Expert: West needs formula that would allow it and Iran to save face

Posted on August 7, 2012

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The West would need to come up with a formula that would allow both it and Iran to save face if it wants to pre-empt a potential Israeli attack before the US election, Senior fellow at Nanyang Technological University’s S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, James M. Dorsey said.

“Fact of the matter is that the sanctions have so far failed to prompt a change of Iranian policy,” Dorsey underscored.

On August 2, both chambers of the US Congress passed legislation Wednesday to impose tougher sanctions on Iran in an effort to force that country to end its nuclear ambitions.

The House of Representatives passed the measure by 421 votes to six, while the Senate passed the bill later in the day by unanimous consent.

The new legislation would bolster sanctions against Iran by allowing the government to blacklist the country’s energy sector and those who do business with it by targeting banks, shipping firms and insurers.

Dorsey also dismissed a scenario according to which, Iranian nation might turn against the government and demand an end to the nuclear program, under harsh economic conditions in the country.

“There has been little indication of that so far,” Dorsey said. “Beyond the fact that sanctions often have a rallying of the wagons effect, Iranians by and large favour the nuclear program.”

The expert also noted that there are several countries which do not wish to see Iran nuclear, and yet prefer someone else to handle the issue.

The new bill on Iran would impose sanctions on anyone who mines uranium with the Islamic Republic; sells, leases or provides oil tankers to Tehran; or provides insurance to the National Iranian Tanker Co., the state-run shipping line.

The U.S. and Europe argue that depriving Iran of its oil income thwarts its suspected drive for nuclear weapons.

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