Is The U.S. Going To War With Iran? | AJ+

Is The U.S. Going To War With Iran? | AJ+


Is the United States looking for a war with
Iran? The Trump administration will now financially
penalize anybody that buys Iran’s oil and will also impose sanctions on Iran’s iron,
steel, aluminum and copper sectors. This is the most drastic step the U.S. government
has ever taken toward Iran. And it comes at a time when Iran was actually abiding by an
agreement it reached with the Obama administration. So frankly, it makes no sense. In 2018, President Trump pulled the U.S. out
of the Iran nuclear deal – an international agreement unanimously endorsed by the UN Security
Council. It’s not that Iran was deemed to have violated
the deal; international inspectors and even U.S. intelligence certified that it was in full
compliance. Trump rejected the agreement itself, having
vowed on the campaign trail to take a harder line against Iran. Although the U.S. does hardly any business with
Iran, Trump aimed to deprive Iran of its prime source of revenue by threatening sanctions
against countries that buy its oil. After a year of so-called ‘waivers’ to countries
like China, India, South Korea, Japan and Turkey, those threats of sanctions have now
come into effect. So the United States doesn’t buy any oil from
Iran and hasn’t for a very long time. But what it’s trying to do is tell the rest of
the world how it should conduct foreign trade. And needless to say, most countries resent
being told whether they can deal with this country or that country. It’s only because of the power of the dollar
in the U.S. financial system because most transactions have to pass through the American financial
system that we even have the power to do this at all. Some analysts think that the Trump administration’s
policy is shortsighted, could backfire in a number of ways, and even set the U.S. on a
path to war with Iran. Many also see its purpose as being to create
such deprivation among ordinary Iranians that they rise up and overthrow their regime — a
longstanding goal of Washington hawks and Iran’s regional foes. Though European powers like France, Germany
and the UK oppose the U.S. withdrawal from the nuclear deal and the new sanctions, Washington
hopes to pressure them to comply by implementing “secondary sanctions.” These block foreign companies from doing business
in the U.S. if they also do business in Iran. So some of Iran’s remaining oil customers
are likely to fall in line and comply with U.S. demands. However the situation is much
more complicated when it gets to China, Turkey and India. They all have their own separate calculations
and horse trading with the U.S. and relations with Iran that they have to balance. It’s complicated and it’s hard to predict in which direction
these countries would move, but they will be the ones who will make or break U.S.’
maximum pressure strategy against Iran. At first, it might seem like Trump turning
up the pressure and reimposing sanctions will get the Iranians to comply to his demands. After all, sanctions forced Iran to sign that
2015 nuclear agreement, right? Not quite. The accord could only become a reality because
the U.S. met Iran halfway. So yes, I mean sanctions played a role, but
more important is a diplomatic strategy that makes sense, where a country can see that
it will get benefits if it agrees to certain concessions. And those benefits were supposed to be an
end to a lot of the sanctions, an ability to sell oil freely again and to have foreign investment and to see the economy grow in Iran. And that’s where the Iranians have been cheated
because so far they’ve been following the restrictions they agreed to
on their program but they’re not getting the benefits. There lies the difference between Trump’s
Iran policy, and the Obama approach that he has reversed. The Obama administration believed that avoiding
another massive U.S. military intervention in the Middle East required diplomacy. Obama and his advisors also believed that
it was necessary to make realistic demands and offer clear incentives to Iran to prevent
it from gaining the means to build nuclear weapons. Although Obama initially increased sanctions
on Iran, he also saw that sanctions had failed to curb the country’s nuclear program. In fact, quick history lesson: From 2001 to 2006, the Bush administration
had attempted to halt Iran’s enrichment program by using a mixture of diplomacy and threats
of force. States like these, and their terrorist allies, constitute an axis of evil. Guess what? It didn’t really work and Iran continued expanding
its nuclear program and began to build thousands of centrifuges to enrich uranium. Later, despite significantly tightening sanctions,
the Obama administration recognized that this was not stopping Iran from expanding its nuclear
program in a way that would give it the means to build a bomb. That’s why Obama concluded that by staying
on the sanctions path, the U.S. would be left with only two options: Either accepting Iran as a nuclear weapons-capable
nation or starting a war to prevent that. And he didn’t want to do either. Today, after two years of negotiations, the United States, together with our international partners, has achieve something that decades of animosity has not. Look, pressure without an open door is an exercise
in futility. The reality is the previous time when we had sanctions and they resulted in
a diplomatic solution, it was when the Obama administration took regime change off the
table in direct letters that President Obama sent to the Supreme Leader of Iran. And also when the U.S. took the first step and
made the first concession to the Iranian side when the Obama
administration took off basically the zero-enrichment requirement from the table, then accepted
a limited enrichment program on Iranian soil. It’s important to remember that by all measures,
Iran has been complying with the conditions underlined in the 2015 nuclear agreement. So if Iran has kept its end of the bargain,
why hasn’t the Trump administration done the same? Well, that’s because adopting a harder line
