The lifting of sanctions is an unequivocal victory for Iran, sealing its regional position, and leaving its nuclear capability intact
by Alexander Mercouris for Russia Insider.
Confirmation that international sanctions on Iran have at last been lifted is unequivocally a victory for Iran.
The sanctions should never have been imposed in the first place.
As I said in April last year in an article I wrote for Sputnik, the evidence suggests Iran did indeed once have a nuclear weapons programme.
That programme was not however intended as a threat to the US or Israel or – needless to say – the EU.
The Iranian leadership is fully aware that a nuclear weapons programme targeting those countries is far more likely to provoke an attack on Iran than to deter one, and that Iran might not survive such an attack.
Rather Iran’s nuclear programme was intended to deter a nuclear attack from Iran’s main regional rival – Saddam Hussein’s Iraq – which is known to have had a nuclear weapons programme in the decade preceding the 1991 Gulf War.
Having fought a bitter war against Saddam Hussein between 1980 and 1988, Iran could not afford to let him acquire nuclear weapons whilst being itself disarmed. It is entirely understandable therefore that the Iranian leadership sought to counter Saddam Hussein’s nuclear weapons programme with a nuclear weapons programme of their own.
All the evidence however points to the Iranian nuclear weapons programme being significantly downgraded in the decade following Saddam Hussein’s defeat in 1991, and then having been abandoned completely following his overthrow in 2003.
Not only is that the conclusion all the evidence points to, but it is also the opinion of the US intelligence community, which in 2007 publicly confirmed that Iran was no longer pursuing a nuclear weapons programme.
Even the US government does not dispute this. Here is what US Secretary of State Kerry had to say about the Iranian nuclear programme in an interview with Reuters in August 2015:
“Our judgment is that clearly there was a period where Iran was chasing a nuclear weapon. We have no doubt about that. In 2003, we found them red-handed with facilities they shouldn’t have had and material they shouldn’t have had………..They have not pursued a weapon – to our best judgment and to the judgment of all of our allies, they haven’t pursued a weapon per se since that period of time.”
It is therefore nothing short of bizarre that US demands Iran discontinue its nuclear weapons programme took off precisely after Iran had – as the US knew – abandoned its nuclear weapons programme.
Not only did Iran face a succession of ever more threatening demands to abandon a nuclear programme the US knew it had already abandoned, but these demands were combined with ever harsher sanctions, culminating in the most comprehensive package of sanctions of all, imposed on Iran as recently as 2012.
These demands and these sanctions were accompanied by a constant drumbeat of propaganda against Iran.
Its leaders were called religious fanatics and sponsors of terrorism. They were accused of genocidal and megalomaniac plans there is no evidence they ever had.
Iran was accused of plotting aggression against neighbouring countries, though there is no evidence of this, and though the single greatest act of aggression carried out in the recent history of the Middle East was Saddam Hussein’s attack on Iran – which the Western powers and the Arab states supported.
Meanwhile the country itself was represented as a repressive and reactionary medieval theocracy, which – for all its problems – no one who knows anything of the country believes it is.
All this happened alongside continuous threats of military action, which – according to some reports – on more than one occasion came dangerously close to happening, and which the same reports say only failed to happen because of the strong opposition of the US military.
Why this relentless pressure and threats against a country for supposedly having a nuclear weapons programme which in reality – as everyone knew – it had stopped having?
The short answer is that the US and its regional allies – Israel and Saudi Arabia – became alarmed at the influence Iran achieved in the region following the US’s overthrow of Saddam Hussein.
Whatever the US’s intentions when it overthrew Saddam Hussein, a regionally dominant position for a politically independent and (relatively) democratic Iran was definitely not one of them.
That however was precisely what Saddam Hussein’s overthrow brought about.
The defeat of Israel by Iran’s ally Hezbollah in 2006 was for Washington – and Riyadh and Jerusalem – the final straw.
The result was the relentless campaign launched against Iran in connection with a nuclear weapons programme everyone knew no longer existed.
Inevitably, in order to give some coherence to this campaign, it escalated into a demand that Iran abandon any attempt to develop an independent nuclear capability at all – whether it be for military or civilian use.
That in essence was what the demand had become over the last few years.
