USA unlikely to go it alone on Iran

Increasing economic and military US pressure on Iran threatens to escalate tensions in the Middle East, RISS expert Vladimir Evseev considers. Any provocation may result in a devastating military confrontation. In addition, Israel and Saudi Arabia are interested in aggravating the conflict. "The White House believes that it can control the situation, but we should not forget that many countries continued to fight, even though both sides knew the war was pointless," he said.

RISS expert recalled that recently Washington had blamed Tehran for oil tanker attack on Gulf of Oman and had ordered thousands more American troops to the Persian Gulf. The Pentagon has also announced its plans to send thousands of additional troops to the Middle East to bolster security. Speaking about the economic pressure, US sanctions has already reduced Iranian oil exports by less than 0.5 millon barrels per day. Compared to a year ago, Iran was exporting around 2.6 million barrels per day of crude oil. "This is a very serious blow for the Iranian economy. Tehran has vast oil amounts stored in sea tankers. Now it has only two major oil buyers – China and Turkey," V.Evseev pointed out.

He drew attention to the fact that the Strait of Hormuz was a key route of the global oil and liquefied natural gas (LNG) market. A disruption of oil and LNG through the Strait of Hormuz may significantly affect global prices and lead to a "shock" to the global economy. Energy prices jump will hit many countries. "Russia will do its best to prevent this scenario. In the framework of the upcoming G20 Osaka Summit, the Russian side intends to express its concern to Washington about this situation," he said.

RISS expert also underscored that Washington was unlikely to go it alone on Tehran even despite US significant military superiority. "The Arab League has no consensus yet among member states on Iran. For example, Saudi Arabia and Iran are bitter rivals, and relations between Iran and UAE begin to improve slowly. If the world community doesn't support the USA, the chances of military clashes will decrease a lot," he concluded.

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