How Successful is Al-Qaeda's Strategy of Depriving the West of Essential Oil?

(Institute for Contemporary Affairs/Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs)Mordechai Abir - Developments in Saudi Arabia and Iraq should cause oil prices to decline further and to reach $30-35 a barrel. The bombing of three pipelines in southern Iraq by al-Qaeda terrorists led to the temporary stoppage of all Iraqi oil exports, but this Shi'ite region is hostile to al-Qaeda's Sunni Wahhabi militants. � � In Saudi Arabia, the many Muslim casualties caused after the May 2003 bombings alienated the majority of conservative Saudis and has largely isolated the al-Qaeda mujahidin. Aramco's two new Saudi fields (al-Qatif and Abu Safah) are about to come on line and will initially produce about 500,000 b/d. Al-Qaeda's strategy to undermine the Western economy by hitting Persian Gulf oil production is unlikely to succeed as long as Iraq's Shi'ite majority cooperates with U.S. authorities and the new regime in Baghdad.

2004-06-24 00:00:00

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