Playing defense against Islamic terrorists doesn’t work. The terrorists, at least initially, don’t need to win, they just need to take your society hostage and force you to constantly be on the defensive. Parts of your economy get shut down and you’re always on alert.
The Houthi Jihadists in Yemen, backed by Iran, have taken a crucial waterway hostage. Biden responded by playing defense, responding to Houthi attacks on shipping but without making a concerted effort to take out the terrorist infrastructure.
And so here we are.
Biden’s Red Sea Coalition responds defensively to attacks on shipping.
U.S. Navy helicopters returned fire and sank three small boats carrying Houthi militants in the Red Sea on Sunday, after U.S. warships responded to a distress call from a merchant vessel, military officials said.
A Maersk container ship, the Singapore-flagged Hangzhou, issued a distress call at about 6:30 a.m. local time, U.S. Central Command said in a statement on Sunday. The merchant vessel said four small boats were attacking it.
“The small boats, originating from Houthi-controlled areas in Yemen, fired crew-served and small-arms weapons at the Maersk Hangzhou, getting to within 20 meters of the vessel, and attempted to board the vessel,” Central Command said.
Helicopters from two U.S. ships — the USS Eisenhower and the USS Gravely — responded and issued verbal calls to the small boats, U.S. officials said.
While the helicopters were “in the process of issuing verbal calls to the small boats, the small boats fired upon the U.S. helicopters with crew served weapons and small arms,” Central Command said.
Service members aboard the Navy helicopters returned fire and sank three of the four small boats, killing the crews, U.S. officials said. The fourth boat fled the area.
Read between the lines here. US Naval personnel were only allowed to fire on the Houthis when fired on.
They did not have authorization to fire when the Houthis were firing on the Maersk Hangzhou or on what were clearly enemy vessels, but only defensively in response to attacks on the US Navy.
Is it any wonder that Maersk is calling it a day?
Shipping and logistics behemoth A.P. Moller-Maersk said Tuesday that it’s suspending its shipping operations through the Red Sea until further notice as it investigates an attack on one of its ships by Iran-backed Houthi rebels this past weekend.
Biden has demonstrated that he’ll only react defensively to clear attacks. That’s not going to secure the Red Sea for shipping.
So Biden has handed the Houthis a victory. They don’t need to actually seize ships, they just need to demonstrate that the area is unsafe for vessels (unless they covertly pay protection money to the terrorists) and that America isn’t going to make the threat go away any time soon.
This is how we lose and the terrorists win.