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Q: USS Stark bombing ( Answered,   0 Comments )
Subject: USS Stark bombing
Category: Reference, Education and News > Current Events
Asked by: ajsi-ga
List Price: $5.00
Posted: 02 Feb 2005 10:32 PST
Expires: 04 Mar 2005 10:32 PST
Question ID: 467620
What is the story of the terrorist bombing of the USS Stark in 1987?
Subject: Re: USS Stark bombing
Answered By: thx1138-ga on 02 Feb 2005 11:17 PST
Hello ajsi and thank you for your question.

It wasn't a terrorist boming, more (it seems) a tragic case of mistaken identity.

"USS Stark (FFG-31)"
"Stark was deployed to the Middle East Force in 1984 and 1987. She is
remembered for the incident of May 17, 1987 when she was struck by two
Exocet missiles from an Iraqi Mirage fighter during the Iran-Iraq War.
The fighter had taken off from Shaibah at 20:00 and had flown south
into the Persian Gulf. Shortly after being routinely challenged by the
frigate at around 22:10 the fighter fired two Exocet ASM missiles. The
frigate did not detect the missile attack and both missiles struck
without warning. The first hit the port-side hull and left a three
metre by four metre gash when it exploded in crew quarters; the second
missile hit the superstructure of the frigate. Thirty-seven crew were
killed and twenty-one were injured. Prior to the gun turret explosion
onboard Iowa, it had been proclaimed as the worst US Naval peacetime
disaster. The frigate was afire but this was brought under control by
its crew during the night and the ship returned to Bahrain under her
own power. $142 million was spent repairing the vessel."

"The Iraqi pilot claimed that he had fired at Stark because he
believed her to be an Iranian vessel 20 to 25 miles inside the Iranian
exclusion zone. Stark's Captain Glenn Brindel was later relieved of
command and his recent promotion to captain was never confirmed; he
retired with the rank of commander."

There is a lengthy account here:

Thank you for your question, and if you need any clarification of my
answer, do not hesitate to ask before rating my answer.

Very best regards,


Search strategy included:
"uss stark" 1987 37
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