Not surprisingly Iran rejected this demand – which would have required it to stop doing what it had every legal right to do – as would any other country that was faced with such a demand but which valued its political independence.
In the meantime, as the pressure on Iran grew, governments and people in the Middle East who were seen as either actually or potentially allied to Iran – including the Syrian government of President Bashar Al-Assad, the democracy movements in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, and the Houthi movement in Yemen, also came under attack.
The result is a Middle East racked by instability and war.
The lifting of sanctions against Iran represents the failure of this policy.
It has not happened because Iran has made concessions over the state of its nuclear programme.
Those concessions Iran did make do not compromise Iran’s ability to develop an independent nuclear capability – which is all Iran has been doing for many years now, and which was the red line it was not prepared to cross. If the US had wanted an agreement along these lines, it could have had it long ago.
It has happened for two other reasons
The first reason is that Iran did not buckle under the pressure.
Far from giving up its nuclear programme, it responded by escalating it to the point where it had mastered the entire nuclear fuel cycle – thereby showing to the US that there was nothing the US could do to stop it.
The second reason was that in 2014 the great Eurasian powers – Russia and China – finally called a stop to the sanctions policy.
The key event was rumours that began to spread in the autumn of 2014 that Russia and Iran were close to finalising an “oil for goods” swap deal, and that Russia was reconsidering its previous decision not to supply S300 missiles to Iran.
This together with fears that China was looking for ways to provide financing to Iran through the new financial institutions it was setting up, caused alarm in Washington that the entire sanctions regime was about to collapse.
Of particular concern for Washington was the fear that following the Russian and Chinese moves it would be impossible for the US to keep its European allies in line by persuading them to continue with a sanctions policy they could no longer see the point in.
The result was that when Iran offered the US a face-saving way out in the form of the present agreement, the US had no option but to agree.
Here is what Secretary of State Kerry had to say about all this in the same interview with Reuters I quoted from above:
“But if everybody thinks, “Oh, no, we’re just tough; the United States of America, we have our secondary sanctions; we can force people to do what we want.” I actually heard that argument on television this morning. I’ve heard it from a number of the organisations that are working that are opposed to this agreement. They’re spreading the word, “America is strong enough, our banks are tough enough; we can just bring the hammer down and force our friends to do what we want them to.”
Well, look – a lot of business people in this room. Are you kidding me? The United States is going to start sanctioning our allies and their banks and their businesses because we walked away from a deal and we’re going to force them to do what we want them to do even though they agreed to the deal we came to? Are you kidding?
That is a recipe quickly, my friends, for them to walk away from Ukraine, where they are already very dicey and ready to say, “Well, we’ve done our bit.” They were ready in many cases to say, “Well, we’re the ones paying the price for your sanctions.” We – it was Obama who went out and actually put together a sanctions regime that had an impact. By – I went to China. We persuaded China, “Don’t buy more oil.” We persuaded India and other countries to step back.
Can you imagine trying to sanction them after persuading them to put in phased sanctions to bring Iran to the negotiating table, and when they have not only come to the table but they made a deal, we turn around and nix the deal and then tell them you’re going to have to obey our rules on the sanctions anyway?
That is a recipe very quickly, my friends, businesspeople here, for the American dollar to cease to be the reserve currency of the world – which is already bubbling out there…..”
What Kerry is saying here is that the US had no choice. If it had not agreed to the deal Iran offered, the sanctions regime would have collapsed, dealing a humiliating defeat to the US.
Rather than face that disaster the US had no alternative but to agree to what Iran offered.
What that amounts to is an agreement to lift the sanctions in return for limits on a nuclear programme Kerry admits was never intended to result in a nuclear weapon in the first place.
The deal however still leaves Iran in possession of the technology it has developed. Indeed, according to some experts, the deal leaves Iran with the material and technology to develop a nuclear weapon in about a year, should it ever choose to do so.
This interview of Kerry’s has not been widely reported despite – or perhaps because – it casts a fascinating light on the private thoughts of the US government.
First of all it shows that for all its outward show of confidence the US government is acutely worried about the long-term position of the US dollar as the world’s reserve currency, and is nervous of doing anything – such as threatening to enforce sanctions on its European allies – that might undermine it
Those like the US economist Paul Krugman who say the US dollar’s reserve currency status doesn’t matter should know the US government doesn’t agree with them.
