Simon Henderson is the Baker fellow and director of the Bernstein Program on Gulf and Energy Policy at The Washington Institute, specializing in energy matters and the conservative Arab states of the Persian Gulf.
Articles & Testimony
One obvious remedy involves asking Riyadh to end its production cutback, but any such request could be complicated by the administration’s recent friction with the crown prince.
When is a failed Iran-instigated attack on Saudi Arabian oil facilities a problem? Answer: When a new administration in Washington is trying to shift away from the Middle East and reduce reliance on oil. More succinctly, when the market is tight. In 2019, Iranian missiles and drones hit the Saudi oil processing plant at Abqaiq, where crude is initially cleaned so that it can be loaded onto tankers. The shockingly accurate attack temporarily halved Saudi exports. Yesterday’s attack in Dammam apparently hit only one oil storage tank. The nearby oil export terminal, which handles 15 percent of world supplies, was unscathed. Of course, as last time, Iran’s fingerprints of responsibility are a little blurred. The Houthi forces that control Yemen have claimed they did it, but truthfulness is not their strong suit...