Missile Strike Threatens US Destroyer

Recently, the U.S. Navy destroyer USS Mason was involved in a high-stakes incident in the Gulf of Aden, near Yemen’s coast. Responding to a distress signal from the commercial tanker M/V Central Park, the USS Mason navigated to an area approximately 35 miles south of Yemen.

The tanker, under the Liberian flag and managed by Britain’s Zodiac Maritime, was reportedly hijacked by five armed individuals. Zodiac Maritime disclosed that the vessel was transporting phosphoric acid and had a diverse crew from Bulgaria, Georgia, India, the Philippines, Russia, Vietnam, and Turkey.

Upon the USS Mason’s arrival, the hijackers attempted to escape in a small boat but were subsequently apprehended by the U.S. Navy.

Amidst this rescue operation, a new threat emerged. The U.S. military’s Central Command (CENTCOM) reported that two ballistic missiles were fired from Houthi-controlled areas in Yemen towards the USS Mason and M/V Central Park. These missiles, launched soon after the arrest of the hijackers, landed about 10 nautical miles from the two ships, fortunately causing no damage or injuries.

The Yemeni government, as reported by Jennifer Griffin, Fox News’ chief national security correspondent, accused Iranian-backed Houthi rebels of orchestrating the attack on the M/V Central Park. Griffin, citing information from two senior U.S. officials, confirmed that the Houthis were responsible for the missile attack.

Griffin reported on X (formerly Twitter): “Two senior U.S. officials tell me that Houthi forces fired two ballistic missiles at the USS Mason this evening in the Gulf of Aden following the Navy’s arrest of 5 gunmen who tried to hijack the MV Central Park. The U.S. Navy successfully rescued the vessel.”

The USS Mason, an Arleigh Burke Class destroyer, tracked the missiles as they approached, both of which ultimately missed their targets.

This incident is part of a broader pattern of naval attacks in the Middle East, with links to the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas, designated as a terrorist organization by the Associated Press.