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The Iraqi representative to the Arab League has called for using oil as a weapon to get the US to stop backing Israel in their current war against Hamas.


Iraq's representative to the Arab League said on Friday that Arab states should use oil as a weapon to put pressure on the United States and Israel over the attacks on Gaza.

"Iraq will invite (Arab) ministers to use the weapon of oil, with the aim of asserting real pressure on the United States and whoever stands with Israel," Qais al-Azzawy told reporters in Cairo on Friday.

"The economic weapon is the strongest one to be put into effect now, to assure of standing by the Palestinian people, in light of there being no military power that can stand in the face of Israel at the present time."

The last oil embargo in 1973 caused a recession and led to stagnation as oil price shocks worked their way through western economies. That is not likely to happen this time because of an increase in our own supplies, and the fact that we get much more of our imported oil from Canada and Mexico - two nations not likely to join a boycott.Our imports from the Middle East  have dropped by a third since then.

But if the Arabs are serious about stopping the sale of oil to Israel's supporters, they can still disrupt supplies and cause a speculation bubble that would raise the price substantially. Still, it is not likely the Arabs would agree to a boycott because they know it wouldn't work and would lose billions in the process.

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