Why Saudis Could Not Prevent Attack

Why Saudis Could Not Prevent Attack
Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman has explained why the Kingdom couldn't prevent the attack seen on its energy infrastructure last month in an interview on CBS' 60 minutes program.

Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman (MBS) has explained why the Kingdom couldn’t prevent the attack seen on its energy infrastructure last month in an interview on CBS’ 60 minutes program, which was published on CBS’ website on Sunday.

“Saudi Arabia is almost the size of a continent. It is bigger than all of Western Europe,” MBS told 60 minutes interviewer Norah O’Donnell.

“We have 360 degrees of threats. It’s challenging to cover all of this fully,” MBS added.

In the interview, the Saudi Crown Prince noted that the attack didn’t hit the heart of the Saudi energy industry, but rather the heart of the global energy industry.

“It disrupted 5.5 percent of the world’s energy needs. The needs of the U.S. and China and the whole world,” MBS stated.

Last month, Torbjorn Soltvedt, principal MENA analyst at Verisk Maplecroft, said the risk of further high-impact attacks against Saudi energy infrastructure is high.

“For Saudi Arabia, the bottom line is that the risk of further serious attacks will persist even if the situation does not escalate,” Soltvedt said in a report sent to Rigzone on September 19.

“Only a significant reduction in regional tensions or a neutralization of Iran’s asymmetrical capabilities can meaningfully reduce the threat level. Unfortunately, prospects for either are poor,” he added.

Bloomberg reported yesterday that Saudi Aramco has fully restored crude output following the attack. Saudi Aramco President and CEO Amin Nasser had previously announced that the company’s production capacity would be fully restored by the end of September. 

To see analyst reaction on the attack, click here. To contact the author, email andreas.exarheas@rigzone.com


Generated by readers, the comments included herein do not reflect the views and opinions of Rigzone. All comments are subject to editorial review. Off-topic, inappropriate or insulting comments will be removed.

Pedantic Pete  |  October 04, 2019
Not so accurate - almost the size of a continent. The facts are - Australia is the smallest continent over 7.5 million sq km - Saudi is 2.15m sq km so less than 30% of the smallest!
Rudolf Huber  |  October 02, 2019
Do the same analysis for shale oil and gas in the US, a country far bigger than Europe with a large customer to the south and no credible threat for thousands of miles. If Saudi Arabia can be disrupted so easily, it's maybe better to focus on other regions for the world's energy needs. Shale has not pulled all its tricks yet.
Younes  |  October 02, 2019
Saudi spend $billions from USA for it's defense but still need to be protected by USA. You Cannot win an unfair war against Yemenite people..
Uncle John  |  October 02, 2019
API and others are stating the USA has been independent of foreign oil since 2006. Also at which time the USA surpassed Saudi in annual production and has since. Yet, the USA "needs are threatened" with this and future attacks?How so?
Brian Scott  |  October 01, 2019
The Abqaiq refinery, prior to last month's attack, was valued at between $ 17 - 32 Billion. Replacing it entirely would cost over $ 70 Billion today. .
T.J. Ross  |  October 01, 2019
Saudi Arabia is engaged in an active war, and also has known enemies in the area. Their general risk of attack is high. It is not necessary to defend every square mile of their territory, but you may expect they would have extra defences on key infrastructure and strategic targets ?
Stephen Archer  |  October 01, 2019
They couldn't defend against the attack is far simpler than "360 degree" geography. The Saudis have no respect for the Yemani people, it's near impossible to prevent against someone you don't respect.