Resistance Axis: is this a resurrected central line for evolving Middle Eastern troubles to move around?

 

Resistance Axis - Iran Israel conflict

In the State of the Union address in 2002, President George W Bush coined the phrase ‘axis of evil’, while associating it with three arch enemies of the US at that time – Iran, Iraq under Sadaam Hussain and North Korea.

In response, Iran defined its own counter-axis and named it, the ‘Axis of Resistance’, then shortened to Resistance Axis and identified itself and the militant groups that it openly supported as the rest of the life members.

Both the original phrase and its counter-version gradually lost its lustre in the sphere of global politics as the world faced more critical crises than mutual mud-slinging, coated in soundbites.

In the wake of a drone attack, in the early hours on Friday, against Israeli-owned tanker near Oman that resulted in the death of two crew members, the Iranian version of the phrase has been resurrected by the Iranian media, as being responsible for the attack.

The Iranian media, however, omitted Iran from the group, while identified just the militant groups as the members of the alliance.

Iranian foreign ministry, however, has denied the responsibility for the incident, something that Israel does not seem to buy at this stage.

Both the US and UK defence authorities are conducting an investigation into the incident in order to establish the facts, although an attack by a remote-controlled drone is widely suspected.

The attack on the ship, meanwhile, coincides with the Iranian move to opening a new terminal for its oil exports outside the Strait of Hormuz, which could potentially be a new flash point in the event of a major conflict breaking out in the region, involving the key players.

Both Iran and Israel have been conducting covert operation in the region and the attacks on the tankers are not unheard of; this is the first time an attack led to the death of crew members, though; the attacks on the ships docked at the ports of the UAE took place somewhat regularly in recent months.

In short, the attacks and counter attacks had been in the shadow of mutual hostilities – up until the incident in question.

The incident splashed prominently across the Saudi media too, because Saudi Arabia has been at the receiving end of drone attacks almost daily, while getting very little global attention.

The attack came just days before Iranian next president is going to take office; hanging by a thread, meanwhile, is the reality of reviving the JCPOA, 2015 Iranian nuclear deal.

The worrying development in the Middle East is something that analysts are going to focus on in the next few days, when the defence authorities of the US and UK come up with their own conclusions.

The evolving circumstances are going to have a direct impact on the crude oil markets - for multiple well-known reasons.

 

 

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