Thursday, 20 September, 2018

Iran FM on diplomatic tour to salvage nuclear deal

Crude oil surged 7% so far in 2018 and hit a three-year high of $64.81 a barrel on Monday reflecting confidence that an epic supply glut may finally be over because of production cuts by OPEC and Russia Iran FM on diplomatic tour to salvage nuclear deal
Russell Knight | 16 May, 2018, 07:14

This is the first time that Iran has issued an ultimatum since US President Donald Trump announced last week that Washington was withdrawing from the nuclear pact and reimposing crippling sanctions on Tehran, sparking worldwide concern and outrage.

Officials are considering whether a drop in Iranian exports and a decline in supply from another OPEC member, Venezuela, demands adjusting the deal that runs to the end of 2018.

Most unsafe is that there is no sign the president has any Plan B for what to do when his decision worsens the Iran problem.

White House national security adviser John Bolton, who has in the past suggested the USA government should push for a change in government in Iran, said on Sunday that is not the Trump administration's current policy.

Shades of George W. Bush's 2003 pipe dreams about regime change in Iraq led by exiles. "Do we accept that the United States is the economic gendarme of the planet?" All of Iran's uranium had to be low-enriched at 3.67 percent or under - nowhere near the 90 percent that classifies enriched uranium as weapons-grade. Prices have gained over 8% over the past month and 15% since the beginning of the year. "Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps bears full responsibility for the consequences of its reckless actions, and we call on the IRGC and its militant proxies, including Hezbollah, to take no further provocative steps". Those lies make it more, not less, necessary to keep intrusive inspections.

The major force that could hold the region back from all-out war is Russian Federation, said Boston College political science professor Ali Banuazizi. Nor did it cover missile development or Iran's expansionist behavior in the Mideast - or firmly specify the need to inspect Iranian military sites.

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"Countries that continue to deal with Iran could face USA sanctions", he said, also suggesting that European countries may change their stance on Trump's decision to withdraw from the deal.

For weeks, the State Department has been working to bolster security at USA diplomatic posts around the Muslim world in advance of the embassy move, anticipating possible violence even as administration officials say the issue no longer galvanizes the Mideast the way it once did. Now, Iran will likely up the pressure on those US troops and on USA soldiers in Iraq. "Trump's move this week strengthens the hardliners, who are happy he did what he did".

"Some Iranian hardliners have always opposed the agreement, mostly out of a general fear of what an opening up of Iran to the West would do to their political position", Pillar said.

A USA domestic law called the National Defense Authorization Act bans many countries from trading with Iran.

He said perhaps they feel that way in large part because representatives of the Obama administration were working in the past several weeks to try and prevent the deal from abrogating, which may have given the Europeans the false impression that they could prevail. Trump has also hinted that he might impose additional sanctions on top of those which were waived. Bolton admires the Mujahedeen-e-Khalq (MEK) opposition group in exile that until 2012 was on the USA terrorism list for having killed Americans and Iranian civilians.

"It's reminiscent of the saying attributed to Vladimir Lenin that the capitalists will sell us the rope with which we'll hang them", he said.

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