Reports of attacks Thursday in the Gulf of Oman against a Norwegian and a Japanese oil tanker signal a potentially significant increase of tensions in the Middle East among Iran, the United States, and the Gulf States. Washington should not let Iran off the hook, as Tehran is likely responsible for this inexcusable attack. At the same time, observers should recognize that the attack is a direct result of the Trump administration’s failing so-called maximum pressure strategy, which is aimed at bringing Iran back to the negotiating table with the United States but is instead leading the two countries to the brink of conflict.
Even though U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration lacks credibility, and there are certainly hawks inside the administration willing to inflate intelligence, Iran almost certainly carried out the attack. Iran has a history of conducting these types of operations—and reportedly conducted a similar attack just last month.
Read the full article in Foreign Policy.