iran politics saudi arabia saudi aramco

‘Unquestionably Sponsored By Iran’: The Saudis Have Some Debris They’d Like You To Scope Out

“We are working right now to share the information that we have".

As scheduled, the Saudi defense ministry held a press conference on Wednesday to present the results of the kingdom’s “investigation” into the attacks on Abqaiq and Khurais that crippled 50% of Aramco’s production capacity last weekend.

They brought along some “Iranian-made” drones and missiles or, for the skeptics among you, some stage props.

The attacks were “unquestionably sponsored by Iran”, the ministry said, with debris splayed about like some kind of war-themed modern art installation.

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The Saudis called the wreckage “undeniable” evidence of Iranian aggression, adding that a total of 25 drones and missiles were deployed in the attacks which, contrary to Houthi claims, were launched from the north, not from Yemen.

Turki al-Maliki cited “Iran’s efforts” to obscure flight paths, but said “data analysis of the attack sites indicate weapons of Iranian origin”.

All of that echoes Mike Pompeo’s Saturday tweet, delivered with remarkable rapidity and couched in very definitive terms considering how little time had elapsed since the strikes. Due primarily to the Trump administration’s massive credibility deficit (and also to a generalized mistrust of the Saudis) Pompeo’s claims have been a source of continual skepticism in the days since the attacks.

 

“We are working right now to share the information that we have from the data, from the chips, with the United Nations experts”, al-Maliki went on to say.

Iran on Tuesday again denied being directly responsible, but praised the Houthis for carrying out the attacks. As ever, it’s worth noting that false flag theories need to explain why the Houthis continue to insist on claiming the attacks and why Tehran continues to brag about their success on behalf of their Yemeni proxy. (Quds commander Qasem Soleimani tweeted a cryptic celebration hours after the strikes on Saturday.)

Read more: Iran Calls Aramco Attacks ‘Warning’ From Houthis, Denies Role In ‘9/11 For Saudi Arabia’

Pompeo was set to meet with Crown Prince Mohammed in Jeddah on Wednesday and the US is said to be preparing a declassified version of its own intelligence for public release.

Fears of imminent retaliatory strikes on Iran were allayed a bit on Wednesday when Trump announced “substantial” new sanctions in a morning tweet. It’s at least possible that means the administration is clinging to the idea that sanctions are preferable to military action when it comes to “changing Iran’s behavior” (as Pompeo is fond of putting it).

Of course, there’s really not much left for the administration to sanction – we’ve reached Spinal Tap territory at this juncture (“These sanctions go to ’11′”).

Suffice to say the public has already decided what they want to believe with regard to the attacks on Abqaiq and Khurais, so none of this is likely to make much of a difference.

That the Houthis continue to insist not only on having perpetrated the attacks, but on their intention to stage similar strikes in the future, means the only real question here is whether anybody can come up with stone, cold proof that Iran attacked the Saudis directly, because that’s when the various “proxy” wars morph into direct, sectarian conflict between Riyadh and Tehran.


 

17 comments on “‘Unquestionably Sponsored By Iran’: The Saudis Have Some Debris They’d Like You To Scope Out

  1. Jan Veenstra

    Saudi civilian targets were hit. Interestingly, still not a single report on human casualties. The Saudi civilian targets in Yemen have killed and maimed thousands of civilians.

    If one really has to chose between Shia Iran and Sunni Saudi, the choice isn’t very difficult.

    • Well, of course. But that’s not what’s being questioned here. It’s not a matter of “did the US back the wrong horse a long time ago?” or “is MBS a butcher responsible for untold human suffering in Yemen”? Obviously, the answer to those questions is “Yes” and “Yes”.

      This is a simple question of “Did MBS blow up 50% of his own oil production in order to engineer a pretext for the US or the Saudis to strike Iran?” If you’re going to answer “Yes” to that question, then you have to explain why the Houthis keep taking credit for it, and why Tehran keeps praising the attack even as they deny they were directly responsible.

      The only way to reconcile those things is to posit an increasingly complicated conspiracy theory, which, while always possible, seems unlikely.

      • Next quarter’s EPS is gonna fetch ARAMCO a fat IPO valuation. Just in time to get all their money up front and pass the peak oil risk onto the unwitting investment public

        • except that by most accounts, this reduced the value of the Aramco IPO by highlighting the risk of attacks on the company’s crown jewel. that’s coming from some of the banks who are actually tipped to run it.

    • Lance Manly

      Sunni Saudi

      KSA has a sizable (20%) and highly repressed Shia minority https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shia_Islam_in_Saudi_Arabia Strangely right in the middle of its oil producing region, the legendary Ghawar.

  2. “Sponsored by Iran” seems a different and weaker claim than “carried out by Iran”.

  3. Real answer is I think this is all an attempt to muddy the water…which by the way is a tactic typical of all the players mentioned above ….including US

  4. The US should not choose between Sunni and Shia. We should play them off against one another to our best advantage. Neither of those religions, as practiced by their leading governmental proponents in the Middle East, share our values at all.

  5. Scotty@thehelm

    Re: “share the information that we have from the data, from the chips”

    Not sure how intact those chips will be, but I assume the cooling fans protected them and provided great stability during impact. The flight path data may explain why the holes in those domes seemed to be from the West?

  6. Exercise extreme skepticism regarding possible false flag of “evidence” and media spin purporting that this attack was launched from Iran. Assuming Houthis did launch from Yemen, then Iran is no more to blame for the attack than the USA is is to blame for the entire humanitarian crisis in Yemen executed with USA weaponry provided to the Saudi Kingdom. It is called a proxy war.

    • I am also curious to know extent of the damage. Zero up close photos seen by myself so far. Anyone else see? Suspect not huge warheads & more smoke than damage. Perhaps the images of 4 streams of smoke is most persuasive method of exaggerating the damage done to suit western media agenda?

      • Also amazing that Iranian drones appear more accurate than USA cruise missiles launched with less success against Syrian airfield. Are supposed to believe that Iran has better technology? How many drones launched and how many did what kind of damage?

  7. If Pompeo had other evidence that the missiles came from Iran but couldn’t elaborate, it could mean that the eyes in the sky picked up the heat trail but are to remain unknown entities to the Iranians, Russians etc.. That would normally mean there should have been an early warning and possibly an immediate response. That didn’t happen. Maybe it wasn’t our eye-in-the-sky?

    • If you saw heat trails headed south what would you have recommended? If notified what would/could the Saudis have done differently?

      • Lots of big “IFs” that fit agenda of aggression on Iran. Ask why Iran would directly attack SA when USA neocons desperately look for excuses to attack that country. Same conundrum of why would Assad “gas his own people” after Obama declared it a red line not to be crossed. There are no USA “humanitarian wars”. They are planned strategic wars that use the media to manufacture consent. Be suspicious of claims that the facts can not be shown due to “national security” concerns. Intelligence services are known purveyors of misinformation/propaganda.

  8. Pompeo is an ass-hat.

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