Things aren’t going well back in Washington. It’s all Alberto Gonzales and the fired US attorneys, 24/7 on the cable news channel. What can the administration do to change the conversation? How about sending the US Navy to engage in a few maneuvers off the coast of Iran?

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — The U.S. Navy on Tuesday began its largest demonstration of force in the Persian Gulf since the 2003 invasion of Iraq, led by a pair of aircraft carriers and backed by warplanes flying simulated attack maneuvers off the coast of Iran.

The maneuvers bring together two strike groups of U.S. warships and more than 100 U.S. warplanes to conduct simulated air warfare in the crowded Gulf shipping lanes.

Ah, the joys of flying simulated bombing runs against Middle Eastern nations we don’t like. I’m sure that will do wonders for the delicate diplomatic efforts that are supposedly ongoing to get Iran to stop enriching uranium. It’s just a game after all. Nothing to get your knickers all in a twist. Just a few hundred or so fly boys having fun with their warplanes in the most critical region of the world. I’m sure no one in Iran would conceive of it as a possible threat. Or would they?


U.S. Navy Cmdr. Kevin Aandahl said the U.S. maneuvers were not organized in response to the capture of the British sailors _ nor were they meant to threaten the Islamic Republic, whose navy operates in the same waters.

He declined to specify when the Navy planned the exercises. […]

Overall, the exercises involve more than 10,000 U.S. personnel on warships and aircraft making simulated attacks on enemy shipping with aircraft and ships, hunting enemy submarines and finding mines.

“What it should be seen as by Iran or anyone else is that it’s for regional stability and security,” Aandahl said. “These ships are just another demonstration of that. If there’s a destabilizing effect, it’s Iran’s behavior.”

Yes, we are engaging in provocative military maneuvers suggestive of an all out air strike against Iranian military and civilian targets, in order to stabilize the region. And it comes just days after Iran captured 15 UK sailors for allegedly intruding into Iranian territorial waters. What a coincidence.

And some people still think Bush doesn’t want a war with Iran? He’s practically salivating at the chance. Rally round the President boys! Can’t hold no oversight hearings in a time of war! That would be tantamount to … (I’ll let you fill in the blank).