GOP Rep. Says US Has NO Nat’l Security Interest in Tanker Attacks

‘America must stop being the world’s policeman on every corner of the planet…’

(Joshua Paladino, Liberty Headlines) Rep. Mo Brooks, R-AL, discouraged the American military from striking Iran in response to June 12 attacks on two Saudi Arabian oil tankers, a United Arab Emirates tanker, and a Norwegian tanker.

“America must stop being the world’s policeman on every corner of the planet,” Brooks said. “America must stop burning through our treasury and risking our American lives when we have no compelling national security interest in a dispute. ”

During a speech Thursday on the House floor, he said the United States would not be justified in unilateral military action.

A joint report from Norway, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates did not find that Iran conducted the attacks, though it said the “attacks were most likely carried out by a state actor.”


Only the United States and the United Kingdom have accused Iran of attacking the vessels.

Iran denied blame.

The report also concluded that “placement of the mines [was] consistent with intention to disable the mobility, but not physically destroy, each vessel.”

“Perhaps more evidence will persuade the international community that Iran orchestrated these tanker attacks. Perhaps not,” Brooks said. “Regardless of blame, there are other factors to consider…For example, what is America’s national security interest in these six attacked tankers?”

Neither the attacked tankers nor the oil onboard belonged to Americans.

Japan, Norway, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates own the tankers while the oil belongs to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

None of the oil onboard was headed to the United States.

Brooks said other countries have a “national security interest in these tanker attacks,” such as Japan and South Korea which “import roughly 80 percent of their oil from the Persian Gulf.” Indian imports 60 percent of its oil from the Persian Gulf, China 50 percent, and Western Europe 20 percent.

“Japan, South Korea, China, India and Western Europe all have a national security interest in keeping Persian Gulf oil shipping lanes open and are justified in using military force to defend those shipping lanes at their own risk and at their own cost,” Brooks said, adding that Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, and United Arab Emirates have the same right.

He said allies “shoulder their own share of military burdens,” though he said his stance could change if American allies request assistance or if Iran directly attacks “Americans or their property.”