It is absolutely essential that we keep some level of stability in the region, to keep the oil markets stable. When we look to the Kuwait conflict, we find that cutting off 4 million barrels of oil per day caused our US gas prices to double.
As Iran continues to saber rattle, we cannot ignore the possibility that the Strait of Hormuz could at some point be closed, cutting off 16 million barrels of oil per day, causing gas prices to quadruple. With prices between $10-$16 per gallon, our entire economy would likely collapse within 30 days.
In a recent report issued by the CNA’s Military Advisory Board, they discuss what should be taken into consideration when we think about national security. This is an excerpt from that report.
“As former military commanders, our views have been shaped by our missions and military deployments. For our study, we considered a suite of broad categories often used by defense and foreign policy experts when assessing potential national security threats. These include:
Economic security: A healthy economy suggests the nation is able to provide sustenance for its population, and can provide a level of goods and services that is culturally consistent with what its population has come to expect. In national security discussions, the growth and health of the nation’s economy is key.
Military security: A nation’s military should be able to protect its borders and citizens (and its interests abroad) from physical threats. A contemporary view of this may also include protection from cyber and other transnational threats.
Political/Geopolitical stability: Political stability involves ensuring internal order and governance, so that major institutions can function continuously and effectively. Geopolitical stability involves healthy relationships with the community of nations, so the nation can thrive in a global economy.
Environmental security: An environmentally secure nation can have confidence that its land, water, air, and natural resources will remain healthy and accessible. When ecological systems are degraded, negatively affecting water supplies, food production, livelihood, and basic shelter requirements—the risks to security climb.”
It is essential to our national security that we continue to wean ourselves off of foreign resources. We also feel that it is crucial that we only send troops into harm’s way when it is absolutely necessary. If we can avoid some of that necessity through good energy policy, we see that as well worth investing in, as every life is important.