Greece Nixes US Request to Join Persian Gulf Operations

(AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris, FILE)

Stepping up military cooperation, the United States reportedly asked the Greek Navy take part in a multinational naval force patrolling the Persian Gulf where Iran has been accused of being behind attacks on tankers during rising tensions – but was rejected.

The US request included asking for a frigate, or with an aerial intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance tool, said Kathimerini, without indicating the source. But with Turkey upping provocations in the Aegean and East Mediterranean, Greece doesn’t have enough tools for its own air surveillance, the paper said.

After a series of meetings of the Greek Defense and Foreign ministries, it was decided the Hellenic Navy cannot currently provide any frigates due to its standby situation in the Aegean and the Eastern Mediterranean with Turkey, the paper said.

Greece also noted it was also taking part in all allied naval training exercises – as it did with the Aigaion frigate in the multinational drill off the Israeli coast, which simulated conditions created by a massive earthquake.

But the Greek government said it would make personnel already in the United Arab Emirates available to the US military to participate in teams monitoring gulf with anxiety over a possible conflict in the Strait of Hormuz.

The US request for a Greek contribution to a multinational naval force was made on a bilateral level, as there is no decision by the United Nations or any other international organization for action against Iran, the report added.
Other major European Union countries, including Germany, has refused to join a US-led naval force, and France also said it keep up contacts with Iran in defiance of American requests, adding to the tension after the US Ambassador to Germany scolded the government for not paying its required contribution to NATO.

While Greece said it was already occupied with the Aegean and East Mediterranean, the paper said the underlying reason was staying out of the Persian Gulf and avoiding being entangled with any brouhaha with Iran.

Ironically, it’s Greece’s new New Democracy administration that is trying to keep its distance after the former ruling Radical Left SYRIZA abandoned its anti-American stance to step up military cooperation between the countries to help more.


  1. The French always go against the grain, as they have business dealings with corrupt countries everywhere. As for Greece as long as its part of certain organizations it should participate, Greece’s wimpy contribution to Afghanistan was insulting to me after all America has done, yes lots of bad too, but this is fighting next to real Americans not stupid politicians, go on YouTube there are videos of Americans fighting side by side with? Not Greeks but “SKOPJE” soldiers!!!! What a disgrace to Greece. Yet everytime Turkey does something Greece calls America, NATO, EU, etc for help…Either man up or F-Off.

    1. Greece sent troops to North Korea who fought bravely and were commended by the allies. They fought side by side with Greek American troops and many never returned home. They sent troops to Afghanistan just not many but more than Skopje did. The pic you saw was a propaganda pic to show the world why they deserve the name. If NATO and the US would guarantee the safety of the Greek islands from their barbaric neighbor, I’m sure Greece would’ve gladly sent a frigate to the Persian gulf.

  2. The U.S.has not prevented Turkey from occupying northern Cyprus since 1974, has not stopped Turkey from currently drilling in its waters and threatening Greece, and is tolerating Turkey’s purchase of S-400 missiles from Russia which are a threat to Greece and Israel. Turkey is already another Iran, even while bring a NATO “ally”. Greece has not received the unequivocal support from the U.S. that would allow non-U.N. led activity against Iran. Greece’s economy is in tatters and it can not afford to send resources to the Persian Gulf unless its own security is guaranteed.

  3. Yes Greece went to Korea, and fought well, so did Turkey, when NATO meant something, even though greece spends the required GDP the buy the dumbest equipment, bribes by Germans, And about Skopje it was a video shot well before the new name was being considered, No combat footage or pics of any Greek troops since 1974? Pretend dogfights, ships sailing around Imia is not combat, greece cannot even protect itself, thats why its part of NATO, the EU etc.. Turkey says boo and greece runs to the U.N., calls Washington in the dead of night. The Astynomia in Athina see more combat then greek soldiers, the assets sent to Afghanistan were mainly a medical team… I just think at least a drone for security could be sent, good training. I live here use our tax money for defense of us and the world.

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