In a spiralling development between already tense relations between the United States and Iran, the Revolutionary Guards chief has warned Washington of “decisive response” from Tehran. After US President Donald Trump said on April 22 that he has instructed American troops to “shoot down” Iranian boats that cause trouble for the US ships deployed in the gulf, Major General Hossein Salami told state television that Iran’s response would be “quick and efficient”.
Salami reportedly also said that the Iranian forces have also received the orders to target the American troops “if they try to endanger the safety” of former’s “war boats”. Trump took to Twitter to warn Tehran after Iran’s Revolutionary Guards said they had launched their first military satellite of the country. The US President had said that “if they (Iran) harass” US ships, the American troops are ordered to destroy them.
I have instructed the United States Navy to shoot down and destroy any and all Iranian gunboats if they harass our ships at sea.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 22, 2020
The recent escalation between US-Iran relations came as US Naval Forces Central Command said on April 15 that “Iranian gunboats” repeatedly crossed the bows and sterns of the American vessels at extremely close range and high speeds. The US Navy said that its crew members had issued several warnings through bridge radio, including five short blasts from the ships' horns and long-range acoustic noisemaker devices. However, reportedly, the US did not receive any response from the Iranian Navy.
On the contrary, the Iranian Revolutionary Guard’s commander claimed that the incident that took place last week was the outcome of “unprofessional and dangerous behaviour by the Americans in the Persian Gulf”. Salami also reportedly added that it was an “operational turmoil” and blamed it on the “disorder” among the US troops at the sensitive area. According to the Revolutionary Guard’s chief, the incident at the Gulf showcased that “command and control” of America’s military units “may have been weakened” amid the deadly coronavirus outbreak.
In another befitting reply that US received after Trump’s threats, Iranian military said that Washington should focus on “saving” their own troops. While talking to an international news agency, the spokesperson of Iran’s armed forces, Brigadier General Abolfazl Shekarchi, said that instead of “intimidating others”, US should enhance their capability to protect American troops.