While a cold war with China is working its way towards the inevitable, another situation is developing that could lead to physical clashes between Iran and the United States over the former’s attempts to ship fuel to Venezuela amid the collapse of its refining industry.
Millions of dollars of fuel are at stake and a geopolitical crisis for which a response against Iran is likely to be real this time around because it comes against the backdrop of global chaos, a US president in trouble ahead of November elections, and a renewed attempt to bring Maduro down.
Five Iranian oil tankers are on approach to Venezuela as we speak.
The situation between Venezuela and the US has intensified since an incident earlier this month when Maduro said his forces had captured 13 “terrorists” and killed 8 others in a failed incursion attempt, led by an American. Trump denied having supported any such operation to capture Maduro and put him on a plane, and a private security company run by a former Special Forces soldier ended up taking responsibility for the operation, referring to his men as “freedom fighters” acting when the government wouldn’t. But their funding came from somewhere. Maduro’s forces had infiltrated the group long before the operation and allowed it to proceed, then capturing and killing them in the process, and accusing opposition president Guaido of bankrolling the incursion, giving Washington any…