Get Task & Purpose in your inbox
US Destroys Radar Sites In Yemen After Attack On Navy Ship
A U.S. Navy destroyer launched a salvo of Tomahawk cruise missiles early Thursday at three coastal radar sites along the western coast of Yemen, in what officials said was retaliation for the missiles launched this week toward a U.S. military ship in the Red Sea.
The Pentagon said the predawn offensive, launched from the U.S. destroyer Nitze, was aimed at installations in an area controlled by Houthi rebels. Initial assessments show the sites were destroyed, according to U.S. officials.
"These limited self-defense strikes were conducted to protect our personnel, our ships, and our freedom of navigation in this important maritime passageway," Pentagon spokesman Peter Cook said in a statement late Wednesday.
"The United States will respond to any further threat to our ships and commercial traffic, as appropriate, and will continue to maintain our freedom of navigation in the Red Sea, the Bab al-Mandeb, and elsewhere around the world."
The strikes, authorized by President Obama, pull the U.S. directly into a war in Yemen that's gone on for more than a year. They came just hours after the Pentagon said the U.S. guided-missile destroyer Mason was targeted by missiles fired from Hudaydah, a rebel-controlled area in western Yemen.
The ship was not hit and no one aboard was injured, but it was the third such missile launch against the Mason in the last four days.
The destroyer was operating in international waters near the Bab al-Mandeb strait, a narrow waterway between Yemen and the Horn of Africa, where millions of barrels of oil pass through daily on ships bound for Europe, Asia and the U.S.
U.S. officials said the Houthis had seized the coastal radar facilities at Ras Isa, Mukha and Khoka and used them to track and target vessels at sea with anti-ship missiles.
"These radars were active during previous attacks and attempted attacks on ships in the Red Sea," said one U.S. official, who could not be identified discussing intelligence or ongoing operations. "The three radar sites were in remote areas, where there was little risk of civilian casualties or collateral damage."
The Mason had been targeted by two missiles, believed to be variants of the Chinese-made Silkworm, on Sunday. It was targeted again with another missile on Wednesday. The ship took counter-measures, including firing interceptor missiles to defend itself, but did not fire on the rebels on land, U.S. officials said.
On Oct. 1, a missile fired from the coast of Yemen hit a high-speed HSV-2 Swift catamaran operated by the United Arab Emirates, severely damaging it. A YouTube video showed the vessel engulfed in flames.
The Houthis, a Shiite Muslim group backed by Iranian money and weapons, claimed the attack on the Swift, but not those on the Mason.
The Houthis have been locked in a war with a Saudi-led coalition since last spring when they forced Yemen’s U.S.-backed president into exile and quickly swept across the Arab world's poorest nation.
The Obama administration is providing intelligence, munitions and midair refueling to coalition aircraft, but has so far avoided direct involvement in the conflict, which has claimed the lives of thousands of civilians.
The White House issued a statement over the weekend that it was reviewing its participation in the war after reports that Saudi aircraft bombed a funeral, an attack that killed or wounded hundreds of people.
© 2016 the Los Angeles Times. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.
A U.S.S. Manchester, CL-83, hat firmly tucked on his head, John Ronney, pierced the collar of his granddaughter, Jennifer Rooney's new rank during a special pinning ceremony at Naval Medical Center Camp Lejeune on Sept. 25.
By Rooney's side was his son and Jennifer's father Robert, a Navy veteran. Together, three Navy veterans brought together for military tradition.
"They are the two people who taught me everything I needed to know about the Navy," said Jennifer.
CAMP PENDLETON — The military prosecution of a Coast Guardsman accused of murder began Wednesday with a preliminary hearing at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton.
Seaman Ethan W. Tucker, 21, was arrested August 28 after a seven-month Coast Guard investigation into the January death of Seaman Ethan Kelch, 19, who served on the same ship as Tucker— the Kodiak, Alaska-based high endurance cutter Douglas Munro.
ANKARA (Reuters) - President Tayyip Erdogan said on Saturday Turkey would press on with its offensive into northeastern Syria and "crush the heads of terrorists" if a deal with Washington on the withdrawal of Kurdish fighters from the area were not fully implemented.
Erdogan agreed on Thursday in talks with U.S. Vice President Mike Pence a five-day pause in the offensive to allow time for the Kurdish fighters to withdraw from a "safe zone" Turkey aims to establish in northeast Syria near the Turkish border.
President Trump stoked confusion Friday by declaring the U.S. has "secured the Oil" in the Middle East amid continued fallout from the Turkish invasion of northern Syria that he enabled by pulling American troops out of the region.
It wasn't immediately clear what the president was talking about, as there were no publicly known developments in Syria or elsewhere in the Middle East relating to oil. White House aides did not return requests for comment.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A U.S. State Department investigation of Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server while she was secretary of state has found no evidence of deliberate mishandling of classified information by department employees.
The investigation, the results of which were released on Friday by Republican U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley's office, centered on whether Clinton, who served as the top U.S. diplomat from 2009 to 2013, jeopardized classified information by using a private email server rather than a government one.