ABC Turns a Blind Eye to Iran’s Failed Attempt to Capture a British Oil Tanker

Overnight, the rogue Iranian regime had their Revolutionary Guard spark another international incident by assailing a British oil tanker. It was the latest in a series of attacks by Iran, which included the bombing of several other oil tankers, but ABC News didn’t think it was important enough to tell their millions of viewers about during their flagship morning and evening newscasts on Thursday.

NBC’s Today quickly covered Iran’s transgression with a 25-second news brief delivered by co-anchor Savannah Guthrie:

And now to escalating tensions in the Middle East. Overnight, several Iranian boats attempted to impede the passage of a British oil tanker in the Strait of Hormuz, but those boats were driven away by a British military ship. A senior U.S. official says the Iranian boats were attempting to push the tanker to territorial waters. Iran denies these allegations. The incident, of course, just the latest in a series of disputes involving Iran in and around the Strait of Hormuz.

In contrast, on CBS This Morning, international correspondent Charlie D’Agata told the tale of how a British warship “the HMS Montrose wedged itself between the cargo ship and three Iranian paramilitary vessels, demanding safe passage of this cargo ship, the British Heritage, registered to British Petroleum. The Iranian boats backed off.”

 

 

D’Agata noted that the action by Iran was possibly retaliatory. “The scrap on the high seas comes a week to the day since a British commando seized an Iranian super-tanker over the coast of Gibraltar over accusations it was breaking sanctions by transporting oil to Syria,” he explained.

“Just yesterday Iranian President Hassan Rouhani warned there would be consequences and that the British were ‘sick’ to send frigates to escort their ships,” he added.

Interestingly, that British seizure went largely ignored by the network newscasts before now.

Instead of reporting on this latest provocation by Iran during their Thursday evening, ABC’s World News Tonight spent time hyping Amazon Prime Day, turbulence on an Air Canada flight, and telling viewers how to evade ICE raids.

Unfortunately, both CBS and NBC didn’t provide an update during their evening newscasts.

The transcripts are below, click "expand" to read:

CBS This Morning
July 11, 2019
7:10:34 a.m. Eastern

TONY DOKOUPIL: Right now we have breaking news from the Middle East. Britain said overnight that three Iranian boats tried to intercept a British oil tanker. The confrontation took place in the Strait of Hormuz, a vital shipping lane at the center of current tensions with Iran. Charlie D'Agata, who's reported extensively from the region, is following develops from London. Charlie, what happened?

CHARLIE D’AGATA: Well, British military officials confirmed to us this morning Iranian boats attempted to impede that British tanker overnight before a Navy escort issued verbal warnings to get out of the way.

[Cuts to video]

British Navy officials tell CBS News this warship, the HMS Montrose wedged itself between the cargo ship and three Iranian paramilitary vessels, demanding safe passage of this cargo ship, the British Heritage, registered to British Petroleum. The Iranian boats backed off.

The scrap on the high seas comes a week to the day since a British commando seized an Iranian super-tanker over the coast of Gibraltar over accusations it was breaking sanctions by transporting oil to Syria. Accusations denied by Iran.

Just yesterday Iranian President Hassan Rouhani warned there would be consequences and that the British were “sick” to send frigates to escort their ships.

Tensions were already high after a series of attacks on tankers in recent weeks blamed on Iran. When we were last there, U.S. Navy gunboats took us to see up close the damage Navy investigators told us caused by the kind of limpid mines used by Iran's Revolutionary Guard.

This, despite a significant U.S. military buildup in the region including the USS Abraham Lincoln strike carrier group and B-52 bombers.

[Cuts back to live]

Iran’s Revolutionary Guard is denying it confronted any “alien vessels”, especially British. They said that if they had received the order to seize a ship, they would have done so immediately. Michelle.

 

NBC’S Today
July 11, 2019
7:31:25 a.m. Eastern

SAVANNAH GUTHRIE: And now to escalating tensions in the Middle East. Overnight, several Iranian boats attempted to impede the passage of a British oil tanker in the Strait of Hormuz, but those boats were driven away by a British military ship. A senior U.S. official says the Iranian boats were attempting to push the tanker to territorial waters. Iran denies these allegations. The incident, of course, just the latest in a series of disputes involving Iran in and around the Strait of Hormuz.

NB Daily Foreign Policy Britain Middle East Iran Bias by Omission Broadcast Television ABC Good Morning America World News Tonight CBS CBS This Morning Video Charlie D'Agata Savannah Guthrie

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