US warns Iran over blocking oil strait

2012-01-13 10:11

Washington - The United States has used a secret channel to warn Iran's leaders against closing the strategic Strait of Hormuz, saying that doing so would provoke a US response, the New York Times reported.

Iran has threatened to close the narrow and strategic waterway - a chokepoint for one fifth of the world's traded oil - in the event of a military strike or the severe tightening of international sanctions.

The New York Times, citing unnamed US officials, said late on Thursday that the White House has communicated to Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei that closing the strait would be a "red line" and provoke a response.

The officials did not provide further details about the covert communication channel, except to say that it was separate from the Swiss government, through which the United States occasionally relays messages to Iran's leaders.

The United States and its allies have stepped up increasingly harsh sanctions on Iran over its nuclear enrichment program, which they have charged is part of a secret drive to develop nuclear weapons.

Iran has insisted its nuclear program is entirely peaceful and vowed to retaliate against any strike on its facilities.

Tensions have flared in recent days following the killing of an Iranian nuclear scientist in a bombing Tehran has blamed on US and Israeli intelligence services. US officials have denied any involvement in the attack.

Iran's Revolutionary Guards have announced new naval maneuvers in the Strait of Hormuz within the next few weeks, underlining Tehran's threat to close the narrow channel between the Persian Gulf and the Arabian Sea.

Washington has meanwhile sent a second aircraft carrier to waters just outside the Gulf, and a third is on its way.

  • Brent - 2012-01-13 10:36

    Will this make obama a war president? Just like bush?

      Hotkop - 2012-01-13 10:53

      Well, his decisions must be aproved by the senate. If they don't aprove, it won't happen. Different than our system.

      Brent - 2012-01-13 12:03

      didnt he forcfully bypass senate recently?

  • Hotkop - 2012-01-13 10:43

    But they said this allready. Is this news?

  • Newsmonger - 2012-01-13 10:43

    I used to think that the usa was a great contry looking back at my youth but as I have gotten older I have come to realise the 'world bully that they are'. The fact of the matter is they 99% still have nukes and I see no reason why other countries cannot keep nukes to protect their civilians. Although this is a catch 22 I find it rather rude they dictating the nuke saga since they where the only country to have used nukes. And amazingly again this is undoubtdly over oil -- sounds harsh but should there be problems I hope they get a taste of their own medicine. I have resided myself to the fact that if world war 3 comes to the table I hope taht the 'worlds strongest country' gets what it deserved a phat bomb!One of the few countries who can run their monetry system on thin air as their budget deficit is too high to even pay off the interest.(approx 300 trillion)So lets bully the oil trade to keep the dollar afloat. Here is to a royal F%k U America!!!

      cyanideandhappiness - 2012-01-13 10:56

      Newsmonger you're half right, but its not the American people or their country that are doing this. It is their controllers, the financial elite, the bildberg group, the "New World Order". They have done to the US exactly what they are doing here, implenting a corrupt and useless education system to dumb down the population while feeding them endlessly stupifying media so they continue to consume without thinking, so they do not get in the way. Its modern slavery. Its been done in so many countries. Implement a valueless monetary system, corrupt the education and government, implement police state systems through crime (RSA) and "Terrorism" (USA), continually crush freedoms and rights of the people while promoting a false freedom agenda, and basically loot the economy and its people of anything they can. The world is ruled by elites, and South Africa is in no better condition than the US, if not now, then soon...

      Graziella - 2012-01-13 11:48

      Orwells 1984 comes to mind! War is Peace and Ignorance is Strength!

      PeggySven - 2012-01-13 12:22

      @Newsmonger, $300 Trillion? Where did you get that figure from? The actual debt is $15,2 Trillion, rather a smaller amount. I agree however that Fiat money is not sustainable and never was, it is time to bring back the gold standard.

      Newsmonger - 2012-01-13 13:50

      @cynide Yeah really is sick to think it was an inside job. There are a lot of conspiry theories worth a look. Seems you are one of the people who might have watched the entire movie; Zeitgeist also watch the conspiracy : did we land on the moon( FYI - interesting). The basis of these movies seem to be coming to light although you do need to be rational when coming up with your own views. At least they are not fighting in the name of religion - here is where the world will end watch this space ..religion or reserves will spark ww3.More than likey by the USA, or they will make something happen for them to be on their 'ethical high horse'to bomb the crap out of some more innocent civilians and the odd %anker.

  • cyanideandhappiness - 2012-01-13 10:47

    The world wont end, but you can bet that this is very likely the precursor to another global war, with China and Russia aggressively insisting that the 'Allies' must leave Iran and Syria alone, you can bet that there will be some sore countries on both sides if this escalates into a conflict. But then again, this is all just part of the plan...

