about the old days, we’ve got a Flying Drumstick in action:

A-6 Intruder dropping CBU-59 cluster bombs duing Operation Praying Mantis


A-6 Intruder dropping CBU-59 cluster bombs duing Operation Praying Mantis

An air to air left side view of an A-6E Intruder aircraft dropping CBU-59 cluster bombs over Iranian targets in retaliation for the mining of the guided missile frigate USS SAMUEL B. ROBERTS (FFG 58). Date Shot: 18 Apr 1988

Plus, just because it’s fun:

Burning Iranian oil platforn during the Tanker War

An Iranian command and control platform is set afire after being shelled by four US Navy destroyers. The shelling is a response to a recent Iranian missile attack on a reflagged Kuwaiti super tanker. Camera Operator: PH3 HENRY CLEVELAND Date Shot: 19 Oct 1987

That’s a real nice oil platform you have, there. Be a shame if anything wuz to happen to it or anything.


  1. MO, The IRGC is writing some pretty big checks with this sh*t, checks that the regular Iranian armed forces are going to have to cover. It’s encouraging though that the Iranian gubmint is downplaying it, publicly stating it’s a non-event…I hope someone in the IRGC command structure is getting an ass-chewing. And yes, those were the good old days; how many BBs were still in service then, ’87-ish? I’m asking because I know you know off the top of your head.

  2. Well, I had to check the date that Wisconsin was recommissioned. The answer is three, because the Wisconsin was recommissioned in Oct 1988. Iowa and Missouri spent time in the Gulf at the time, though.

  3. If I was the flotilla commander, all I would’ve said to the ‘recreational boaters’ was, ‘Adults do it, kids talk about it………..good to know what group you’re in.’ LOL!

  4. The last photo was Nimble Archer in Oct 87. There were two platforms. That platform burned for a year. Lit up the sky for miles around. The SEALs used a little too much explosives. The other was destroyed without a fire with 1005 rounds of 5′. During Preying Mantis we sunk one FFG (22 bombs), one PTG (5 SM-1 and 5′), three PBs (5′), damaged one F4 (SM-1), Two platforms (60%/80% destroyed using 5′ and explosives). For eight hours if it was Iranian and underway, it was a target.

  5. Actually, the BBs only went to the top of the SoH and spent most of the time in the Gulf of Oman with the birdfarms. They were to be used for counter-battery fire for the silkworm sites if Iran shot at one of our convoys.