The Global US Squeeze on Iran has started: Europe is looking for alternatives

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Written by Elijah J. Magnier – @ejmalrai; Originally appeared at his blog

Today the harshest and highest level economic and energy sanctions that can be imposed on any country are being imposed unilaterally on Iran. The US establishment will try its best to bring the Islamic Republic to its knees and Tehran will do its best to cross the US minefield. Whatever the outcome, Iran will never submit to Washington’s twelve conditions.

Iran is not a fledgeling country ready to collapse at the imposition of the first tight sanctions, nor will Iran allow its oil exports to be frozen without reacting. In fact, US and UN sanctions against Iran date to the beginning of the Islamic Revolution and the fall of the Shah in 1979.

No doubt the Iranian economy will be affected. Nevertheless, Iranian unity today has reached new heights. President Trump has managed to bring reformists and radicals together under the same umbrella!

Iranian General Qassem Soleimani has said to President Hassan Rouhani: “You walk and we stand ahead of you. Don’t respond to Trump’s provocations because he is insolent and not at your level. I shall face him myself”. Rouhani believes “US policy and its new conspiracy will fail”. All responsible figures in the Iranian regime are now united under the leadership of Imam Ali Khamenei against the US policy whose aim is to curb the regime.

Under the previous worldwide sanctions regime, Iran began developing missile technology and precision weapons. Iran has never yielded in support of its allies because these alliances are an integral part of its ideology. Today, Tehran is not standing alone against the US and is waiting to see what course global sanctions will take before reacting. Officials in Tehran, convinced that Trump will win a second term, are preparing for a long siege.

Sayyed Ali Khamenei said his country will never strike any deal with the US and won’t be a party to any future agreement because the US is fundamentally untrustworthy. Iran relies on the unity of its own citizens and on the support of its partners in the Middle East, Europe (a crucial strategic ally), and Asia. Europe, notably, is trying to disengage itself from the US sanctions, but so far with little success. Its leaders are begging in vain for an exemption for trade in food and medicine to reduce the population’s suffering.

Trump is determined – even if these measures are harmful to the European economy – to prevent any transactions between Iran and Europe. This is one of the main reasons why the old continent is looking at implementing a long-term strategy specifically to disengage itself from the Swift messaging service used by banks and financial institutions for all trade transactions worldwide.

The UK, Germany and France have stood firm against the US establishment’s decisions and sanctions for the first time since World War II. Trump shows no concern for principles, laws or international agreements (like the Nuclear Deal) and is instead engaged in a naked quest for profits. The US is trying to maintain its global hegemonic power and its long-standing efforts for world domination, at the expense of its European partners and its Middle Eastern allies who are constantly bled by the US’s extortion racket.

Several European companies have an interest in ignoring Trump’s warnings: they could decide to trade with Iran solely on the basis of local currency exchange, provided there are no US-based assets involved.

One of the main problems remains Iraq. The US aims to create internal struggle within Baghdad’s political circles, notably between pro-Iran and pro-USA factions. Nevertheless, Mesopotamia will never close its doors on Iran’s trade and will maintain the flow of goods between the two countries, regardless of consequences. If Trump decides to deal more harshly with Iraq, he will push the country further into the arms of Iran.

Trump has already shown signs of weakness: he granted a temporary sanctions waiver to eight countries, including Russia, China, Turkey, Japan, India and South Korea. Russia, China and Turkey have announced that they will not abide by any sanctions, with or without US blessing. This means that Iran will not be completely surrounded; these countries will trade extensively with the Islamic Republic. Iranian exports of 2.5 million barrels per day will be reduced but will never be shut down completely. Thus US plans–to hit Iran’s economy, change the regime, stop innovative military production and curtail Iranian support to its allies in Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Yemen and Afghanistan—are not feasible.

The “Islamic State” (ISIS) terrorist group managed to sell its oil for several years. Stolen oil from Iraq and Syria reached the Mediterranean and was even exported outside the Middle East. By the same token, a long-established country like Iran will not find it very difficult to export its oil.

Trump’s sanctions have terrorised his allies more than his enemies. These allies are seriously looking today for other alternatives. What was inconceivable has become a reality; US actions respect no limits or boundaries. The new sanctions will help Iran to become even more independent and self-sufficient in many fields. Furthermore, the number of countries concerned by and determined to escape US hegemony is increasing. The US is showing a few diplomatic skills: in reality, it has become a giant, indeed, very strong, entity with a lot of muscle but few brains.

