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Trump Must React to the Attacks on Saudi Arabia. But a Quick Fix Won’t Be Enough.

Dennis Ross

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Washington Post

September 16, 2019


U.S. pressure has put Iran in a corner economically but not politically or militarily, so the Supreme Leader seems to believe there is little to lose unless Washington shows it will ease sanctions or launch strikes.

We might well be on the precipice of the first foreign policy crisis of the Trump administration. The president faces a real dilemma: He will not want oil prices to shoot up, and he will not want to get embroiled in a war with Iran. There are several steps he should take. First, it is good that he is prepared to open the strategic petroleum reserve. But the release needs to be significant, at least 100 million barrels, not only to hold down oil prices but to show the Iranians that we can prevent them from immediately squeezing the international community on oil supply...

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