Eyes of the Fleet

Eyes of the Fleet

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Some details on the nuisance rocket attack on US ships in August

Details of the failed rocket attack on US war ships in Jordan earlier this year are contained in this Early Warning by William M. Arkin:
Jordanian authorities determined, according to U.S. intelligence reports, that three Iraqis entered Jordan on or about Aug. 6 from Iraq, linking up with a Syrian national already present in the country. The three Iraqis drove a seemingly standard oil tanker truck (Iraq, even under Saddam Hussein, provided Jordan with much of its oil) into the country; investigators later discovered that the fuel tank had been modified to accommodate at least seven Katyusha rockets, the standard in the Iraqi (and Syrian) armies.
Seems like a lot of trouble to go to for an unguided rocket system that is notorious for its inaccuracy. I also doubt that the Katyusha is the "standard" of any modern military. The fact that Zarqawi claimed credit for such a feeble attack (and for the recent suicide bombings of a wedding) does not seem to me to indicate that he is operating out of a position of strength.

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