According to news reports the US has retaliated against shore radars in Yemen with Tomahawk cruise missiles.
OK. I wonder why the USS Mason did not sink attacking small boats with the 20mm, 4500 rds/minute radar trained gatling guns on board. there usually are two, one in the bow and another at the stern. These things have a range of over 2 miles and will chew a speed boat to bits in an instant. The Mason would also have had one or two 5 inch radar trained naval guns. If you are attacked at sea you sink the opponent. That is basic stuff, especially when you consider the unforgiving nature of the US Navy when dealing with a commanding officer who lets one of their precious ships be damaged. I was on the JCS investigating board for the Iraqi attack on USS Stark. The circumstances of the damage on the ship were quite ambiguous but the captain and his officers knew well from the beginning that their careers were at an end in spite of the fact that they managed to save the burned out ship. So, why did the CO of USS Mason not react more forcefully DURING the attack?
And then there is the little matter of the identity of the attackers. As some here know I was Defense Attaché in Yemen long ago and know the country well having repeatedly returned. The Houthis are, IMO, unlikely to have anti-ship missiles. These are small arms equipped tribal guerrillas. There is a portion of the Yemen Army that has remained allied with the Houthis and loyal to former president, Salih. These fellows have a "missile battalion" with which they have been shooting at targets in Saudi Arabia with SCUD (old Soviet stocks?) and other ballistic missiles. The targets are just about all military in nature; air bases, ground force positions, etc., and they have been hitting a lot of them. Might they have old Chinese Silkworm anti-ship missiles or the like? Certainly.
IMO it is impossible at this time and on the basis of available information to decide exactly what has transpired in this ship action against shore batteries and who did what. pl