The top U.S. Navy official in the Mideast said Sunday that America has reached an “uneasy deterrence” with Iran after months of regional attacks and seizures at sea, even as tensions remain high between Washington and Tehran over the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program.
Vice Adm. Sam Paparo, who oversees the Navy’s 5th Fleet based in Bahrain, struck an academic tone in comments to the annual Manama Dialogue hosted by the International Institute for Strategic Studies.
He described having a “healthy respect” for both Iran’s regular navy and the naval forces of its paramilitary Revolutionary Guard.
“We have achieved an uneasy deterrence. That uneasy deterrence is exacerbated by world events and by events along the way,” the vice-admiral said.
“But I have found Iranian activity at sea to be cautious and circumspect and respectful, to not risk unnecessary miscalculation or escalation at sea.”