On August 6th, the Trump administration reimposed economic sanctions on Iran that were relaxed by President Obama as part of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal. The sanctions include blocking the acquisition of US banknotes by the Iranian government, restricting the country’s trade in precious metals and materials used in industry, as well as measures to further devalue Iran’s currency. Further sanctions are set to hit Iran’s oil and gas industry, with the US promising to impose an embargo on Iran’s energy exports.
The new measures follow on the heels of increasing instability in Iran as the country’s economic performance continues its steep decline since December 2017. Soaring unemployment rates, rising food prices, and a collapsing currency have led to massive demonstrations and rioting against the regime since January of this year.
The sanctions are set to worsen Iran’s economic situation and exacerbate social unrest in an effort by the Trump administration to force the rogue regime to give up its nuclear capabilities.
Under the 2015 deal, negotiated by the Obama administration, Iran had the chance to keep its nuclear program on the condition that it limit further expansion and grant international inspectors access to nuclear facilities.
The deal, however, gave Iran “the right to deny international inspectors access to any undeclared nuclear site,” making the whole process a pathetic farce. With its nuclear program still in place and the ability to block inspections, Iran would have the option to weaponize its program whenever it felt compelled to do so.
There is no clear explanation as to why a country rich in oil and natural gas is so adamant in its refusal to give up its nuclear program, or why it continues to refuse in spite of the tremendous suffering the sanctions are causing the Iranian people. There is no clear explanation for Iran’s obstinacy, except that it wishes to develop nuclear weapons.
World leaders and critics of the President condemned the US’s withdrawal from the Iran deal, despite the single-minded drive of the Islamic Republic’s dictators to weaponize nuclear energy. It is paramount that the President of the United States ignore his detractors and continue the economic strangulation of Iran. It may be that the Iranian people’s intensifying anger at their despotic government will force Iran’s Supreme Leader to the negotiating table.
Until the terrorist regime in Tehran gives up its nuclear program, America and the world cannot be safe.
Daniel Yoshino is an Editor-At-Large for theDailyLead.