At the same time, there are strong indications that the US is extremely concerned about its worldwide position. Europe is not hiding signs of rebellion against the US; China and Russia are emerging as potential world leaders, while Turkey may reassert a leadership role in the divided Arab world. These countries will certainly remain outside the US orbit, and many other countries, realising that their interests are no longer served by an alliance with the United States, will slowly but surely join them.

Proofread by: Maurice Brasher and C.B.

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  • Merijn

    Good Luck Iran with the coming Sanctions…. don’t give in…Hard & Strong…. the U.S., the U.K. & IsraHell are a Massmurdering Stealing, Raping, Human/ Organ Trafficking, Weapons/ Drugs-Trading Global Criminal Organisation That needs to be stopped by all means necessary… These days are the Days That Supremacist AngloZioNazi will Fall… and in a Desperate attempt to safe their Sorry-Asses they Sanction the World and Threats of WAR leave their mouth in their Final Death Throes

  • paul ( original )

    The USA can apply the tourniquet to Iran and then wait and observe the
    results. The sanctions may not bring about Iran’s destruction, but
    there will be damage . In a sense the USA has made its decision and I
    expect will just move on to its next foreign policy concern.

    As for other counties helping Iran, this is certainly possible. It is
    also possible that ‘allies’ will take advantage to exploit Iran for
    there own benefit. So may be Iran will be be able to trade but at
    unfavourable terms.

  • John Whitehot

    i don’t get the title.

    the squeeze is either “global” or “US”.

    it should be reminded that the US is the only country sanctioning Iran.

    the only thing global is the threats to foreign enterprise willing to keep their businesses with Iran.

    • Jens Holm

      USA has many followers even many are – as decriebed – in a lower level. The same goes for Russia.

      As usual, people ignolre that and only are learned USA, Jews and like that. Very narro insight to, how things are.

  • peter mcloughlin

    The world could be closer to nuclear war than during the Cuban Missile Crisis. Then, one protagonist was able to step back from the brink. Conflict between the US and Iran, could very easily escalate into global confrontation. Can Moscow abandon Tehran? No, a destabilized Iran, at risk of regime change, is a threat to Russia’s vital interests – even survival. And if America can’t back down: there’ll be war. If vital interests clash there is no alternative but war, nuclear war in this case.
    The evidence shows we are heading for Armageddon:
    • Power, (manifested as interest) was present in very conflict in history – no exception. It is the underlying motivation for war. Interest cuts across all apparently unifying principles: family, kin, nation, religion, ideology, politics – everything. We unite with the enemies of our principles, because that is what serves our interest. It is the one thing we will destroy ourselves for, as well as everyone else.
    • History shows that every civilization/nation eventually gets the war it is trying to avoid: utter defeat. This applies as much today as any other time in history.
    • Leaders and decision-makers delude themselves, thinking they can avoid their fate – they can’t. If survival is threatened, there is no alternative to war, however destructive.
    https://www.ghostsofhistory.wordpress.com/

  • Brother Ma

    Several European companies have an interest in ignoring Trump’s warnings: they could decide to trade with Iran solely on the basis of local currency exchange, provided there are no US-based assets involved.

    So what? Don’t these have to go through SWIFT system? So the US will still stop the exchange of money or will countries physically deliver gold bullion and paper cash notes in local currency to Iran?

  • paul ( original )

    It is not incorrect to say that these sanctions have ‘united Iran”.
    But it can not be forgotten that this whole affair has turned out to
    be a huge blunder by the ‘moderates’ and indeed by the Supreme leader
    for permitting it. Let’s not forget that Iran is still abiding by the
    JCPOA. Some facilities have been disabled, some destroyed. All done
    in the hope of economic benefit, which now look primed to deteriorate.

    I can not go along with the idea that Iran managing to survive is in
    anyway a victory. At best it is a low order consolation prize.

    As for shooting some air defence missiles into the air, as Iran has just
    done, this seems just symbolic.

    Some other poster has said that Russia needs to protect its southern
    flank. This is true and does give Iran some hope that it will get
    some support. China may also be accommodating. The Europeans are
    worthless will soon fall into line. Does any one expect India or
    Pakistan to do anything beyond trying to get the most out of it.