Regime Change & Sanctions: Why None of the Tools of US Foreign Policy Work Against Iran or Venezuela

On Monday, the Trump administration announced that it was imposing “UN” sanctions on the Iranian Defence Ministry and Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro for what Washington called aiding Tehran’s weapons programmes. Iranian analyst Mani Mehrabi has explained what’s behind the failure of the US to gain international support for its Iran policy.

“Our actions today are a warning that should be heard worldwide: No matter who you are, if you violate the UN arms embargo on Iran, you risk sanctions,” US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo stated on 21 September.

On 19 September, the US unilaterally re-imposed UN sanctions on Tehran through a Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) snapback mechanism, although the UN Security Council made it clear in August that Washington could not instrumentalise the process, having abandoned the deal in in 2018. In an official statement, Pompeo specified that Washington “took this decisive action” because the Security Council “failed to extend the UN arms embargo on Iran” last month.

“The Security Council’s inaction would have paved the way for Iran to buy all manner of conventional weapons on 18 October,” Pompeo claimed. “Fortunately for the world, the United States took responsible action to stop this from happening.”

Washington’s Allies Don’t Support Its Iran Strategy

While at first glance, the United States has many financial, political and military partners in different regions, in practice there is a serious conflict of interests…

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