against Iran has been popular among American conservatives for a very long time. Even though Trump likes to say he’s the great
dealmaker, the kinds of demands that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo put forward are, are
simply unrealistic. I mean, they wanted Iran to completely stop
its nuclear program, give up a ballistic missiles, pull out of all the places it’s involved in
the region, even change its human rights policy. I mean, it’s, you know, they’re not going
to do that. They’re not going to capitulate to the United States. So what’s the other
possibility? Regime collapse. And I think that really is the goal of people like John
Bolton. They want to see the country fall apart. The sanctions against Iran have hit the country
hard. According to U.S. officials, Iran has lost
more than $10 billion in oil revenue because of sanctions. The Iranian economy shrank by almost 4% in
2018 and is expected to shrink by around 6% in 2019. Iran’s currency also lost more than 60% in
2018, worsening inflation in the country which is expected to reach at least 40% in 2019. And the Trump administration may be looking
to exploit this weakness. Look, there is this belief in Washington that
Iran doesn’t respond to pressure, but responds to massive pressure. So the idea is to ratchet
up and increase pressure in a way that would able to bring the Iranians to their knees,
either to come back to the negotiating table and surrender or, instead of capitulating,
maybe the regime will collapse. I think there are a lot of people in this administration,
most important among them National Security Advisor John Bolton, who believes that this
is a moment of vulnerability in Iran, that its leadership is aging and its population
is frustrated with political and economic stagnation. And if they increased the economic pressure,
they have a chance of bringing about regime change, which is something that many people in Washington have been dreaming for at least four decades. But whether the United States can successfully
sabotage and bring the Iranian economy to a complete collapse is still up for debate. After all, previous American presidents have
attempted to cripple Iran’s economy, but Iran has always found a way to survive. Without any doubt, the Iranian economy would
be in dire straights. But one thing that is important to remember that this is not the
first time the Iranians are experiencing these kinds of economic difficulties. In fact, this is the fourth time in the past
four decades that Iran is losing more than half of its oil revenue almost overnight. The Iranians are quite resilient and quite
experienced in dealing with economic difficulties and circumventing U.S. sanctions. So if we’re talking about short run, I think
they have what it takes to remain afloat economically. But this situation is not sustainable in the
medium- to long-term. Now, it may seem like the Trump administration
is the only one wanting to turn up the heat under Iran. The truth is, a few other players are involved. Specifically: Iran’s neighbors who aren’t
too happy with Iran’s involvement in the region. Of course there are U.S. allies in the region,
Israel, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, which are strongly supporting this pressure
against Iran because they don’t want Iran to be as influential as it is in their region. And there is this tremendous rivalry between Iran
and Saudi Arabia. It’s just gotten worse since Mohammad bin Salman became so influential. And so the Saudi hope is that somehow Iran
will draw back in the region, that it won’t be so involved in supporting the Houthis in
Yemen and propping up Assad in Syria and Hezbollah in Lebanon, that Iran won’t
be as influential in Iraq. I don’t think that’s going to happen. So, now that the U.S. has moved to essentially
strangle Iran’s economy, how will Iran react? In May 2019, Iran gave an answer: It officially ended its compliance with parts
of the nuclear deal. There are also signs that Tehran is getting impatient
with the European Union. The European Union has come up with something
called a “special purpose vehicle” for essentially a kind of ledger, so that trade could go on
between Iran and Europe without money actually changing hands, at least initially a kind
of barter arrangement. But it still has not started working. And Iranians are really, really frustrated.
It’s a year now since the Trump administration withdrew from
the deal and this “special purpose vehicle” is still not up and running. Trump’s hardline on Iran is also an all-or-nothing gamble. It’s important to understand that the Iranian
political system is not all in agreement. This means that, just like in the U.S., there
are competing voices in the political establishment. Quite a few of those voices weren’t happy
with the compromises Iran had to make in the nuclear deal. Now, those same voices are using Trump’s abandonment
of the deal to question whether there’s even a point in cooperating with the West. The Iranian regime views U.S. sanctions as
economic warfare, and analysts fear that they could be provoked into more dangerous confrontations
on other fronts, such as blockading oil shipments through the Strait of Hormuz, which could
trigger military conflict. They think that because the election in the
U.S. is just a year and a half away, they have to wait to see the outcome of that election.
But I think if U.S. pressure really brings the Iranian economy to the brink of collapse,
then the Iranians might have to put aside their strategic patience policy and pursue
retaliation. With relations between Washington and Tehran
souring, and Europe seemingly unable to act, what happens now? We are all hoping that the next administration,
even if Trump is re-elected, will change its policy toward Iran and will adopt a more realistic
strategy that has a chance of really not just, you know, changing Iranian policies that we
don’t like, but really improving the life of the Iranian people. But the pressure on Iran is escalating sharply,
and the next U.S. election is 18 months away. And even if it could be sure that the result
would change the current hardline policy, can Tehran wait that long?

