The Socialist Party USA ticket has come out in favor
of lifting sanctions on Iran. Stewart Alexander and Alex Mendoza believe
that the sanctions do not serve their intended function.
"The sanctions don't hurt the Iranian government, they strengthen it," explains Alexander. "They hurt the working people of Iran.
The message echoes some discussion amongst foreign policy scholars regarding the effects of sanctions. The campaign believes that these sanctions are putting undue stress on the people of Iran while doing nothing to harm the regime, inhibiting the ability of the people to stand up for themselves.
"As brutal of a dictator as the Shah may have been, theocracy is never the
answer," continues Mendoza. "The working people of Iran do not support the
dictatorship of the Ayatollah and Ahmadinejad and the recent demonstrations by
tens of thousands of Iranian citizens, confronting the regime, are evident that
many of Iran's citizens do not support the harsh regime."
"Though we are critical of the Iranian government," says Alexander, "we are also critical of the reasons behind the sanctions in the first place. Iran has signed the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty which gives them the right to help in developing nuclear power in return for not having a nuclear weapons program. Nuclear power was suggested for Iran by the United States under the Shah. Whatever their politics, Iran has the right to a peaceful nuclear program."
India and Pakistan are known to have developed nuclear capabilities and Israel is generally believed to have developed nuclear capabilities as well. None of these countries signed the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
Mendoza further explains, "Ultimately, we hope to rid the world of nuclear weapons altogether and replace nuclear energy with safe and renewable energy sources. However, there is no evidence that Iran seeks a nuclear weapons program, only nuclear energy. There is a huge gap between the ability to generate nuclear power and the ability to build a nuclear warhead.