A U.S. Navy patrol boat fired on an Iranian military ship Tuesday as it made an alarmingly fast and close approach in the Persian Gulf, marking the latest aggressive encounter between the two adversaries.
The unidentified Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps vessel got within 200 yards of the USS Thunderbolt before the American patrol boat fired a warning shot, quickly ending the encounter. A Pentagon official described it as an isolated incident and said one person was hurt.
It is not clear where in the Persian Gulf the incident occurred or how many Americans were aboard the Thunderbolt. The vessel, based in Norfolk, Virginia, can carry a crew of 27 and is used primarily to patrol coastlines and provide surveillance for interdiction operations.
U.S. officials also have not disclosed what type of weapons the crew fired. The ship is heavily armed, carrying chain guns, automatic grenade launchers and .50.-caliber machine guns.
At least three other U.S. vessels were nearby at the time.
(c) 2017, The Washington Post · Andrew Degrandpre