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Iran won't crack

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Headlined to H2 7/8/12

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It's crucial once again to backtrack to May 17, 2010, when Brazil, Turkey and Iran, after non-stop 18 hours of grown-up diplomacy in Tehran, reached an agreement; Iran would send its low enriched uranium to Turkey and would get enriched fuel for a nuclear research reactor.

Even some Arab countries -- including GCC members -- were in favor, as well as Paris. Moscow and Beijing were wary -- because they saw it as Iran abdicating from its NPT rights. Anyway, the day after US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton torpedoed the deal -- essentially because it allowed Iran to continue enriching uranium.

Cracked actors

Washington "softened" up Iraq for over a decade with extremely hardcore sanctions before it could launch Shock and Awe and destroy a debilitated, fragmented nation. Regardless of the wishful thinking fog enveloping neocons and fake liberals alike, this "strategy" won't work with Iran.

Even if Iran is now selling less oil, and even if it is de facto cut off from the international financial system, Tehran will find ways to revolve the new EU sanctions/oil embargo and drive up oil prices. China will remain a steady client -- paying less for Iranian oil (in yuan) but buying more. The eurozone will not break up -- for now, so its demand won't fall.

Most of all, the Iranian Majlis (Parliament) may soon pass the bill allowing inspections of tankers carrying oil along the Strait of Hormuz to countries that are part of the embargo. Even if this amounts to routine police inspection, the effect will be to drive up oil prices. The top patsy will be -- once again -- the EU, confirming Brussels' infinite capacity to act against the national interests of member states.


If one criss-crosses Kaveh Afrasiabi (Iran's Persian Gulf gambit takes shape, July 5, 2012) with Chris Cook (Introducing the E-3, July 4) here at Asia Times Online, one can fully explore the multiple dimensions of "Iran won't crack."

The Obama administration has to make a real decision; it's either the "roll over and die" school of diplomacy, or real negotiations. Treating Iran like a pariah will only lead to a blunder equaling the Bush administration's -- whose Shock and Awe ended up with a Baghdad closely aligned with Tehran (while the US didn't even become "the new OPEC," as savant warmonger Paul Wolfowitz would have it).

But this will pale compared to Iran, Russia and China trading energy in other currencies (as they are already doing); the beginning of the end of the petrodollar as the pillar of global energy politics, and thus of American hegemony. Time for the Iran cracking gang to go back to school.

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Pepe Escobar is the roving correspondent for Asia Times. His regular column, "The Roving Eye," is widely read. He is an analyst for the online news channel Real News, the roving correspondent for Asia Times/Hong Kong, an analyst for RT and (more...)
 
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I think that your articles are just about the most... by Timothy Gatto on Sunday, Jul 8, 2012 at 10:31:58 PM
The most sensible decision for the Administration ... by Ed Dingilian on Sunday, Jul 8, 2012 at 11:59:57 PM
Negociation is a great idea but do you think the U... by Marika on Monday, Jul 9, 2012 at 8:45:50 AM
There is only one possible outcome if this country... by Robert P. Philipps on Monday, Jul 9, 2012 at 5:01:31 PM