Kerry’s interview also shows that for all the outward show of unity, behind the scenes the US’s sanctions policy against Russia is coming in for a great deal of criticism, with European governments clearly unenthusiastic about it – just as they were unenthusiastic about the sanctions the US persuaded them to impose on Iran.
Lastly, it also shows that for all the tough talk and bluster, the US’s actual ability to force its will on its European allies is limited, and that the US knows it.
If the major European governments unite to oppose a policy, the US has no option but to back down and abandon it.
Ultimately however the single most important thing that comes out from Kerry’s interview is the smell of defeat.
Though Kerry makes the best case for the Iran deal he can, he cannot in the end hide the fact that it was the imminent collapse of the sanctions regime that forced the US’s hand, and which forced it to agree a deal with Iran that it would not have agreed to otherwise.
There is an important lesson here for Russia.
Iran is a much smaller, much poorer and much weaker country than Russia. Though by no means an undeveloped country, it lacks the vast scientific, technological and industrial resources that Russia has.
Nor does Iran have the global influence or the advantage of permanent membership of the UN Security Council that Russia has.
The sanctions the US imposed on Iran hurt Iran far more than the sanctions the US has imposed on Russia have hurt Russia.
Like Russia Iran also has a small but very vocal minority that hankers for rapprochement with the US at literally any price. In 2009 this minority tried unsuccessfully to stage a colour revolution in Tehran – just as Russia’s similar minority tried – and failed – to stage a colour revolution in Moscow in 2011.
In the end, by standing firm on all the essentials whilst acting at all times with maximum flexibility, Iran has seen the challenge off.
The result is Iran has emerged the unequivocal victor from this affair, with its position today stronger than it was a decade ago – before the attack on it began.
If Iran can win this sort of duel against the US, then so can Russia.
Russia is in a much better position to do it than Iran was.
There is no reason in fact why Russia should not do it, and there is no reason to doubt it will.
Genocidal maniac Bibi must be having an apoplexy! And that, is a very good thing.
Carmel by the Sea
Carmel, there’s a good article in WSWS on the sheer brutality of Israeli repression against the Palestinians, both in the Occupied Territories and increasingly among the so-called ‘Palestinian Israelis’. Yet, among the vermin (my apologies to rats and cockroaches)of US politics, all you ever hear is groveling sympathy for dead or wounded Jews, and NO MENTION at all of the vastly greater number of Palestinians often murdered in cold blood, or killed by ‘rubber bullets’, or imprisoned with or without show trial, or those whose homes have been demolished in illegal acts of collective punishment etc, The sheer, filthy, racism of it all is simply sickening.
Mulga, I know. Oh! I know. I agree with you 100 %. My soul gets disgusted by these atrocities against the poor Muslims and Christians Palestinians. They get murdered daily by these Israeli Jews whom are genocidal maniacs, the mainstream news ignores the Palestinians but every single day there is a movie on the “Eternal Victims”.
What Iran has to watch out for now is the poisoned apple. The deal opens the way for the West’s soft power to ooze into Iran. It has great opportunities and is a great victory, but it also brings great dangers.
You are correct about poisoned apples. Just look at what this guy, Alex Joffe wrote on July 14,the same day the JCPOA was announced:
Joffe gives us a crash course in pure, unadulterated, Machiavellian evil.
It is in the best interests of Iranians to persists with their ”Resistance Economy” and stay as far away from the West as possible. No good will come of the relationship. None!
”Western businessmen are already flooding into Iran seeking deals, selling all manner of wares in exchange for Iranian cash. Those businessmen, the various branch offices they will establish, and the goods they will sell, represent an important opportunity for Western intelligence agencies to gather information and to subvert the Iranian regime.
One simple method are thumb drives, containing viruses to disrupt computer networks, encryption tools to evade official Iranian surveillance and firewalls, and perhaps even Western music, literature, and movies to subvert repressive traditional values, and classics of Western political thought to inspire Iranian society toward a liberal democratic future. Jazz and rock, blue jeans and samizdat literature played roles in the collapse of communism; their 21st century analogs should be enlisted to help Iranian society reform itself.”
