Monday, January 14, 2008

Monkey Business in the Gulf?

It turns out that threatening radio messages, which nearly sparked a shoot-out between Iranian boats and three US Navy ships last week, may have been a hoax.

The Navy Times is reporting that a prankster known as the “Filipino Monkey” may have been the source of radio messages threatening to blow up the American ships. Iranian boats have approached Navy ships on several occasions in the past few weeks, but in this case the radio messages made an attack seem imminent. The Navy ships were reported to be within moments of firing on the Iranian boats when they withdrew.

The voice recorded making the threats sounded like a bad “Borat” imitation, so the hoax explanation does make some sense. For the past 25 years there have been incidences of threats, insults and nonsensical radio messages being sent to ships traveling through the Persian Gulf from someone calling themselves “the Filipino Monkey.”

There have been no reports of encounters with Iranian boats since the January 6 incident.
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