Skip to main content

Closing the straits of Hormuz

In the Cold War, there were a series of existential nightmares that kept policy planners awake at nights. One of them was the cutting of the vital oil supply lines from the Persian Gulf to the West. Today, the Iranian regime has threatened to cut the straits of Hormuz, if the United States tries to returns its carrier to its base in Bahrain. Iran has also tested a missile that could sink a carrier in the precise same place.


Iran has also, rather mysteriously, shot down a US unmanned drone. The best technology to do that is in Russia. Russia, the logical conclusion must be, has supplied technology to Iran in order to do this. Closing the Hormuz straits would certainly increase the price of oil- which might save the increasingly unstable Putin regime. When one therefore thinks "cui bono?", the answer must be that Moscow and Tehran have several things in common.


"Some damn thing in the Balkans" was the policy nightmare a hundred years ago. Now, it is the cutting of oil supply to the West by an Iran supported by the criminal regime in Moscow. The fact that China also took a look at the drone cannot have gone down well in the US.


This is spectacularly dangerous.


If Iran tries to close the straits, the response will be overwhelming force. 


The slightest miscalculation will start the Third World War. 



Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Cicero ReDux

By Special Request of Baroness Scott and Mark Valladares... Cicero's Songs returns: bigger, longer and uncut.
October 1st marked the half way point of the Estonian Presidency of the European Union.  Perhaps for many people such an anniversary is of passing interest at best.  Yet the conduct of the Estonian Presidency is reinforcing just how forward looking and innovative the most northerly of the Baltic States has become.
Estonia is a country that wants to live in the future, and with its openness and innovation, that future seems a lot closer than almost anywhere else in Europe
It is not that Estonia does not “do” the past: the picturesque cobbled streets of old Tallinn have tourist crowds a-plenty enjoying the mediaeval architecture in an Indian summer of sunshine and blue skies.  The real point is that Estonia refuses to be a prisoner of its past. Lennart Meri, Estonia’s President in the 1990s- who spent years of his childhood in Siberia- once told me that the country had to conc…

The American National nightmare becomes a global nightmare

It is a basic contention of this blog that Donald J Trump is not fit for office.

A crooked real estate developer with a dubious past and highly questionable finances. he has systematically lied his way into financial or other advantage. His personal qualities include vulgarity, sexual assault allegations and fraudulent statements on almost every subject. 

He lost the popular vote by nearly three million votes.

He has, of course, been under criminal investigation practically since before he took the oath of office. The indictment of some of closest advisers is just the beginning. His track record suggests that in due course there is no action he will not take, whether illegal or unconstitutional in order to derail his own inevitable impeachment and the indictments that must surely follow the successful investigation of Robert Mueller into his connections with Russia.

However, all of that is a matter for the American people. 

It is also a matter for the American people that Trump is cheating…

In praise of off-shore tax havens

The last few years has seen a spate of "scandals" about the use of off-shore tax havens. The hacking and subsequent leaking of data about who does and does not hold assets in off-shore jurisdictions has become an old perennial in the British press, rather like the "COLD weather happens in winter and QUITE HOT weather happens in summer", whose alarmist capital letter laced headlines are such a lazy part of contemporary "journalism". 

The increasing sophistication of the hackers, whether Russian-inspired or not, has resulted in a steady trickle of information becoming a torrent. After the relatively filleted release of data in the so-called "Panama Papers", the data release of the "Paradise Papers" is even larger.  Of course, just natural curiosity dictates that the off-shore ownership, or even just "ownership", of assets is of general public interest.  Celebrities, from the Royal family to the cast of Mrs Brown's Boys, are …