As expected, the US has stepped up its sanctions on Iran for “supporting terrorists” and pursuing nuclear activities – new measures target the finances of Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps and three state-owned banks. The US said the moves were part of “a comprehensive policy to confront the threatening behaviour of the Iranians”, while Iran said the latest “hostile policies” were counter to international law, and accused the US of hypocrisy. Under Executive Order 13382, US authorities will be able to freeze the assets of, and prohibit any US citizen or organisation from doing business with the Revolutionary Guards. The US declared the Revolutionary Guards a “proliferator of weapons of mass destruction”and their international arm the Quds Force, a “supporter of terrorism”. The US has repeatedly blamed the Revolutionary Guards for supplying and training insurgents.
In light of the destruction of Iraq in the last 5 years, the deployment of more armaments in Europe and the massive US nuclear arsenal, it is not surprising that Iran sees the US as a demonic superpower rather than an enlightened global leader. The Iranian response: “It is incongruent for a country who itself is a producer of weapons of mass destruction to take such a decision. A country that has created and supported many terrorist groups cannot obstruct the course of development, progress and prosperity for the Iranian nation.”
The sanctions will simply aggravate Iran and make reconciliation more difficult. A peaceful approach should be adopted.