By Tarek Fatah
November 6, 2018
At the time of this writing leading up to the U.S. mid-term elections, it appears that President Donald Trump will have pulled off a miracle if he does not lose control of the House of Representatives to the Democratic Party.
However, while Americans may deliver a setback to Trump, he is headed for a more certain failure on the other side of the globe.
On Monday, the United States violated the 2015 UN Security Council Treaty with Iran under which Tehran ceased its nuclear program in exchange for the lifting of sanctions imposed by the world community.
This time, America found itself all alone. UK, Germany and France all promised to support European firms that do “legitimate business” with Iran while China, Russia and India simply shrugged at the Americans, telling them to mind their own business.
Putting on a brave face, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told a news conference on Monday, “Our objective is to starve the Iranian regime of the revenue it uses to fund violent and destabilizing activities throughout the Middle East and indeed around the world.”
Virtuous verbiage, but words that lacked credibility and revealed suspect intentions. For Pompeo didn’t say a single word against Saudi Arabia, a country whose 50-year campaign of fanning the flames of Islamism is more deserving of Pompeo’s charges than Iran. The latest being the state-sanctioned murder of Jamal Khashoggi and, according to at least one claim from Turkey, the dissolving of his body in an acid container.
Seyed Hossein Mousavian, the Middle East Security and Nuclear Policy Specialist at Princeton University, wrote in an op-ed for Reuters that there are five reasons why the new Trump sanctions will fail:
1. There is no viable replacement for Iran’s 2.5 million barrels per day in oil exports.
2. Trump’s trade war with China and imposition of economic sanctions against Russia make Beijing and Moscow less likely to work with Washington on Iran.
3. American withdrawal from the Iran Nuclear Deal has encouraged countries such as Russia, China, India and Turkey to use their local currencies to trade with Iran.
4. The remaining signatories to the 2015 Iran Nuclear Deal view the nuclear deal as a means to counter American unilateralism. This is due to the fact that the 2015 deal is a multilateral agreement backed by UN Security Council resolution 2231.
5. Only a handful of U.S. regional allies – namely Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Israel – support Trump’s decision to withdraw from the deal.
In the Cold War of the early 1960s, Chinese leader Mao Zedong used to describe America as the ‘paper tiger’. He must be smiling in his grave.
As for nuclear threats, there is only one country that has its nuclear-tipped missiles aimed at Israel and it is not Iran; rather it is Pakistan. The story does not end there. The BBC previously reported in 2013 that Saudi Arabia has invested heavily in Pakistani nuclear weapons projects, and believes it could obtain atomic bombs at short notice.
An anonymous former intelligence officer in Islamabad told the BBC that he believed “the Pakistanis certainly maintain a certain number of warheads on the basis that if the Saudis were to ask for them at any given time they would immediately be transferred.”
There is something rotten in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and its serfdom Pakistan, but both the U.S. and Israel seem to be blind to this fact. Unfortunately, ordinary Iranians will be forced to pay the price of living under an Islamic dictatorship, the insecurity stemming from the threat of sanctions and a liberal-left that is in bed with Iran’s Islamists.