Analysis:
What prompted Iran's massive attack on Saudi oil industry?

What's behind the massive attack by Iranian-backed forces on Saudi Arabia's oil industry?

Yochanan Visser,

Fire at Aramco oil facility in Abqaiq, Saudi Arabia, September 14, 2019.
Fire at Aramco oil facility in Abqaiq, Saudi Arabia, September 14, 2019.
REUTERS

Iran just launched a massive attack on Saudi Arabia’s oil industry, which disrupted five percent of the world’s oil supply.

Although Iran denies any involvement in the attack with explosives-loaded drones and cruise missiles which was claimed by the Iranian proxy Ansar Allah (Houthi) militia in Yemen, American officials say the attack was carried out from Iraqi soil by the al-Hashd al-Sha’abi umbrella organization of predominantly Shiite militias.

Al-Hashd al-Sha’abi was founded by Iranian-backed Shiite militias in Iraq to fight Islamic State but recently the organization has expanded its operations and is now carrying out missions in Syria and Saudi Arabia.

For this reason, the Israeli military earlier this year decided to target al-Hashd al-Sha’abi and uses drones to disrupt the supply of sophisticated Iranian weapons to Iraq.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo wrote on Twitter that he had evidence the attacks on Saudi Arabia’s state-owned Aramco oil facilities in Abqaiq and Khurais near the Iraqi border should be attributed to Iran and its Iraqi proxy.

“Tehran is behind nearly 100 attacks on Saudi Arabia while Rouhani and Zarif pretend to engage in diplomacy. Amid all the calls for de-escalation, Iran has now launched an unprecedented attack on the world’s energy supply. There is no evidence the attacks came from Yemen," Pompeo wrote on his Twitter account referring to the Iranian President and Minister of Foreign Affairs Javad Zarif.

Pompeo added that Iran would be held “accountable for its aggression” and that the US would work with other oil suppliers to make up for the shortfall in Saudi Arabia’s oil output.

“There's no doubt that Iran is responsible for this. No matter how you slice it, there's no escaping it. There's no other candidate," another senior US official told reporters in Washington DC.

Iran responded by claiming the allegations against the Islamic Republic were “pointless” and by boasting it was ready for “full-fledged” war.

The commander of the aerospace force of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), Amir Ali Hajizadeh furthermore threatened the US military in the Middle East and claimed all US bases and aircraft carriers were within range of Iranian ballistic missiles.

The Iranian threats were answered by President Donald J. Trump who said on Twitter that the US military was “locked and loaded” for a potential response to the attack on the oil facilities of its most important Arab ally.

“There is reason to believe that we know the culprit, are locked and loaded depending on verification, but are waiting to hear from the Kingdom (Saudi Arabia) as to who they believe was the cause of this attack, and under what terms we would proceed," Trump wrote on his Twitter account.

The American leader also authorized the use of the US emergency oil stockpile to ensure there would be no disruptions in the world’s oil supply while Saudi Arabia did the same.

Republican Senator Lindsey Graham now calls for US attacks on Iranian oil facilities and said that Iran was “not interested in peace”.

The reason why Iran continues to attack Saudi Arabia via its proxies in Yemen and Iraq lies in the so-called ‘Mahdi doctrine’.

One of the pillars of this messianic doctrine, which envisions the return of the Shiite messiah Mahdi, also called the hidden twelfth imam, is the beginning of an Islamic uprising that will spread all over the world. This uprising will be accompanied by mayhem and chaos as well as an increase in natural and man-made disasters.

Another important event which will hasten the coming of the Shi’ite messiah is “a holy revolution” which is to take place in Yemen,” according to a documentary produced by the Iranian regime in 2011.

The (Shiite) soldiers of Mahdi will enter Saudi Arabia and the Muslim holy places via Yemen after a bloody battle which involves the Houthis, an Arab legion, the U.S. and Israel, according to the documentary “the Coming is upon us”.

The documentary also predicts the annihilation of Israel which according to the Iranian regime will occur after additional forces will arrive from Iraq.

“The annihilation of the Zionist regime and the conquering of ‘Beitol Moghadas’ (Jerusalem) is one of the most important events in the age of the Coming,” the voiceover in the movie says.

From here it is easy to understand why Iran is using Yemen and Iraq as springboards for attacks on Saudi Arabia and why Iran is building up Shiite forces in Syria and Iraq as a preparation for a war with Israel.

It also explains why Iran is waging a war of attrition against Israel via its proxies in Gaza and Lebanon.

According to the Mahdi doctrine, Iraq should become the center of the Shiite revolution which will spread across the globe because the Shiite messiah will turn Baghdad into the capital of his kingdom.

Iran is constantly meddling in Iraq’s domestic policies and has succeeded to integrate the al-Hashd al-Shaabi militias into the Iraqi military which receives its weapons from the US mainly.




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