Abdullah Azzam Al Qaeda Brigade Attacks Oil Tanker in Strait of Hormuz
It has been a long time coming, luckily, this time, it failed due to its amateurish approach. Still, the Abdullah Azzam Brigade, responsible for many attacks in Eqypt and Sinai, and part of the Al Qaeda group, claimed it had made the attempt on the Japanese oil tanker, 1100 ft long, M. Star not far from Qatar in the Persian Gulf.
The Strait of Hormuz at its narrowest is only 21 miles and yet through it, 17 million barrels of oil for the world moves through it daily. This 20% of the world's daily oil needs. Somaili pirates have been attacking merchant ships at the entrance near Oman. The US Navy's 5th fleet is there because it is vital to keep open. The attack occurred on July 29, when the Star hit something that exploded, which only dented the wall of the ship greatly, but otherwise, continued to port. The Azzam brigade claimed that a suicide bomber somehow steered the bomb into the ship.
Had this attack been a success, massive amounts of oil would spill into the ocean, creating chaos, not to mention the fear element of more terrorist attacks upon a fragile oil shipping line that can easily be turned into a closed ocean either from Iran, making attacks on tankers or terrorists, or both. Knock out only a few tankers in the narrowest point would cripple world oil shipping and markets. Even with this failed attempt, oil marker prices jumped. The cleanup alone of such attacks would make recovery prolonged and make Arab oil producers in the area very nervous because of Iran. The impact on the West would be felt greatly and gas would jump in price very high.
The West dodged a bullet this time. It really is only a matter of time until the worse does happen.