“Surely, one must ask why the United States demands that its ‘European allies’ act contrary to their own national interests, pay a higher price for oil by boycotting Iranian oil and running the risk of Iran blocking the passage of other oil-tankers destined for them?” Soraya Sepahpour-Ulrich, a public diplomacy scholar and independent researcher, wrote on the Global Research website.
Iranian lawmaker Ebrahim Aqa-Mohammadi announced Monday that Majlis (parliament) is planning to codify a double-urgency bill aimed at closing the Strait of Hormuz in response to the US-led EU embargo on the country’s oil industry.
The Strait of Hormuz is a narrow waterway which connects the Persian Gulf on the west to the Sea of Oman.
Statistically, the passageway is one of the world's most important shipping lanes, with a daily flow of about 15 million barrels of oil.
Sepahpour said the bill gives Tehran “the upper hand” and makes clear that “the heavy cost associated with the embargo will not be borne by Iran alone.”
Even if Iran simply chooses “to merely delay” the passage of tankers “by exercising its right to inspect every oil tanker” that passes through the Strait of Hormuz, these inspections and subsequent delays would maintain or contribute to higher oil prices, she said.
“While higher oil prices would benefit Iran and other oil-producing countries, they would further destabilize the European economy which is already in crisis.”
The US has imposed and engineered an array of sanctions against Iran to pressure the country over its nuclear energy program, which Washington, Israel and some of their allies claim may include a military aspect.
Iran dismisses such allegations, arguing that as a committed signatory to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and a member of the International Atomic Energy Agency, it has the right to use the nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.
“Demonstrably, although Europe is a major trade partner of the United States, the US does not concern itself with Europe’s well-being when it comes to executing its foreign policy,” Sepahpour said.
“This should come as no surprise, especially since the United States sacrifices its own national interest to promote the Israeli agenda and that of the military industrial complex. But this does not explain why Europe would shoot itself in the foot at a time when its economical woes have passed the crisis point,” the author concluded.