Why Sanctions Are Not Going to Work
News Commentary – August 5, 2010
There has been much talk recently about whether the imposition of more ‘muscular sanctions’ on Iran will deter it from its alleged pursuit of nuclear weapons.
Whether or not Iran even has a nuclear weapons program is highly debatable of course. Israel and its agents in the Western media continue to make such claims: just as they once did about Saddam Hussein and his Weapons of Mass Destruction.
You may remember all those stories about Saddam, his secret programs and his diabolical designs? Only after the invasion of Iraq did it become apparent that they were utterly unfounded.
So perhaps we should be wary of similar claims about Iran’s nuclear ambitions. Especially when they come from Israel – which itself possesses a large undeclared nuclear arsenal – or any of its lackeys in the corporate media, of which there are many.
Putting aside the question of whether it even has a nuclear weapons program however, President Obama has already acknowledged that Iran may not yield to sanctions alone.
Although, Obamas says, Iran may be more open to approach after Ramadan we think it unlikely. Trying to isolate Iran simply won’t work because too many emerging economies are willing to trade with it, even if the West isn’t.
This has been further emphasised by the fact that non-oil exports from Iran rose 31% from March 21 to July 21, 2010. This occurred despite the imposition of sanctions.
Moreover, China has now signalled that it will not be dictated to over its trade ties with Tehran.
China is already Iran’s biggest trading partner while Tehran is China’s third biggest oil supplier.
Given that its continued economic growth is dependent to a large extent on Iranian gas and oil, it will be difficult to persuade China to cut back its trade with Iran.
All of which points to the likelihood that sanctions imposed by the West alone will not be enough to isolate Iran.
The Iranians know this, hence their defiance.
Does Obama know this or any of his advisors? Or are they just going through the motions of pursuing peaceful means? Until having played out that charade they can propose other, more forceful options?
Unfortunately, this is all too reminiscent of the run-up to the Iraq war: the same allegations about Weapons of Mass Destruction, the same debates about sanctions and their effectiveness.
Have we learned nothing? History is repeating itself right before our eyes but unfortunately Iran is not Iraq and this time when the shooting starts it will be altogether bloodier.
Last updated 07/08/2010