Contemporary Operating Environment

Houthi Suicide Boat Attack on a Saudi Frigate

By Vicky Osborn May 16, 2019

We've shared a few videos of SVBIEDs on the Cove, but what about boats?  In this short video shared via Task and Purpose, you can see a Houthi rebel suicide boat attack on a Saudi frigate.  You can read more about the attack on Task and Purpose's website.

But I thought the Cove was about fighting on the land, I hear you cry! Australian Army soldiers are increasingly operating off ships with the LHDs and the Australian Navy. Our future as soldiers is likely to be as part of a land force supporting a maritime strategy. So, the suicide boat is a genuine threat you might face. Imagine you are part of the embarked force on HMAS Canberra, and you see one of these speeding toward your ship. Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Is it your responsibility or the crew of the ship and its internal defences to deal with something like this?
  • What are the defences on the LHD? Do they have automated machine guns?  What are their ROE?  If you don't know, how would you find out?
  • How would you deal with the aftermath of such an attack?  What are the medical responses on the ship?  Would there be a firefighting responsibility?



Vicky Osborn

Vicky Osborn is an Education Officer posted to Headquarters Forces Command, Directorate of Professional Military Education. Previous postings include the Army Knowledge Centre (ALPC) and Army Logistics Training Centre.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the position of the Australian Army, the Department of Defence or the Australian Government.

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