Having lost this round, they now plan to infiltrate Iranian Society en masse and subvert it from within.
Well,even coming from the Times of Israel, I’d have to agree with him. That is a danger that Iran must watch out for. An example being this talk of buying so much from the EU. That is totally foolish. As a matter of policy,Iran should only buy goods from China,India,and Russia,whenever possible. They shouldn’t let their economy benefit their enemies in the least.
Thank you very much for a well informed article. The Neo-cons in the US just couldn’t accept the deal and within hours placed more sanctions on Iran because of its “ballistics missile” programme.
Followed by that snivelling little creep Mr Fabius now pipping up saying the EU is going to consider sanctions too becuase of the B.M. programme. The EU just keeps shooting itself in the head again and again and again…….
The US just can’t help themselves. Sadly for them the rest of the world will carry on business as usual and won’t let the deal be derailed.
Fabius, as a Zionazi Jew, must follow orders from Bibi, and emulate his fellow Zionazi Jews in the US Treasury Department. Nothing was more certain. No doubt we will soon see that gibbering ape Bernard-Henry Levy leaping about, looking for more victims.
Along with this fine article, I suggest reading the one b wrote at Moon of Alabama, particularly the last several paragraphs: http://www.moonofalabama.org/2016/01/no-the-nuclear-sanctions-on-iran-did-not-work.html
I’m extremely grateful to Alexander Mercouris for this excellent article.
Is it me, or is Mercouris just bounding from strength to strength with his analysis and observation in recent months? He’s written some deeply perceptive explanations of a number of events lately, and this one is surely one of his best.
I had wanted to understand the “Iran Nuclear Deal” and hoping to find some good commentary. This piece tells me everything I had wondered about and wanted to know. This explains why Rouhani and Sayyid Khameini were so full of praise for their negotiators, and so insistent that Iran has acted from strength, and has compromised nothing.
Iran is unbowed, and steadfast in its moral and geopolitical position.
If anyone doubts this, read the remarks of IRGC Navy Commander Rear Admiral Ali Fadavi, warning the US Navy that it came close to being sunk, from its amateurish and unprofessional behavior, and that it had better stay out of Iran’s territorial waters – which it has long been forbidden, and for transgression of which the US extended a formal apology to Iran:
Commander: US Navy’s Amateur Behavior Could Send All Its Warships Deep Down Persian Gulf Waters
@Grieved “I’m extremely grateful to Alexander Mercouris for this excellent article.
Is it me, or is Mercouris just bounding from strength to strength with his analysis and observation in recent months? He’s written some deeply perceptive explanations of a number of events lately, and this one is surely one of his best.”
It’s not you, or not just you: I couldn’t agree with you more re Mercouris.
As I commented a couple of days ago in connection with Mercouris’s analysis of the Bild interview with Putin: I love Alexander Mercouris!!
I am so glad we can see his comments at this blog and also can see and hear his world-weary, intelligent drawl on CrossTalk as provided by The Saker.
A section of an Obama speech along the same lines as Kerry’s interview with Reuters.
….As a result, those who say we can just walk away from this deal and maintain sanctions are selling a fantasy. Instead of strengthening our position as some have suggested, Congress’s rejection would almost certainly result in multilateral sanctions unraveling. If, as has also been suggested, we tried to maintain unilateral sanctions, beefen them up, we would be standing alone. We cannot dictate the foreign, economic and energy policies of every major power in the world.
In order to even try to do that, we would have to sanction, for example, some of the world’s largest banks. We’d have to cut off countries like China from the American financial system. And since they happen to be major purchasers of or our debt, such actions could trigger severe disruptions in our own economy and, by the way, raise questions internationally about the dollar’s role as the world’s reserve currency.
Based on Obama’s own comments, this Iranian nuclear deal was (unfortunately) NOT a defeat for the USA, contrary to what Mercouris implies in his article.
If the USA has not agreed to the deal, it would have faced international isolation, caused “disruptions” in its own economy, and–horror of horrors–caused nations to question America’s precious Dollar Imperialist system (aka the Dollar’s reserve currency status).
