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Senator Lindsay Graham, a notable hawk in foreign policy, has called for bombing Iranian refineries in retaliation for the country’s supposed involvement in the Hamas attack on Israel this weekend.
Speaking to the media on Monday, Graham said that if there was another attack by groups affiliated with Iran, the United States should “destroy Iran’s oil infrastructure”.
He went on to say that it was “now time for us to consider with our friends in Israel to hit Iran's oil economy,” as quoted by the Washington Examiner.
“If there's an escalation of this war, I am urging the Biden administration and the Israelis to jointly come up with a plan to destroy Iran's oil infrastructure,” the senator said.
“Without oil, they have no money. Without money, the terrorism loses its biggest benefactor. Everybody talks about Iran being responsible. Talk is cheap. It is now time to make them pay a price.”
In fact, the Israeli Defence Forces have said there was no evidence of Iran being involved in the Hamas attacks from this weekend that prompted Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to declare war on the group.
The U.S. State Department has also avoided pointing the finger at Iran for now, although the Wall Street Journal reported the attacks were planned with Iranian participation, citing unnamed sources.
“If this war escalates and you try further to destroy the Jewish state, you're going to be out of the oil business. They have fixed targets that are easy to hit,” Graham also said.
Iran has denied its involvement in the attack while reiterating its support for Palestine.
“Iran unwaveringly stands in solidarity with Palestine; however, it is important to note that Iran is not involved in Palestine’s response, as these actions are solely determined by the Palestinians themselves,” the country’s Mission to the UN said in a statement Monday.
An escalation of the conflict is one of the possible scenarios in the immediate future, leaving oil markets on edge and oil prices elevated. On Monday, the news of the Hamas attack sent oil prices soaring but they quickly retreated.
Uncertainty remains heightened as clashes between Hamas and the Israeli army continue.
By Charles Kennedy for Oilprice.com
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Charles is a writer for Oilprice.com