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    To Stop Iran’s Threat to Gulf Ships, Send the Marines

    To Stop Iran's Threat to Gulf Ships, Send the Marines

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    In a timely return to their roots, U.S. Marines are training in the Middle East and preparing to embark on civilian merchant ships to protect them from 's increasingly predatory behavior.

    These specialized Marine units, known as Fleet Anti-terrorism Security Teams, or FASTs, have been deployed in response to over 20 incidents of Iranian Revolutionary Guard maritime forces harassing, firing on, boarding and seizing legitimate merchant traffic in the Arabian Gulf over the past two years. On July 5, Iranian forces opened fire on two tankers in international waters before U.S. forces intervened.

    According to news reports, more than 100 Marines and sailors are training in , host to the U.S. 5th Fleet, which oversees all maritime operations throughout the Middle East. While the operation doesn't have final approval, it could roll out this month.

    What does this plan tell us about U.S. intentions in the region, and how will the Iranians likely respond?

    First, it is important to remember that the original role of marines going back centuries was to be a powerful fighting on sailing ships, often protecting convoys of commercial craft. For centuries, the British Royal Navy…

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