All of these events would have been a massive and deserved defeat for the imperialist Americans, but alas they did not come to pass because of this Iranian nuclear deal, which it seems has saved America’s parasitic ass!
Just saw a ‘debate’ ( a ‘mass debate’ to be sure) on NPT, with four Yanks, all ferociously anti-Iran, from the plainly psychotic Ruehl Gerecht, through to the comparatively almost sane Robin Wright, spewing hatred, vitriol and lies, as ever. The beast never changes. They appear to be hanging their hopes on regime change through Colour Revolution, again, but one gets the distinct impression that the mad dog Bibi Satanyahoo might yet entertain hopes for a couple of million mitzvot in Iran, and another Holy Massacre to be placed besides Passover and Purim. I’m sure that the psychopath would fancy going down in Jewish history as the great warrior who gave them another opportunity to celebrate another group of their victims’ suffering.
Peter, I just saw some Yank politician on NPR saying that, in an ideal world, the USA would just always, automatically, get what it wants, and other countries would just have to accept it, because what the USA does is, magically, always the best and most moral thing to do. He was lamenting the fact that several Iranian- Americans, framed by the USA and held as hostages, had been pardoned in return for the US prisoners in Iran. The combination of monstrous arrogance and fanatic self-delusion is pure Americanism and even purer Evil.
I read an article in Reuters along similar lines not long ago titled “US soldiers held at gunpoint”
The incredible arrogance and goal of world hegemony is total in the US political/power establishment. Obama/Kerry – over the last few months – at times seeming conciliatory but then turning around and attacking Putin in speeches. Sometimes it seemed they were doing what they could against the war faction ect but nothing quite fit.
The earlier speech by Obama and interview of Kerry about allies deserting them and the dollar being dropped as world currency makes it clear they have the same goals as the warmongers, but are far more cautious, watching their flanks and their backs before moving forward.
The risk with the warmongers is that they are stupid enough to bring on nuclear war, but perhaps the likes of Obama and Kerry are more dangerous.
Obama is a perfect confidence-trickster because psychopathic. He was talent spotted at College by a Zionist teacher, then groomed by rich Chicago Jews throughout his career, to serve their interests. He cannot be trusted under any circumstances because he will lie without conscience, a rare and precious gift in a Sabbat Goy. My favourite of all his dissemblings is how he postures as an enemy of Bibi Satanyahoo, while allowing the Israeli destruction of the Palestinians to grind on and on, while the annual tribute cheques keep flowing to the ‘Eternal People’.
I see that all the time too. It makes me just SMH. And wonder,how can the interviewer not just stare and them and then ask “why,would other nations do that. What reason would you think they should”. But then I realize the sad part is the interviewers think the same way.Their brains can’t accept that anyone would not obey orders from the “most wonderful and exceptional nation in all human history”.
Looking at what has been happening in the US over the last few months regarding Ukraine, Syria, Iran ect, it seems that the cold war faction has gained power over the hot war faction. There seems to be no peace faction in US politics.
The new cold war will be against any and all countries blocking US world hegemony rather than about ideology.
This time around, all the US has to hold onto it’s allies/vassal states is blackmail, US control of political leaders and control of media in ally/vassal states. How long will the US be able to maintain this control when it is to the detriment of the allies/vassals?
In the last few months the US seems to have gained control over a number of new countries though with new leadership both Canada and Australia seemed to have moved slightly away from the US particularly in Syria, rather than blindly following US diktats.
And it can’t have helped that Netanyahu basted egg all over Obama’s ego with his speech to congress:-
I agree theoretically with Alexander that Russia should be able to win in this crisis. But there is one point to make about the comparison. In Iran’s case after the attempted color revolution they cracked down on their 5th column. And the government leadership basically ended real full 5th column influence within the leadership. They have disagreements certainly among themselves. But the patriotic forces are pretty firmly in place. The government in effect said to the opposition “stay loyal or you will literally lose your heads”. Russia doesn’t have that unity in the system. After the 2011 attempt,only minor actions were taken. And the 5th column operates freely in many sectors. Still plotting and working against Russia. It would be as if during WWII the allies allowed a pro-nazi opposition free reign to spread propaganda and plot against them inside the allied countries. They didn’t,and they didn’t for the same reasons that Russia shouldn’t.And that Iran doesn’t. Its too dangerous to a nation’s stability and safety to allow that. So,I won’t be convinced that everything will be alright as long as I don’t see actions taken to control the 5th column. Until then,we can’t be sure of anything.
