Afshon Ostovar, Johns Hopkins University | January 10, 2012
Iran's threat to close the Hormutz strait is real; it has the capability to block oil supplies in the region, albeit temporarily. ++ The Iranians have designed asymmetric tactics to effectively challenge preponderant US force at sea. ++ Disrupting maritime shipping in the Gulf is an outcome no one would like to see. ++ Closing the strait would not only be seen as an act of war by the US but would galvanize regional and international opinion against Iran. ++ Even though tensions are acute, the likelihood of an Iranian instigated war is still distant.