-------- Original Message --------
Subject: RE: Texas Reporter
Date: Tue, 15 Nov 2011 23:04:55 -0500
From: Gary Hufbauer

Gardner, ... The United States indeed could sanction the Iranian Central Bank, and that would cause enormous disruption to the country.  But how would China, India and other Asian countries react -- countries that depend on Iranian oil?  They might well continue to do business with the Iranian Central Bank. To be blunt, they don't agree with US sanctions against Iran.  What could the US do to interrupt these financial flows?  I feel confident that that the US has the technical capability to disrupt encrypted wire transfers between central banks (and between other banks and financial institutions).  However, not too long ago, the Pentagon declared that cyber attacks of this sort are "acts of war".  You can be the judge whether the US would want to engage in such acts against Iran, and thus indirectly against China, India, and at least a few other countres.  --Regards, Gary Hufbauer

6:05 pm, Nov. 16, 2011:

The course of action outlined by Governor Perry ensures severe tensions with China, India and other Asian importers of Iranian oil.  If successful in cutting off Iranian oil exports, the action could drive the price of oil above $150/bbl.  The Iranians might blink.  They might not.  --Gary