Bab al-Mandab, Yemen 0
18 September 2019

U.S. Secretary of State Pompeo remarked that the 14 September attack on Saudi energy facilities “didn’t come from the Huthis…This was an Iranian attack. It’s not the case that you can subcontract out the devastation of five per cent of the world’s global energy supply and think that you can absolve yourself of responsibilities”. Pompeo also indicated that “we are working to build out a coalition to develop a plan to deter” Iran. He went on to assert that “some suggest that the President’s strategy that we allowed isn’t working. I would argue just the converse of that. I would argue that what you are seeing here is a direct result of us reversing the enormous failure of the JCPOA”. Pompeo added that “55 weeks from now, the whole world can sell exactly these missile systems, conventional missile systems to the Iranian government unencumbered by any sanctions… they’d have more complex ones but for the sanctions we put in place”. Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif seized on Pompeo’s characterisation of the 14 September attack as an “act of war” to posit “’act of war’ or agitation for war? Remnants of the B-Team (and ambitious allies) try to deceive President Trump into war”. Zarif also suggested “seizing [the] opportunity to end disaster in Yemen – not widening it”.

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