Don’t we somewhat exaggerate the power and influence of this 5th column?
It might be the other way. Many exaggerate the power of the patriotic forces. The criminals who brought down the USSR and Russia to steal everything didn’t go away, and, to roughly quote Brzezinski “If your elites have $500 billion in the West, are they your elites, or ours?”
Very few of those criminals have been put in jail, and many are at the top of the system. The problem is that the rulers of the West think the top of Russia should be people like Kasparov, not Putin. But they don’t necessarily disagree when it comes to oligarchy or hard-core neoliberal economics.
“Don’t we somewhat exaggerate the power and influence of this 5th column?”
No,I don’t think so. OK,that was a bit sarcastic of me. But no,I think since the 5th column still is harming the Russian economy and the central bank. And still infested throughout the Russian media.I believe we should worry about them.
On the bright side, it will be easy to find the fifth column if they ever to decide to crack down. They are in the most expensive offices and villas in the country. They shop at the most exclusive shops and travel in the finest of vehicles. And the average Russian knows dozens of their names.
Us pessimists think the odds are just as high that a crackdown will occur against patriotic/nationalistic people. They are more inconvenient from the point of view of the elite. And this is not referring to the radical Nazis and such. Those are agents and provocateurs working for the West or the FSB or certain clans.
I think I would echo Veritas. Kerry may have spoken out of turn, which is par for the course in the kabuki like US gov’t. It appears that once again the Anglo-Zionists have reneged on a binding agreement. The ballistic missile sanctions may be less onerous than the original sanctions, but the neocons, including some high powered Democrats, will have the whole thing overturned in due course. Apparently there will be a veto proof majority in the Senate. We can only hope that the Europeans, with their depressed economies, will somehow not knuckle under to Washington’s demands. They stand to make a lot of money from contracts to modernize Iran’s infrastructure and economy. The only hope for this planet is if Europe can somehow get out from under the thumb of the US. Ignoring the re imposition of these sanctions would be a good start.
Kraken, why in the name of all that is sacred should the Iranians reward Europe for being Mordor-on-the-Potomac’s running-dogs?China, Russia and India can provide everything they require. And soon Iran will be hit by a new smear campaign, from the new fascist, pro-Mordor regime in Argentina, over the bombings (by Israel, in fact) of the Israeli Embassy and the Jewish AMIA organisation, which the Zionazis have been trying to frame Iran and Hezbollah for, over twenty years.
To me the important point was the removal of the “UN” sanctions. That were “binding on all nations”. The US and a “few” of their stooges can do what they want. But without UN binding sanctions, Iran is free to trade with most of the other nations. And I doubt that Russia,and China,would allow any new UN sanctions to get passed in the UNSC. Which is “another” reason Iran “should reward” those countries by directing their sales and goods buying to those countries (and India another pardner). And not spend their money on Western goods. If I was in the Iranian government that would be a priority. And if I was in the Russian or Chinese government that is what I would be looking at. And that would determine my attitude towards helping Iran more.
What you said is pointless. The US at any time can call a meeting of the UN security council and call for a vote, if the vote does not pass then sanctions are automatically re-introduced. This is not a normal sanction but the opposite, everyone has to agree to remove sanctions for it to stay removed. Any objections and they go back into force. It was the only reason the US even allowed the deal, they know they were using the UN as cover and that China and Russia would not play along. But the US economy is in deep trouble and Iran would be a little help. Countries like India which had large trade deals with Iran wont defy the UN since then Indian financial institutions will be sanctioned. I think some of the larger financial companies are partner with the US counterparts. Except for some indigenous Indian companies like tata and reliance, they are all British or US companies which own them for ever, even the Indian owners are based in the UK or US. China has more leeway but as we saw, they also play along and only Russia might ignore it but when they say UN laws and Rules, Russia can not openly defy their own statements even if it is US policy. Why Iran has to wait until sanctions are removed to get into the SCO and EEU? Those don’t have any western tie up’s.