      Graziella - 2012-01-13 11:45

      We can only hope that a re-emergence of a multipolar world will curb America's worst excesses and that China's relative isolationism will keep her at home. We've seen the result of an unfettered, uni-polar world for the last 20 years and its not pretty. It'll only get worse if no one stands up to the US.

      Newsmonger - 2012-01-13 11:48

      @cyanideandhappiness - Agreed. Look my words are harsh and I do understand it is not the public at large but if you look at what has happened in the likes of Afgan, Iraq, Libya there will always be civilian deaths for the benifit of future generations (Or thats what the Usa would like us to belive ) I really do not believe they are fighting for the freedom of the masses...if they were why not attack Zim with that turd at the helm (No oil). I am so sick of the usa dictating; as I see it Nandoes got it wrong the world dictators and the most dangeroius is that of the usa - all they do is impose their wills on others making them no better. While I do appreciate the comments I can accept I sometimes type before thinking but the usa are not fighting for peoples benifit but their own.really is sick. May I ask do you belive 9/11 was orgastrated by their own government?

      cyanideandhappiness - 2012-01-13 12:58

      Yes, definately, all the evidence points to that event being a false flag attack, and everything that has happened since. I'm starting to discover that many people have picked up on that theory because its actually the only one that makes sense!

      keith.murphy.9638 - 2012-07-14 23:21

      China , Russia and Iran and maybe NKorea will join and they together will wipe the usa off the map and china will govern usa under a nother name as china is alrady over populated they need space on earth.

  • Moi - 2012-01-13 10:47

    Good to see they know how to keep a secret.

  • Dfs Major Sekomeng - 2012-01-13 11:09

    I wish God helps the world fight America for it is the devils continent. Nothing about that country is good, look at what they have done to this world. The secret will be known soon.

      Newsmonger - 2012-01-13 11:49

      dont worry dfs I'll give you your 2nd thumbs up!

  • Dfs Major Sekomeng - 2012-01-13 11:09

    I wish God helps the world fight America for it is the devils continent. Nothing about that country is good, look at what they have done to this world. The secret will be known soon.

  • Citizen - 2012-01-13 11:11

    The Americans can only stockpile weapons for so long then they need to use them, wars are expedient distributors and users of weapons. They can test, use and get rid of old weapons stockpiles while justifying the massive expenditure to congress for new weapons technology and such a massive percentage of annual GDP while the US citizens are broke..

      Graziella - 2012-01-13 11:41

      War is a racket!

      Barry - 2012-01-13 20:52

      War is profitable for the USA.

      Sharon Dreyer - 2012-01-14 06:49

      Indeed, when the US economy needs a boost they start a war, it's big business for them

  • ludlowdj - 2012-01-13 11:34

    Of course the west goes "YEEEES" and is happy that the Islamist is to be brought to heel, completely overlooking the fact that the UN guarantees the Iranian right to close any portions of the channel that fall within its territorial waters. As much as I find the American people to be some of the best in the world their government through their inaction has been allowed to become a tyrant and as some say the Anti-Christ. Irrespective of any hardships that the closing of the channel may bring it is not OK for the west to act illegally. The US government is of course aware that they are close to collapse and will effectively break every law in the book if it keeps them in power for a little longer. The American government is arguably the most dangerous threat to world peace the world has ever known and Obama for all the promises he made is little more than a puppet being directed and made to more by the elite he now protects.

      Graziella - 2012-01-13 11:43

      Rules are for the guidance of wise men but the strict obedience only of a fool.

      Newsmonger - 2012-01-13 11:52

      "arguably the most dangerous threat to world peace" - couldnt agree more!

      PeggySven - 2012-01-13 12:29

      @ ludlowdj. Sadly for Iran, the Straits are not in their territorial waters, but are in Saudi Arabia and Qatar's territorial waters. If Iran blocks the Straits, they will effectively be declaring war on these two countries. It then stands to reason that the aggressor in this instant is not the United States of America, but Iran.

      John - 2012-01-13 13:00

      @ludlowdj and @Peggy Sven The straits belong to Oman and Iran. There is a UN treaty governing the transit through the strait. Please read> and learn

      Warwick - 2012-01-13 13:40

      And if they do close off these straights, how long will SA survive with ni oil or if oil hits $300.00 per barrel. What will we do to keep our oil flowing. How long will we talk and plead before we have no more fuel.

      allcoveredinNinjas - 2012-01-13 15:49

      Block the strait and people will die .Not from war but the knock on effects , thats the reality of an integrated modern world the likes of the Iranian authorities need to get to grips with. China is realising very quickly their importance in the global community and that their close door policy is not sustainable and engaging the world has/will bring greater prosperity as well as greater criticism.

      Graziella - 2012-01-13 16:07

      Put sanction on Iran and millions of people will also die in that country, that's what happened in Iraq, for WHAT, so that the Iraq gives its oil concessions to US energy companies.

