Iranian-backed Houthi terrorists in Yemen fired two ballistic missiles at a U.S. destroyer in the Gulf of Aden just after midnight on Monday after the vessel thwarted an attempt by terrorists to seize a tanker connected to an Israeli businessman.
The Liberian-flagged Central Park chemical tanker — which is managed by Zodiac Maritime, a U.K. based firm that is part of Israeli billionaire Eyal Ofer’s Zodiac Group — was believed to have been seized earlier in the day.
However, the USS Mason and associated aircraft received a distress call from the vessel that the crew was under attack. Upon arrival, the destroyer demanded that the crew be released and the five terrorists who boarded the ship got back on their small boat and attempted to outrun U.S. forces but quickly failed.
“At approximately 0141 on Nov. 27 Sanaa time, two ballistic missiles were fired from Houthi controlled areas in Yemen toward the general location of the USS MASON (DDG 87) and M/V CENTRAL PARK,” U.S. Central Command said in a statement. “The USS MASON (DDG87), which is part of the Dwight D. Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group, was concluding its response to the M/V CENTRAL PARK distress call at the time of the missile launches. There was no damage or reported injuries from either vessel during this incident.”
The missiles did not reach the destroyer; it is not clear if they were shot down.
“Maritime domain security is essential to regional stability,” said Gen. Michael Erik Kurilla, USCENTCOM commander. “We will continue to work with allies and partners to ensure the safety and security of international shipping lanes.”
On Nov. 26, the USS MASON (DDG 87), with allied ships from our coalition counter-piracy task force (TF 151), and associated aircraft responded to a distress call from the M/V CENTRAL PARK, a commercial vessel, that they were under attack by an unknown entity. Upon arrival,… pic.twitter.com/ASmM3b0xrf
— U.S. Central Command (@CENTCOM) November 27, 2023
U.S. forces in the region have been attacked at least 66 times by various Iranian-backed terrorists since October 17, just 10 days after Hamas terrorists, who are also backed by Iran, launched an unprecedented terrorist attack against Israel.
Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) said on Sunday that the only way to stop the attacks would be to launch a “massive retaliation to make it clear we will not tolerate these attacks on Americans.”