The United States has long grappled with fears (however unfounded) that Iran is developing nuclear weapons. But it wasn’t that long ago that the United States had its hands full with Iran’s conventional weapons, namely its navy (what there was of it, that is). It was, writes David Crist in an article for Politico Magazine titled What Obama Should Learn From Reagan’s War With Iran, “a chapter of history that most U.S. policymakers—and too many military officers—have long forgotten.”
President Barack Obama must have spent last week wondering if he’d stumbled back into the 1980s as he responded to new Iranian aggressions in the Strait of Hormuz and ordered the Navy’s 5th Fleet to escort ships transiting the Persian Gulf. The headlines could have been ripped right out of Ronald Reagan’s presidency, when naval engagements with Iran became all-too commonplace.