Hormuz is finally getting attention


The Belmont Club has an extensive report  today about the world—wide economic consequences if the mullahs closed the Straits of Hormuz.  Iran has implied that the straits could be shut down if the US and Europe press their case for sanctions because of Iran's nuclear program.  According to ABC News on the not—so—subtle threat:

Iran's top nuclear official has warned the United States and Europe of the danger of an oil crisis if Tehran is sent before the United Nations Security Council over its nuclear program. ... "The first to suffer will be Europe and the United States themselves, this would cause problems for the regional energy market, for the European economy and even more so for the United States," he said.

Austin Bay also provides important analysis, and even notes the opportunity this could present to the US and the Coalition if we were forced to take military action:

Moreover, risk—taking Iranian mullahs fascinated by the Hormuz Option had better poll of their own military commanders and get an honest assessment of morale.  Revolutionary Guards attacking US forces will have a very short life expectancy — and that will leave fewer thugs to oppress the populace in Tehran.  The Iranian people know what's going on in the world, and the big story (one even the New York Times now appreciates) is the freedom's surge in the Middle East. Put US troops in Hormuz and presto, Free Iran has a toehold [emphasis mine].

What both articles miss is that the mullahs have had the opportunity to shut down the straits since 1992 when the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps seized complete control of Abu Musa Island ; something American Thinker readers knew about almost a year ago.

Austin Bay is correct that the Revolutionary Guards would have a short life expectancy, especially given the strength of Naval and Marine forces currently arrayed in the Gulf, which AT readers learned about last week.  Also Bay's thinking is certainly in line with CENTCOM's apparent long—range strategy  to roll back Iranian gains from the last 12 years, and to set the conditions for freedom and democracy in Iran.

Doug Hanson   03—07—05