Saudi showdown with Iran nears danger point for world oil markets

The Persian Gulf has become a strategic tinderbox.

Saudi Arabia’s drastic decision to behead the Shia cleric Nimr al-Nimr marks a point of no return in the bitter Sunni-Shia conflict engulfing the region. It is a dangerous escalation in the Kingdom’s struggle with Iran for regional hegemony.

Iran’s Revolutionary Guard has vowed swift and harsh revenge, promising to bring down the Saudi dynasty in short order to avenge this “medieval act of savagery”.

  • infedel

    We do not need mid eastern oil that we found for them. Ban them.

  • Gary

    Interesting, if they both wipe out their Oil productions it will force Obama and our Boy Blunder PM to make N.America self reliant for Oil and revive Alberta plus approve the Keystone Pipeline.

    Obama needs Oil to make the jet fuel for his 747 to go Golfing in California while Justin needs it for his $1 million dollar 1956 classic Benz .
    These Nabobs don’t really want to save the Planet , the proof will be when THEY are expected to live like the ignorant peons they reign over in their utopic Communism .

  • Maggat

    “medieval act of savagery”. That’s calling the kettle black.

  • Interesting article and comments. All I can say is the plague on both of their houses; may they destroy each other and all their friends. The world will be better off without them; peace will reign at last.

    • Right on.

      Let these rival stone age factions have a good go.

      American oil will be worth a fortune. The Saudi bank account will be sucked dry. Lots of Muslim brainwashed fruitcakes will be dead.

      When they get done killing each other, there will be a lull in WW3, for a while.

      But without Islamic reformation WW3 will continue, at a lower level, for at least a little bit.

      • All we need is good leadership with guts, and we can be rid of the Muslim menace in no time. Islam is a threat only because our media, etc. have turned us into weaklings.

        • Good point.

          Media – awaken from your slumber.

          Islamic theology creates a killing cult.

          Publish the real Koran, quit the white wash of Muslim women, quit helping the force for evil in the world.

  • V10_Rob

    Oh, if only there were a plentiful source of oil that wasn’t under the control of religious despots.

    Might as well wish for it to be located within our own national borders while I’m at it..

    • Bernie

      There is in Canada.

  • T.C.

    Meh. This armchair general says Iran’s air force is a joke. And since the Islamic State has managed to continue transporting and selling oil at $10 barrel into a saturated market in the face of western air strikes for a very long time now, then I don’t think much will happen to the price of oil if the Shi’ites actually do something stupid. Iran have not got the capacity or capability. It does have the manpower, but this has to get across the Gulf first, which they can’t do at the moment. No, what will probably happen is both sides will start genociding the elements of their populations that happen to be on the wrong end of what ever sect is in charge of these crap hole countries. SA will use helicopter gunships and Iran will use AK-47s. Sabotage is a given, but it won’t stop oil going to market. And both sides will just start pumping more oil as a result because they will need the $ for bullets. But I do imagine there are a few commodities traders out there sitting on stored oil over the $60/bbl mark and accruing interest who harbor desperate fantasies of $200/bbl oil.

    • marty_p

      Iran may be stupid enough to go to war – after all, remember the children used in mine clearing in the war with Iraq – with their plastic keys to paradise around their necks – the Iranians have bred a whole new generation of child martyrs ready to clear mine fields.
      It’ll be a fun war to watch …. the Saudi air force with all their shiny new American jets that they bought with petro dollars piloted by relatives of the monarchy – flying off to bomb Iran – the Iranians in response sending up Shah of Iran era relics – it’ll be a remake of the German invasion of Poland in 1939 when the Polish cavalry attempted to confront Panzer tanks.
      A subscription to Al Jazeera TV may be in order – pass the popcorn.

      I am waiting for the inevitable “It’s all a Zionist conspiracy by the Jewish bankers and war profiteers” claims.

      • T.C.

        Stupidy is a given, but the capacity to do so is questionable. But then stupid is stupid. Yes, I do remember the human wave minefield clearing, but according to recent demographic analysis, the birthrate in Iran has tanked. Probably because no one wants to bring up children in a gigantic concentration camp run by murderous theocrats. So Iran may not even have the children this time around. Projections indicate that by 2050, Iran, and Turkey, will be in worse shape demographicaly than Europe is today (I’m going by memory here, the details could be fuzzy). It’s gonna be a long four decades. By the way, WTI down another 1.31% and the morning just got started.

    • Norman_In_New_York

      A key question is whether the Saudis have the pipeline capacity to send its Gulf oil to the Red Sea port of Jeddah, where it could be exported through the Suez Canal. If so, then not much will change in the international price.

  • Barrington Minge

    “medieval act of savagery”. boy, and they should know!!!

  • simus1

    It is understood by both sides;, shia and sunni, that the saudi action is the practice of “real islam”, the way it is supposed to be seen and done. The only topper would have been if the saudis had had acted like craven “western leaders” and pretended to give in, which would have got the ayatollas into a total frenzy. Followed by a mysterious nuclear weapon going off in their midst in Tehran.

  • Barrington Minge

    Would anybody in the civilised world really care if Soddy and Iran went at it? Shia vs Sunni/Wahabi, mooslim against mooslim, 7th century cultists all.
    There will be no peace in the 7th century world until they have wiped each other out.

  • Hard Little Machine

    Obama’s plan such as it is, is to create an oil crisis so that his paymasters in Iran can jack up the price of oil. This is why Saudi Arabia announced two days ago they’re not going to reduce output.