Iran’s Navy Seeking Blue Water in the Atlantic

Iran has announced its intention to send a naval group to the Atlantic Ocean, after approving a $500 million military spending package.  The approval of the spending was greeted with cries of “Death to America” by Iranian lawmakers.

Iran’s navy has been in a quest to achieve true “blue-water” status, with the ability to project power anywhere in the world.  Indeed, this is a similar path that China has been on as well.  Historically, navies have been an important arm of a country’s diplomacy, giving it the ability to exercise its will far from shore.  Currently, Iran’s navy is considered to be “green-water;” that is, it can operate within Iran’s home region (this is a step up from many countries’ navies, however, which are “brown-water,” i.e. able to operate only along their inland rivers and close to shore).

The desire to operate in the Atlantic Ocean is a bid by Iran to increase its world power and influence events in the Western Hemisphere.  Iran has already been active in Latin America for many years, working to achieve Iran’s economic, military, and propaganda goals in the region.  A true blue-water navy will assist Iran in this effort.

It will also drive the Arab Gulf states to look for support in countering Iran’s regional and global ambitions.  Currently, the region is eyeing both Russia and the United States to see who will step up to counter Iran.  With Russia a defacto ally of Iran, this may serve to help the U.S. maintain influence over the Middle East.  However, with recent missteps by the U.S., China is waiting in the wings to provide a viable alternative to either the U.S. or Russia as the region’s guardian.


Here come the U.S. Navy gender identity re-education camps

Earlier this year, the Obama administration officially lifted the U.S. military’s ban on soldiers with confused gender identity — colloquially and inaccurately known as “transgender.” On your dime, members of the military who identify as the opposite gender and have done so for at least 18 months will be able to get surgery, hormonal treatments, paid time off, etc.

But that’s just the start. Next comes the re-education:

In an all-Navy message published Tuesday, Chief of Naval Personnel Vice Adm. Robert Burke said a three-pronged training approach will equip senior leaders and rank-and-file personnel for the changes.

“This training will emphasize policies and expectations of personal behavior,” the message states.

Beginning Nov. 1, mobile training teams composed of Navy fleet representatives and subject matter expects will be dispatched to deliver face-to-face briefs to senior leaders, including commanding officers, executive officers, command master chiefs, and chiefs of boat.

These sessions will also be open to equal opportunity advisers, ombudsmen and other command-designated representatives who will have a role in training the tenant commands on policies governing transgender troops.

The camps — excuse me, the training — will be completed by next summer:

All sailors will have completed a training session on the new policies by July 1, 2017, Anderson said. That’s when the services plan to begin accepting transgender recruits for the first time.

Along with permitting transgender troops to serve openly, the military is creating procedures for troops to change their “gender marker” in the administrative Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System, and laying out rules to govern how troops might undergo medical gender transitions while in uniform.

Transgender troops will be required to use the bathroom and berthing facilities associated with their preferred gender, Navy officials have said.

And service leaders will be on alert for those who seek to single out or mistreat their transgender counterparts.

For all of the concern about President Barack Obama’s efforts to change America on climate change, health care, and other lefty liberal economic pipe dreams, it is perhaps on the LGBT front that he will be most remembered. The U.S. military should be about efficiency, and that efficiency should be focused on national defense. Allowing people with a mental illness that requires counseling to openly serve, and then enabling that mental illness on taxpayer dollars, fails to do that on all fronts.

I wonder what will constitute “harassment” once the Navy and the other armed services implement this re-education. Perhaps, like in Massachusetts, it will be illegal to call someone by the “wrong” pronoun?