60 comments

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  2. God will be in control.
    Amen.

    He is in control of everything and He controls each person and all people.
    Amen.

  3. And the elephant in the room is .. nuclear weapons. Obama handed 400 mil to the Iranians who used the funds for their nuclear program. Iran has made it clear they want to destroy America and destroy Israel. They must prevented at all costs from becoming a bigger threat

  4. I hope for no war but shouldn't the people recieving welfare checks be required to go ? After all they have been getting paid for years. We need cooks, dishwashers, clothes washed, oil changes, things built. There is work to be done.

  5. Iran is the world's leading sponsor of Islamic terrorism. They are also acting out by seizing shipping. Iran needs to be shut down. Obama paid $150+ billion dollar extortion payment. Trump isn't going down that road. Iran is going to get a deal they can't refuse. No more extortion payments, or a payment system to stop Iran' development of nuclear power which they do not need, or can not be verified as to development.. Basically, Iran misses the money to pay their clandestine military operations. Iran is either going to get along with the reast of the world, or they are in trouble. China needs the oil, Russia needs to sell oil. Iran is a major threat to the rest of the world, including China and Russia. Iran may well be a war proxy for everyone concerned. Best outcome would be for the Iranians to over throw the mullahs…. Maybe we could help.

  6. One thing we know for sure, war with Iran is inevitable, It could happen any day an Damascus will be obliterated, According to prophecy the question is whether it will all happen at the same time or not.

  7. Give sanction against Israel, because it has weapons of mass destruction like nuclear bomb, Hydrogen bomb, poison gas, sarin gas (nerve gas), phosphorus bomb (uses against Gaza , banned by UN)

  8. It was only a ten-year deal to slow down Iran, in the hope they would come to their senses and stop being belligerent to Israel, the US, and it's Arab neighbours. When someone says they want to wipe you out, believe them and take preventative steps. Iran has not come close to stopping its belligerence and support for anti-western anti-Arab terrorists and is extending its military reach bit by bit. This has not achieved the aims of the agreement. Iran has not changed. Appeasement, as history shows, doesn't work with an implacable foe. Remember that Iran is not a democracy, only a facade of democracy. Candidates are pre-selected by the theocracy and one man has the final say. My dictionary calls it a dictatorship when one man controls everything.

  9. The problem here is that Iran is the Major sponsor of terrorism in the world. They use their oil income to sponsor terrorism in other countries, which really upsets other Islamic nations and most of the free world. Previous administrations basically gave up trying to rein in Iran.

  10. Wake up people of America. The future has been written and I have given the message of what is to come and its interpretation. Pay attention and listen whether it is what you want to hear or not.

  11. Life is not fair!, big fish eat small fish!, too bad if you born in the wrong place, it doesn't meter if your country is small, and poor, it mean you are fxxx and suck.do you think ,is it fair? I think it is very fear.

  12. The US and the allies were paying tens of billions of dollars to Iran to keep it from enriching uranium for a short period of time. That was called bullying and this is called false reporting.

  13. Anyone remember when US shot down Iran's civilian airliner? And now they want to bomb more 3rd world countries. Pathetic

  14. Mr. President Donald Trump is not a warmonger he will negotiate before there will be any fighting we have our own oil we don't need yours we just want you guys to have peace in the Middle East that's what our president wants for you peace in the Middle East and that's what the United States citizens want for you peace

  15. Trump and Gov: We going to war.

    People in America: Y'all fault not ours, y'all don't listen to the people so y'all fight your own fight.

  16. "The world without USA means chaos for the whole world, but without iran, it's much safer for mankind." It's obvious that this place badly needed a regime change for its own survival.

  17. A deal was a joke there was no deal is and they can inspect themselves they can threaten the US and every country around them and we're a bunch of morons and they're supposed to believe that you're not going to use this their weapons brother about the dumbest crap I've ever heard what A bunch of BS it was a deal is a bad deal and they probably got their mom that they need and they're so crazy they will use it

  18. I think the US' best option is to let Iran continue to follow the sanctions and let them go about running their country the way they deem best. The US can focus on a broader defense and just possibly try to move forward with oil alternatives and kinda just avoid negotiating with Iran as a whole. It seems best since according to what I just heard, the US has been trying to find level ground with them for years and it hasn't happened. They are just one nation and it wouldn't be in the US' favor to keep arguing with a stop sign so to speak

  19. Presurizing economy of other country is cruelly bad and crime.Today,Russia,China and North Korea are challenging America in nuke abillity strikes.Sanction system makes America be isolated without friends /allies.

  20. Pale Greed And War Blood Thirsty Barbarics! Oil Over Innocent Lives! Their History And People Hardly Ever Change! SOME NERVE TO CALL OTHER RACES IGNORANT!!

  21. U.S. will do what it has to and if its war with iran this war won't last 3 weeks. iran will be inilated. I like the idea of no iran. Do it!

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