By Press TV
By Arash Zahedi
Oil Prices have increased again. This time after the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) released its recent report on Iran’s nuclear activities.
The world economy especially that of the West is indeed doing badly enough without the help of increased oil prices that have recently settled at more than USD 125 a barrel. And it seems to fix the by the day worsening situation, the Western countries are doing nothing but to aggravate it.
Also last week, the prices increased when Iran announced it will not sell oil to France and Britain and the European countries that will not sign 3-5 contracts with Iran’s oil sector.
Jim Bianco, President of Bianco Research, says the move would send the United States into another recession, with gas prices hitting recently more than USD 5 a gallon.
In fact, what is threatening more than ever the very livelihood of ordinary citizens in Europe and America these days is not a nuclear Iran but leaders who have started a lose-lose game against an energy-rich Iran.
The idea of sanctions, economic and more recently oil and banking, against Iran by the US and its allies is, at least on the surface, to cripple the movement of the country towards accessing nuclear know-how and as the West claims a nuclear weapon eventually.
The IAEA, as the international body watching over the nuclear activities of different countries, often says there are ambiguities regarding the Iranian program but it has also time and again attested to the peacefulness of the country’s nuclear work.
The Los Angeles Times said on Thursday that a consensus report by 16 US intelligence agencies shows Iran has not even tried to build any nuclear weapons and that there has been no diversion in its atomic energy program.
Now the question is why some countries would intend to jeopardize their own economies at such a difficult time by the role they willingly and at times, as the case is for some European countries, unwillingly take on and sanction Iran without hard evidence? How effective will these sanctions be? Why would some kill Iranian nuclear scientists? Why is the country threatened with a ‘military option’? And will this ‘option’ guarantee cheap oil for the West?
Top Iranian oil officials say some European countries have already started negotiations to buy Iranian oil and countries like Japan and South Korea are seeking waivers from oil sanctions. Others like India and China, both giant spenders on oil, had from the beginning said they will not abide by these anti-Iran oil sanctions, with New Delhi even increasing its imports from Iran. This brings seriously under question the effectiveness of such moves as an oil embargo. Indeed, what had the US expected from countries which, unlike itself, produce very little oil if any?
Iranian bank sector sanctions, analyst say, have a great chance of falling flat as well. Iran’s oil money in Chinese banks, for instance, can turn into the everyday commodities the Iranian nation needs and Turkish banks may also be very helpful in doing transactions with the European Union (EU) on behalf of Tehran.
However, the question of a military strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities is without a doubt the most controversial. The fact that who will dare taking a step to this end perplexes everyone both in the Middle East and the US.
Israel as the only, unchecked yet proven, atomic weapon owner in the region may be the number one culprit for a possible yet not very likely military strike on Iran to save itself as it claims from ‘an Iran threat’. A ‘threat’ truly hypothetical in comparison with what Israel has actually been doing to the existence of Palestinians.
Any Israeli strike, Iran has vowed, will entail a crushing response. A response that will, by some chance, drag the US as Tel-Aviv’s number one ally to a new Middle East war. People in the US, bearing the brunt of the economic hardships the other two US wars in the region (Iraq and Afghanistan) have inflicted on them, will not be on the side of their government as some of them once used to be in 2001. They have had enough of a decade brimful of false reports of the imaginative Iraqi WMDs, of WikiLeaks revelations, of their children returning home in body bags, of losing homes to foreclosures, of having to fight under a Republican Bush and a Democrat Obama, no matter who they elect.
People like former New York mayor Rudi Giuliani, who say President Obama is not tough enough against Iran and pushes for a war, had better remember that as the Big Apple mayor in 9/11 of 2001, all he did was touring the city and introducing the relief workers of the tragic day!
For Israel, though, an Iran attack, aside from triggering a deadly Iran response, will be very risky. More than a thousand miles flying in unknown skies to penetrate the Iranian nuclear facilities located in the heart of a vast country means refueling for Israeli jets in the skies other than that of their own. Besides, if one can imagine that some of them can escape the Iranian air defense on the invasion phase, what are they going to do when they want to leave? Iranian military officials answer that question–They won’t leave!
An Iran war gives hell to its perpetrators and the whole region. It will be Tel-Aviv’s most dangerous game and a hard sell for the US.
Perhaps what Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has recently said may be one possible scenario to address these questions. Putin says Western powers are trying to change the ‘Iranian regime’ under the cover of fighting nuclear proliferation.
Regime change, defusing a nuclear threat or whatever excuse there may be for the West’s anti-Iran stance, the fact of the matter is that things are moving in a direction that will bear no fruit for the US and its allies.
Threats and sanctions together with a lack of constructive talks with no attached colonial-era-style preconditions have left a lot to be desired as far the handling of the current situation is concerned.
What the world needs today after a decade of the West’s adventurism is trust and dialogue and no more death, hunger, homelessness and confrontation.