New developments in Saudi Arabia and Iran, related to the oil market, may precipitate the emergence of a new battleground in the rivalry between the two countries. This article seeks to investigate where the Saudi-Iran confrontation may lead and whether it could result in the death of OPEC (Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries).
In a Greater Middle East in which one country after another has been plunged into chaos and possible failed statehood, Iran and Saudi Arabia have been bedrock exceptions to the rule. Iran, at the moment, remains so, but the Saudi royals, increasingly unnerved, have been steering their country erratically into the region's chaos.
Sunday, April 17 was the designated moment. The world's leading oil producers were expected to bring fresh discipline to the chaotic petroleum market and spark a return to high prices. But far from restoring the old oil order, the meeting ended in discord, driving prices down again and revealing deep cracks in the ranks of global energy producers.