  • BA - 2012-01-13 12:54

    I think there are a lot of very immature, one-sided views of the world on this site. People seem to think that the USA is so bad, and by implication that there are good states out there. That is a childish way of looking at the world. Each nation acts in what it considers to be its best interests at the time, just as each human being does. Iran is a sworn and violent enemy of the USA at the current time. The USA is acting in its own interests to supress the power of Iran. Iran on the other hand has imperialistic ambitions. It wishes to increase its power and influence. Hence its aggressive and hostile attitude, especially in Syria and Lebanon. Its attitude to Israel is a manifestation of that. Turkey, Russia and China all have similar attitudes. They wish to increase and extend their power and influence. Each state is acting in its own people's best interests, or what the govt perceives its best interests to be. To criticize the US for doing something which every other state is doing is just simple-minded. It is not the US fault it wields greater power and if any other country had that amount of power it would act in the same, or a more violent, aggressive way.

      Nkululeko - 2012-01-13 16:12

      i agree fully. ppl forget that we distanced ourselves from his Holiness Dalai lama in the pursuit for economic prosperity. have we forgotten the injustices of the world?which is more irresponsible, america abandon it's objectives in the middle east and lose it's sovereignty to china or, acquiring 90% of the world's oil, like in the standard oil era, and counter china's stronghold by choking the economy( drop in supply) and keep it's sovereignty...? if there are fingers to be pointed, it should be at those whose criticize

  • Sinjoku - 2012-01-13 14:27

    @Graziella.....Yes I see your point their Leader shows a man of complete sane mind....NOT... He is the same Gadaffi / Sadam / Bin Laden and many others, Unfortunately so, but never the less, I would not even trust the likes of him with a stone in the hand let alone missiles or WMD's. Seems you Muedes might be the same person. Or atleast 1 of you is loyal companion to the other. That makes for an interesting observation on all your posts and his or hers.

      Graziella - 2012-01-13 14:37

      There are no crazy religious fundamentalists running Iran. Iran is run by elites who run it first and foremost for their own benefit. Religion is a justificatory fig-leaf for what they do (as it is everywhere) - a way of keeping the masses on side. Similarly Saudi Arabia is in theory a theocracy that has the Sharia as its constitution. Trust me, in reality, everything that happens there is assessed on one basic principle: "will this or will it not benefit the House of Saud". The people who run Iran will do whatever they think suits their interests best, and don't care very much about Islam. Communist countries are run for the benefit of the party elite, capitalist countries are run for the benefit of corporate elites. The ideologies that elites (whether communist, capitalist or Islamist) profess never get in the way of their pursuit of their own self-interest. Unless you understand this basic principle, you will fail to get how our world operates. "Mad mullahs" is just a propaganda term to keep simpletons from thinking too much about what their government is doing. The mullahs are self-interested elites whose actions are perfectly explicable and rational with respect to their desire to pursue their own self-interest.

      BA - 2012-01-13 14:43

      Graziella it looks like you plagiarized my post and have done a maasive about turn, because up until now you have been a harsh critic of the USA and a champion of muslim countries and China. Now all of a sudden you follow my observation - it shows up your inconsistent and illogical way of thinking.

      Graziella - 2012-01-13 14:58

      Sorry to dissapoint you BA, am just stating my observation and understanding of this conflict. The problem with people like you BA is that you belong to the same neocon school of thinking like Bush which demands that a person is "either with us or against us". If I am oppossed to US foreign policy, that doesn't necessarily mean that I support the Mullahs.

      BA - 2012-01-13 15:11

      No graziella, the problem with people like me is that we hate racist, Jew-hating, Holocaust-denying, biased people like you.

      Graziella - 2012-01-13 15:20

      @BA With all of my respect: Myth can't be a legal base to gain materialistic advantages. Myth may serve mysteries only. Those who suffer from related syndrome may have free, professional help.

      BA - 2012-01-13 15:33

      At graziella - I am glad you respect me, but it is not returned. By myth, are you again referring to your ridiculous, hateful, false belief that the Holocaust is a fiction made up by Jews for material gain? Is that once more your vicious, Jew-hating libel?

      Graziella - 2012-01-13 16:03

      It is tiring for me to comment more on this dead subject.

      BA - 2012-01-13 16:44

      Graziella - maybe for you, but not for me. I will never give up on this issue. Never.

      Barry - 2012-01-13 20:55

      @BA. Are you a bible cuddling Israeli Jew that hates Arabs, blacks ...any thing that is non jew ?

  • Sharon Dreyer - 2012-01-14 06:47

    How many countries is Iran at war with now and in the last 2 decades? Now compare that to how many countries the US is at war with and has been in the last 2 decades? Now tell me who is the more violent country? The US is looking for excuses to invade Iran

  • keith.murphy.9638 - 2012-07-14 23:24

    The bible says the beast in the west shall be conquered by the EAST.Obama with his big ears are the beast and the witch is Hilary

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