I’m not sure on that. I’ve never seen a report on that. I think when sanctions are “removed” for a particular act. Unless you are again doing that act,then they are gone. To put new sanctions on they would need a new UNSC vote. And I don’t see Russia and China permitting that.
The sanctions are NOT removed, they are only put on hold. Go read how they are set up. Anyone in the UN security council can put them back on. But only the US/UK/France would be capable of that. All of them can use the veto and bam the sanctions are back on. Yes the old sanctions. No new sanctions are possible because of Russia and China. The extended security council needs a majority to pass anything without a veto.. So again we come back to the UN 3..
Why does Iran not get the over 100 bil held? They get partial relief as time goes on. The UN 3 can stop that any time. They get like 30 bil this month, the rest every year or so.
I think the main reason for Russia and China supporting this is to get Iran into the SCO and EEU. After which the sanctions would be meaningless.
» Kraken, why in the name of all that is sacred should the Iranians reward Europe for being Mordor-on-the-Potomac’s running-dogs?China, Russia and India can provide everything they require. «
I don’t think that’s true, Mulga. Well, it depends how you define “require”.
I can’t flesh this out as I don’t have the expertise, but as far as I know, for certain industrial infrastructure items the list of supplier countries is very limited. Like Japan, Germany, France, the U.S, and then other European countries, but the four I mentioned are, as far as I know (correct me if I’m wrong), the big suppliers of industrial machinery. So if you can’t buy from these countries you won’t have the item and will have to make do with lesser quality or lesser efficiency.
Iran wants to buy Europe’s stuff and we want to sell it to Iran. It’s good for both sides, brings prosperity and stability.
They can’t trust you. That would totally be a deal breaker for me. If I had to I’d develop my own replacement,even if it wasn’t as high quality. After a while and I kept improving it ,it would be. And if I really needed to,I’d buy “one” of the products I needed from you. And set the “knock off” artists on it. Reverse engineer it to start producing my own. A time honored industrial trick used throughout the past. But the bottom line is,if you can’t trust those you deal with its foolish to deal with them. Maybe the Iranians (and Russians and Chinese) need to translate and learn this old saying ,”fool me once,shame on you. Fool me twice,shame on me”.
China and the US dollar?
A lot of alternative media seemed to be predicting the demise of the US dollar with the launching of the AIIB.
The AIIB will be lending in US dollars.
Reading this article in Sputnik about the 29% drop in bilateral trade between Russia and China for 2015.
…….Among many options on the table are the China-proposed Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), the BRICS emerging economies’ New Development Bank (NDB), the Silk Road infrastructure fund, and the China-Russia Expo.
Russia borrowing US dollars from the AIIB? Russia seems to want to move away from the dollar but would only be able to do that with China alongside.
China seems to be heading somewhere else? What is their end game?
Maybe the idea is to use up the US dollar’s China has. My understanding is they have around 4 trillion dollars in reserves. They would need to get rid of those somehow ,are be stuck with them if the dollar starts to decline.
There is however a problem with Russia. Like Gorbachev, some of the Russian elite things that they are West-Europeans and want to emulate them. Same goes with some of the Iranian elite, who think that they are caucasians and rather collaborate with distant enemies than nearby friends.
» It is therefore nothing short of bizarre that US demands Iran discontinue its nuclear weapons programme took off precisely after Iran had – as the US knew – abandoned its nuclear weapons programme. «
Yet, it seems bizarre. But it makes perfect sense in light of what I promised not to mention any more on this blog. It’s precisely the abandonment of the “nuclear weapons program” that was perceived as a threat, especially wrt to Israel. And it also explains Russia’s stake in and stance on the NWP matter, and the zig-zag theater around the S-300 system, and Russian collusion with the U.S. to obtain a certain behaviour from Iran, and the secrecy surrounding the negotiations, and the cluelessness of all the experts who won’t tolerate outrageous conspiracy theories.
And Iran is victorious in all this and it is a great joy to see!
Thanks to Alexander for this great analysis and the John Kerry quote, and for Peter at 9:36 for the Obama quote.
Thank you for the very interesting article, and yes Israel must be extremely annoyed with this deal, many Us deals have cracks all over them. The Us is a dwindling force, and peace will return to the middle east once the dollar is more dumped.