Hormuz Strait Choke Point Opportunity
BackgroundStrait of Hormuz Collision Hazard to U.S. Submarines (color emphasis added)
Due to accidents, the number of submarines in the force able to report as fully prepared is steadily dropping in number. This marks the third nuclear attack submarine put out of action due to damage in an accident; USS Miami (SSN 755), USS Montpelier (SSN 765), and now USS Jacksonville (SSN 699); all in the last 10 months. Submarine Collision in the Arabian Gulf, Jan 11, 2013, GalrahnThere have also been three prior collisions of US subs in the Arab Gulf since 2004:
5 SEP 2005 - USS Philadelphia traveling on surface in the Gulf collides with M/V Yaso Aysen
8 JAN 2007 - USS Newport News transiting submerged in the Straits of Hormuz collides with Mogamigawa.
20 MAR 2009 - USS Hartford at periscope depth collided with USS New Orleans in the Strait of Hormuz
Strategic choke point: At least 2 million barrels of oil products is shipped daily through the narrow strait separating Oman. 07/16/12 - Iran restarts threats over closing Strait of Hormuz
Any effort by Iran to mine the choke point or key ports and routes would be detected and staunched before completion could be successful. Alternatively, with permission from the Sultanate of Oman, a long-standing military and political ally of the U.S., Navy SeaBees (Construction Battalion or 'CB' ) might just cut a short canal (below) across narrow spots in the Musandam peninsula. How long to dynamite and dredge? A matter of weeks.
Submarines are always silent and strange.