Rough Seas and New Names

Reagan defends his plan to beef up the U.S. presence in the gulf

Kuwaiti oil tankers once known as the exotic-sounding Al Rekkah and Casbah will soon be traversing the Persian Gulf bearing such familiar American names as Sea Isle City and Ocean City. But more than just the names will have changed. Under the plan President Reagan announced in the wake of Iraq's inadvertent attack on the U.S.S. Stark, eleven Kuwaiti tankers are scheduled to begin sailing under the Stars and Stripes next week. They will be captained by American skippers and escorted by American warships as they ply the world's most treacherous waterway.

At the moment, the plan has hit even rougher...