Rethinking the Strait of Hormuz: A Recommended Course of Action that Establishes Operational Advantage
NAVAL WAR COLL NEWPORT RI JOINT MILITARY OPERATIONS DEPT
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The proliferation of modern anti-accessarea denial A2AD weapons has changed the severity of the threat in constricted waters such as the Strait of Hormuz SOH and the Arabian Gulf. This paper illustrates how Iran has combined these modern weapons with a hybrid form of warfare that presents a Coalition Naval Force CNF with a serious threat to contend with when operating in Irans littoral waters. The US Navy and its coalition partners must assess the nature of Irans A2AD network when considering which Course of Action COA will allow them to fight, win and survive a conflict with Iran. This paper recommends a COA that will allow a CNF to achieve desired objectives by leveraging the advantages of operating in the North Arabian Sea. This recommendation is defended by refuting the prevailing school of thought which contends that freedom of navigation can and must be maintained through the SOH. It dispels the myths and misperceptions regarding Irans inability to control the straits and our ability to fight our way inout of the Arabian Gulf. Finally, by drawing on examples from past operations, the paper supports the argument that a CNFs conventional advantages will allow them to achieve their desired objectives while limiting the scale of the conflict.
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics