Saturday, 19 December 2009

Ron Paul: Anti-Iran Sanctions Punish Civilians, Are an Act of War

As we have learned with US sanctions on Iraq, and indeed with US sanctions on Cuba and elsewhere, it is citizens rather than governments who suffer most. The purpose of these sanctions is to change the regime in Iran, but past practice has demonstrated time and again that sanctions only strengthen regimes they target and marginalize any opposition. As would be the case were we in the US targeted for regime change by a foreign government, people in Iran will tend to put aside political and other differences to oppose that threatening external force. Thus this legislation will likely serve to strengthen the popularity of the current Iranian government. Any opposition continuing to function in Iran would be seen as operating in concert with the foreign entity seeking to overthrow the regime.

This legislation seeks to bring Iran in line with international demands regarding its nuclear materials enrichment programs, but what is ironic is that Section 2 of HR 2194 itself violates the Nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty (NPT) to which both the United States and Iran are signatories. This section states that “[i]t shall be the policy of the United States… to prevent Iran from achieving the capability to make nuclear weapons, including by supporting international diplomatic efforts to halt Iran’s uranium enrichment program.” Article V of the NPT states clearly that, “[n]othing in this Treaty shall be interpreted as affecting the inalienable right of all the Parties to the Treaty to develop research, production and use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes without discrimination and in conformity with articles I and II of this Treaty.” As Iran has never been found in violation of the NPT — has never been found to have diverted nuclear materials for non-peaceful purposes — this legislation seeking to deny Iran the right to enrichment even for peaceful purposes itself violates the NPT.

Although Iran is within its rights to build a nuclear power station, I believe that everything needs to be done to avert a strike against that country because the attack will involve the use of depleted uranium munitions. These weapons result in long-term radiological contamination of the surrounding land. This cannot be allowed to happen.

As hard as it may be politically, the Iranian leadership should seriously consider dismantling their nuclear power project, in favour of the long term health of the country.

The USA, as a superpower is on the wane and is set to self destruct economically in the coming year. The Iranians should wait out this period of hostility and pursue nuclear power generation at a later date.

[Posted at the SpookyWeather blog, December 19th, 2009.]

No comments: