The World Takes Sides

Todd Moses
April 16, 2024

As Iran warns Israel and the U.S. on a counter-strike, BRICS members (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa, Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran, and the U.A.E) are siding with Iran while the G7 (Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the U.K. the U.S., and unofficially the E.U.) is behind Israel.

Inputs that matter: "We can't just pick and say, Iran is bad, but Russia is OK, and China is bad… They're all in this together," Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas), chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said Sunday on CBS's "Face the Nation."

  • The G7 explains that Iran, "with its actions, has further stepped toward the destabilization of the region and risks provoking an uncontrollable regional escalation."
  • British foreign minister David Cameron said he had "formally condemned [Iran's actions] in the strongest terms."
  • On Monday, the U.S. House of Representatives is set to vote on several bills toughening sanctions on Iran, including one aimed at reducing Chinese imports of Iranian crude oil.
  • Currently, 80% of Iranian oil goes to China.

The opportunity: U.S. President Joe Biden convened the Group of Seven (G7) to coordinate a rebuke of Iran for its aerial attack on Israel and to prevent a more comprehensive regional escalation.

  • After their video conference, the leaders issued a joint statement "unequivocally condemning in the strongest terms" the direct attack by Iran while expressing "our full solidarity and support to Israel" and reaffirming "our commitment towards its security."
  • The Jerusalem Post reports, "Saudi Arabia acknowledged that it had helped the newly forged regional military coalition — Israel, the United States, Jordan, the United Kingdom, and France — repel an Iranian attack against the Jewish state early Sunday morning."
  • "99% of the Iranian drones and missiles were destroyed before hitting their targets."

Zoom in: White House official John Kirby Sunday told ABC's "This Week" program on Sunday that the United States will continue to help Israel defend itself but does not want war with Iran.

  • Asked if the US would support retaliation from Israel in Iran, Kirby clarified that their "commitment is ironclad" to defending Israel and to "helping Israel defend itself."
  • "And as the president has often said, we don't seek a wider regional war. We don't seek a war with Iran. And I think I will leave it at that," Kirby added.

Between the lines: Russia belonged to what is now the G7 from 1998 through 2014 when members were known as the Group of Eight (G8), but it was suspended following its annexation of Ukraine's Crimea region.

  • BRICS began with a meeting of the leaders of China, India, and Russia on the margins of the 2008 G8 meeting in St. Petersburg.
  • In 2009, the group held its first official meeting, and in 2010, it included South Africa.
  • During 2024, BRICS expanded to include Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran, and the U.A.E.

Follow the money: Politico reports, "House Republicans were planning a coordinated legislative offensive on the Department of Energy's efficiency standards in a slate of bills to be voted on this week. But Iran's attack on Israel this weekend in retaliation for Israel bombing an Iranian consulate in Syria prompted House leaders to change course."

  • "If it is not stopped, the administration's plans will impose burdensome and costly efficiency mandates for virtually every appliance in your home," said House Energy and Commerce Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.) at a recent hearing.
  • "This is real. This is actually what Republicans are preparing to spend [time on] next week on in the House," said Rep. Don Beyer (D-Va.) on X, formerly known as Twitter, last Thursday.
  • Oil prices fell more than 1% on Monday after rising ahead of Iran's airstrike. West Texas Intermediate crude futures were trading around $85 a barrel, while Brent futures slipped toward the $89 mark.

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