TEHRAN—Things are getting more complex concerning Iran's nuclear program. The Brazil, Turkey-brokered Tehran Declaration according to which Iran agreed to ship 1,200 kilograms of its Low Enriched Uranium to Turkey for further enrichment to be used in Tehran's research reactor was welcomed by a fourth round of UNSC sanctions and a set of unilateral sanctions imposed by the EU and United States against Iran.
At the same time, Tel Aviv has renewed its war threats against Tehran, cautioning that it might use the Saudi Arabia's airspace to launch a military strike on Iran's nuclear facilities; however, the war of words and struggle over dominance and superiority between the governments have only resulted in further crippling the daily life of ordinary Iranians with harsher trade sanctions, citizens who have already been punished by a 30-year-long embargo by the United States.
"Sanctions rarely accomplish what they are intended to do, or what they are claimed to intend to do. They usually hurt the poor and middle class the most," says Eric Garris, the prominent American peace activist and the founder of Antiwar website.
"The Iraq sanctions are an excellent example. Sanctions are nothing more than a form of collective punishment and a step toward war," he adds.
According to Garris, the United States has resorted to the exercise of double standards by putting a lethal pressure on Iran to halt its nuclear program while neglecting the atomic arsenal of Israel that has threatened Iran with a nuclear strike several times: "Of course these double standards are not justifiable. But it is not just Israel. The U.S. and several Western nations have threatened Iran with nuclear weapons, yet they deny the right of Iran to possess the same sorts of weapons."
"It would not be surprising if Iran was trying to obtain nuclear weapons, although there is no evidence that they are trying to obtain them, given the number of countries threatening them with the same. The U.S. should begin disarmament of its own nukes and encourage others to do the same," stressed Garris.
Eric Garris believes that the obligations of Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty are being imposed on Iran discriminatorily:
"The Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty has become a farce. Nations like Israel, Pakistan, and India are not pressured to sign or submit to inspections, while Iran is forced to comply with even more inspections than are required by the treaty. The treaty can only work if it is applied equally across the board."
The co-founder of Antiwar website also believes that the United States has labeled Iran a "state sponsor of terrorism" fallaciously:
"Iran is no more a state sponsor of terrorism than the U.S. is. By labeling a nation this way, the West is able to deny it basic respect and rights and to paint it as some sort of backward nation of thugs. Americans need to learn the recent history of Iran, including the US-backed overthrow of the democratic regime in 1953 and US support for Saddam in the Iran-Iraq War."
Responding to my question about the prospect of Israel without the unconditional sponsorship of the United States, Garris stated that it would be impossible for Israel to survive politically should the White House lift its support for Tel Aviv:
"Israel would have a hard time sustaining their warfare, welfare state without the billions of U.S. aid and its unconditional diplomatic support. Americans need to kick the ultimate welfare queen, Israel, off the dole and cut off all foreign aid."
And the final word of Eric Garris was about the recent Freedom Flotilla massacre:
"The international community, by and large, let Israel get away with an act of piracy on the high seas. They also continue to let Israel get away with turning the Gaza Strip into a giant prison camp, using collective punishment as the only rule of law."
Kourosh Ziabari is an Iranian media correspondent, freelance journalist and interviewer. He is a contributing writer of Finland’s Award-winning Ovi Magazine and the the Foreign Policy Journal. He is a member of Tlaxcala Translators Network for Linguistic Diversity (Spain). He is also a member of World Student Community for Sustainable Development (WSC-SD). Kourosh Ziabari's articles have appeared in a number of Canadian, Belgian, Italian, French and German websites. He can be reached at email@example.com
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