Time to Confront

Iran is testing us. So far, we’re failing. And if anyone is any doubt as to just how far the Iranians are prepared to go, this latest act, arguably an act of war, should leave none of us in any doubt.

Iran releases hostage marine's 'anti-war' letter

Iran has piled the pressure on Tony Blair using hostage Faye Turney in a cynical new propaganda stunt.
Except Blair is going to do sweet FA other than deliver sternly-worded objections. Pathetic.

Now for Iran’s agenda:

Addressed to "representative of the House of Commons", the one-page letter reads: "Isn't it time for us to start withdrawing our forces from Iraq and let them determine their own future." It is signed 'Faye Turney' and dated March 27, three days ago.

It concedes the key issue in the present crisis - that she and her fellow hostages were in Iranian waters when they were seized, which Britain strongly denies - and stresses her captors "have looked after me well".

The diplomatic crisis over the 25-year-old mother, who has a girl aged three, intensified when was paraded on state TV on Wednesday night.

And it deepened further when Iran made an abrupt U-turn over promises for her release. Tehran had said she would be freed after "confessing" that her Navy boarding party had "trespassed" in Iranian waters. But it back-tracked on the pledge.
A lie, of course, delivered to extract a ‘confession’. Pathetic.

Hardline Iranian negotiator Ali Larijani accused the British Government of "arrogance" and warned it to end its "fuss" and "media campaign".
I do most humbly beg your pardon, you jumped up little prick, but who precisely kidnapped these sailors and marines in Iraqi waters, and then paraded them on Iranian Festering Islamonut TV?

Larijani, the secretary of Iran's supreme national security council, said: "They have created a ballyhoo over diplomatic ties and raised the issue with the UN. This will not help solve the issue."
The issue? The issue is that the Iranian government, if it can be called that, is infested by hard line maniacs who have yet to be confronted in the way they should be.

Britain suffered a setback at the UN last night when the Security Council refused to support a motion "deploring" Iran's actions and demanding the immediate release of the 15. After three hours of talks, ambassadors from the 15 council nations were working on a watered-down statement.

Nations including Russia, China, Indonesia and Qatar are believed to have argued they have no way of verifying exactly where the incident took place.
Fine. The usual back-stabbing dross from the tossunits at the UN. Did we expect more?

Amid criticism of Britain's low-key response to the crisis, America's former ambassador to the UN John Bolton said the 'softly softly' approach Britain had adopted over Iran's nuclear programme had emboldened the Iranians to the point where they could say: "We can do something as outrageous as seize 15 of their citizens and they won't do anything in response."

Tehran raised the stakes by not only denying British diplomats access to the captives but also threatening to put them on trial.

In the Iranian capital, protestors accused Mrs Turney and her comrades of spying and called for their execution.
As usual, Bolton is absolutely right. That the British ship concerned didn’t throw everything it had into getting these personnel returned while they still could is the real shame, though. The gab-fest that has followed has made things even worse.

A Ministry of Defence inquiry is now under way into the capture in broad daylight of the 15 sailors and Marines amid mounting criticism of the Royal Navy's 'softly-softly' approach.
That the Royal Navy has descended to this - letting crewmen be kidnapped, in broad daylight, right under their noses - is the truly pathetic display here.

Rest assured, though. Given the limp-wristed pantomime that's been performed so far, Iran will most certainly do this again. Why not?

Update: in comments at the BBC’s Your Say site:

I feel no compassion for the British sailors. They are transgressors and deserve to be punished. I am completely sure that the British sailors are safe and have not been subject to any torture. In my opinion Iran has detained them in a move to secure the release of the Iranian diplomats [Iranian diplomats? Are you f’ing kidding me?] (held by the Americans in Iraq).
Mehrdad, Sydney
What is this little prick doing here? Anyone? Anyone at all? F'ing bring on the quarantine - now!

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