Breaking the buck

Whether or not it’s close to a nuclear weapon, it’s safe to say Iran isn’t exactly a best buddy to the U.S. And it’s showing us there are more ways to swipe at one’s enemies than shooting at them:

Major crude producer Iran has completely stopped carrying out its oil transactions in dollars, Oil Minister Gholam Hossein Nozari said on Saturday, labeling the greenback an “unreliable” currency.

“At the moment selling oil in dollars has been completely halted, in line with the policy of selling crude in non-dollar currencies,” Nozari was quoted as saying by the ISNA news agency.

“The dollar is an unreliable currency, considering its devaluation and the oil exporters’ losses,” he added.

The world’s fourth-largest oil exporter, Iran has massively reduced its dependence on the dollar over the past year in the face of U.S. pressures on its financial system.

Iran has reduced its assets in dollars held in foreign banks and urged OPEC to take collective action to price oil in other currencies such as the euro, instead of the U.S. currency which is used across the world at present.

The decline of the dollar, which has weakened considerably against the euro and other currencies in the past 12 months, has affected the revenues of OPEC members because most of them price and sell their oil exports in the U.S. currency.

Losing preeminence in oil transactions will do nothing to help the dollar’s current woes. And Iran will actually profit from sticking the knife in further. Now THAT’S a use of non-military national power worthy of Sun Tzu…

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