Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, July 2022
Bandar Algaloud / Saudi Royal Court / Reuters

On October 5, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its ten partner states agreed to slash oil production by two million barrels per day. The decision was at once predictable and shocking. It was predictable because OPEC+, under the leadership of Saudi Arabia, had previously telegraphed plans to reduce oil production. But it was shocking because Saudi Arabia and the United States are close security partners, and top U.S. officials had made repeated personal pleas for the Saudis to keep production up. Many of these officials had hoped that the Saudi government would cooperate, especially in light of

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