On Sunday, after the Saturday attacks on two oil refineries in Saudi Arabia that destroyed 5% of the world’s oil supply, prompting accusations from the U.S. government that the attacks were launched by Iran, a top Iranian general boasted that U.S. sites were in range of Iranian missiles and Iran was ready for a “full-fledged” war.
Amirali Hajizadeh, who heads Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Corps Aerospace, bragged, “Everybody should know that all American bases and their aircraft carriers in a distance of up to 2,000 kilometers (1,250 miles) around Iran are within the range of our missiles,” adding “Iran has always been ready for a ‘full-fledged’ war,” as quoted by the semi-official Tasnim news agency and reported by Reuters.
The Daily Mail noted, “Analysts fear the attacks – which heightened tensions in the region after the US blamed Iran – could push the price of crude oil up by $10 a barrel, which would translate to 22 cents per gallon at the pumps.” The Times of Israel quoted Andrew Lipow, president of the U.S. consulting firm Lipow Oil Associates, saying, “This is a big deal. Fearing the worst, I expect that the market will open $5 to $10 per barrel up.”
After the attacks, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo tweeted on Saturday, “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.” The Times of Israel noted, “The attacks followed weeks of similar drone assaults on the kingdom’s oil infrastructure, but none of the earlier strikes appeared to have caused the same amount of damage.”
In mid-August, Reuters reported that Iranian President Hassan Rouhani warned that if Iran’s oil exports were reduced to zero, international waterways would not be as safe as before, threatening, “World powers know that in the case that oil is completely sanctioned and Iran’s oil exports are brought down to zero, international waterways can’t have the same security as before.” Reuters noted that Rouhani’s remark “coincided with a remark by Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif that Tehran might act ‘unpredictably’ in response to ‘unpredictable’ U.S. policies under President Donald Trump.”
In July, according to the Tasnim news agency, Hossein Nejat, a brigadier general in Iran’s Revolutionary Guards, stated, “American bases are within the range of our missiles … Our missiles will destroy their aircraft carriers if they make a mistake. Americans are very well aware of the consequences of a military confrontation with Iran.”
As The Counter Extremism Project has noted:
The Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) is tasked with preserving the Islamic Republic of Iran and the ideals of the 1979 revolution. The IRGC combines traditional military roles with a relentless focus on supposed domestic enemies. The IRGC is Iran’s primary instrument for exporting the ideology of the Islamic Revolution worldwide. It is rigidly loyal to Iran’s clerical elite. The IRGC is Iran’s main link to its terrorist proxies, which the regime uses to boost Iran’s global influence.