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Bullets, Beans


Saturday, 31 December 2011

Iranian missile spin closes Hormuz for five hours

By a media trick, Tehran proved its claim that closing the Strait of Hormuz is as "easy as drinking water," debkafile reports. First thing Saturday morning, Saturday, Dec. 31, Iran's state agencies "reported" long-range and other missiles had been test-fired as part of its ongoing naval drill around the Strait of Hormuz. Ahead of the test, Tehran closed its territorial waters. For five hours Saturday, not a single warship, merchant vessel or oil tanker ventured into the 30-mile wide Hormuz strait, waiting to hear from Tehran' that the test was over.

Instead, around 0900 local time, a senior Iranian navy commander Mahmoud Moussavi informed Iran's English language Press TV that no missiles had been fired after all. "The exercise of launching missiles will be carried out in the coming days," he said.
For five hours therefore, world shipping obeyed Tehran's warning and gave the narrow waterway through which one-fifth of the world's oil passes, a wide berth. They stayed out of range of a test which, debkafile's military sources report, aimed to demonstrate for the first time that Shahab-3 ballistic missiles which have a range of 1,600 kilometers and other missiles, such as the Nasr1cruise marine missile, are capable of reaching Hormuz from central Iran.

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