The British Plotted To Trap Iran in Tanker Scam and Drive Trump to War
July 14, 2019 (EIRNS)—It is becoming abundantly clear that the British claim that Iran attempted to seize or divert a British tanker in the Strait of Hormuz on July 10 was a totally British-orchestrated scam from the outset, in keeping with disgraced Ambassador Sir Kim Darroch’s suggestion that a military confrontation was required to overcome President Donald Trump’s refusal to go to war with Iran.
First, of course, the British special forces seized an Iranian tanker Grace 1 off Gibraltar on July 4, an open act of piracy. They then diverted the British oil tanker, British Heritage, which was in the Persian Gulf, originally heading for Basra to load up with oil, to Saudi Arabia, without any oil. Then, on July 10, they sent the ship through the Strait of Hormuz, still without any oil. Why would an oil tanker leave the Gulf without oil, one may ask? Also, they deployed their only military ship in the Gulf, the HMS Montrose, to accompany the British Heritage. Note that the Financial Times has reported that there are between 15 and 30 British tankers in the Gulf at any one time. Why was the empty British Heritage chosen to be escorted?
CNN reported on July 11: “On July 10, the ship [British Heritage] turned off its transponders for almost 24 hours,” travelling through the night through the Straits without their transponders (AIS signal). The Moon on Alabama website reports these developments, noting that traveling with the AIS signal turned off is extremely dangerous in the crowded Strait, but that the ship would “still be visible on the Iranian surveillance radars that control the Hormuz Strait,” which would certainly draw Iran’s suspicion.
With such bait, did the British intend to draw Iran into a military event? The U.K. Ministry of Defense claimed that “three Iranian vessels attempted to impede the passage of a commercial vessel, the British Heritage, through the Strait of Hormuz. HMS Montrose was forced to position herself between the Iranian vessels and British Heritage and issue verbal warnings to the Iranian vessels, which then turned away.”
Iran reports that there was no such confrontation. At least it is clear that Iran did not fall for any trap, which perhaps explains why Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt is offering to release the Iranian tanker Grace 1 seized off Gibraltar.