The USS Seawolf is currently visiting the British territory of Gibraltar.

In 2018, the USS Newport News, a Los Angeles class submarine, was harassed by Spanish vessels while visiting Gibraltar.

Local media reported that eyewitnesses said a Spanish customs boat was intercepted by a Gibraltar Defence Police vessel after it came too close to the US submarine. The report states:

“Officials at the MoD and The Convent were looking into the incident last night to establish the sequence of events and assess what happened and where. If classed as an incursion, the incident will almost certainly draw a diplomatic protest, as happens as a matter of routine with all incursions by Spanish state vessels.”

In addition, last May a Spanish patrol boat reportedly tried to “hassle” an American nuclear submarine attempting to dock at Gibraltar. According to multiple sources, flares were fired across the bow of the Spanish Guardia Civil vessel Rio Cedena in mid-April as it twice attempted to sail across the front of the American ballistic missile submarine USS Florida.

There have been no reports of this happening this time, however.

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WillDbeest
WillDbeest
10 months ago

How does it make any sense for the Spanish to hassle a US sub?

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
10 months ago
Reply to  WillDbeest

It doesn’t.

Which begs the question what Madrid are playing at? I can understand them giving RN surface vessels a hard time, but submarines especially USN submarines, SSBN’s included, strikes me as pushing your luck somewhat. Why would Madrid wind up the US? It does not make any sense at all… If they damaged a US sub or even a RN sub would be a serious diplomatic issue.

Makes no sense at all.

Cheers CR

Squirrel Nutkins
Squirrel Nutkins
10 months ago
Reply to  WillDbeest

One wonders if Madrid is fully in command and control of certain areas of its defence, maybe rogue elements in its Navy trying to stoke up anti UK/Gibraltar feeling. Rogue ships commanders playing silly buggers.

pkcasimir
pkcasimir
10 months ago

One wonders just what the Seawolf is up to. It’s home port is in Puget Sound, Washington State and it was recently spotted in Norway as well off of the coast of Scotland. Moreover, the US maintains a large naval presence at Rota, Spain, approximately 150 kms from Gibraltar.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
10 months ago
Reply to  pkcasimir

Working on something with UK & Norway?

Just idle speculation!

Deep32
Deep32
10 months ago

Probably conducting ISR ops in the far North……

Challenger
Challenger
10 months ago
Reply to  pkcasimir

Does Rota have Z Berths? I’m sure the main reason is Gibraltar’s the only facility in the region capable of hosting nuclear subs.

pkcasimir
pkcasimir
10 months ago
Reply to  Challenger

Rota has been a US Navy base for decades and US subs have used its facilities for decades. And the US only has nuclear subs. The USS Scorpion was enroute to Rota when it disappeared.

Steve Salt
Steve Salt
10 months ago
Reply to  pkcasimir

Wasn’t it on route to Norfolk outbound from Rota?

pkcasimir
pkcasimir
10 months ago
Reply to  Steve Salt

Yes. Scorpion departed Rota on April 28, 1968. I misremembered as George Bush would have said.

dan
dan
10 months ago

Creepy, old Joe Biden will stop these visits because it doesn’t want to offend Spain. Ugh

Meirion X
Meirion X
10 months ago
Reply to  dan

Fake News! The new incoming SoD Gen. Lloyd Austin, a safe pair of hands, will very Unlikely end USN visits to Gibr.