Changing Tehran: No Pain, No Gain
Tehran Bureau / Hossein Askari
13-Oct-2009 (2 comments)

[ comment ] Things rarely change in Washington. Frustrated by an adversary's policies, the reflex action of political moderates up and down Pennsylvania Avenue is for increased sanctions, and for conservatives, keeping the military option on the table. In the case of Iran, these cries are reaching a fever pitch. But the military option would be catastrophic and the track record of sanctions is nothing to crow about.

So what could work? Well, additional financial sanctions by the Treasury could squeeze Iran -- cutting off all Iranian bank access to the international financial system -- but this would require the cooperation of the Europeans, and also of China, Russia, Dubai and Malaysia, countries that could front for Iran.

There is a targeted US initiative -- with no need to make concessions to China and Russia -- that could alter Iran's objectionable policies, improve its human rights and make its nuclear enrichment less dangerous. A little insight into Iran's economic conditions provides an answer.

Iran's foreign exchange reserves are being rapidly depleted because of lower oil prices and capital flight. Over the summer, because of political uncertainties and a sick economy, it was estimated at $250 million per day to Dubai alone. The last official figure for Iran's foreign currency reserves in July of 2008 placed it at a little over $80 billion. My estimate is that it now stands in the $40 to $50 billion range because of decl... >>>

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I'm not surprised that Iran's enemies in DC would say,

by Ostaad on

"brave Iranians may suffer even more for a few months and Iranians
living abroad may take a financial hit, but this would be a small price
to pay if conditions truly improve in Iran. The illegitimate and
oppressive regime will be forced to change its criminal human rights
abuses or the regime collapses altogether, and in this latter case even
the nuclear issue would become more manageable. Now that's an outcome
worth pursuing."

Mr. Askari is like a serial rapist who goes on to claim that his victims' suffering was a "small price" to pay to "improve" their sex lives!

He is the embodiment of Iran's enemies no matter how much he sugarcoat the poison pill he is pushing the US to shove down the throats of the Iranian middle/working class people. 



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