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Opinion
Chris Bryant

Suez Shows Civilization Is More Vulnerable Than We Think

Choke points imperil global supply chains, and the remedies aren’t simple or cheap.

Still stuck.

Still stuck.

Source: Suez Canal Authority

A gust of wind was all it took to bring global container flows and oil shipments to a halt. The errant container ship that blocked the Suez canal this week has cut off a route that handles more than 10% of international trade.  

Part of this situation was simply unfortunate: Egypt has expanded parts of the canal to enable two-way traffic and accommodate larger carriers. The Ever Given ship went off course and got stuck in part of the waterway that’s still narrow.