Obama blocking more sanctions on Iran?
posted at 12:14 pm on July 3, 2009 by Ed Morrissey
Barack Obama said that he didn’t want to “meddle” in the Iranian crisis, but now it looks like he’s finally taking sides. Unfortunately, it’s the wrong side. Haaretz reports that Obama has attempted to block an expansion of sanctions on the Iranian mullahs among the G-8 nations (via Yid with Lid):
The United States is opposed to enacting a new set of financial sanctions against Iran that are due to be discussed in the G8 summit next week, diplomatic officials in New York reported Friday.
According to officials, sanctions against Iran are expected to top the G8’s agenda. Sources are also predicting a pointed debate between the heads of the industrialized nations over an appropriate response to Iranian authorities’ suppression of reformist demonstrations in Iran led by Mir Hossein Mousavi and other Iranian opposition leaders.
Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi hinted in a newspaper interview earlier in the week that the G8 is due to decide on new financial sanctions against the Islamic Republic. Berlusconi disclosed that he had spoken with the heads of the G8 nations and has discussed such steps with them.
According to the Italian prime minister, “the general leaning [among G8 leaders] is toward sanctions.”
However, diplomatic sources in New York reported that American officials are working behind the scenes to prevent new sanctions from being imposed against Iran.
Why? Why would the Obama administration oppose using sanctions as a diplomatic and economic device to put pressure on the Iranian mullahs to reform? They are telling other G-8 diplomats that they feel the sanctions will “backfire”, driving Iran away from the negotiating table, where Obama thinks we can talk Iran out of their nuclear weapons.
In other words, the fantasy continues. While the rest of the world wants to get tough on Iran, creating more internal pressure on the mullahs by increasing their isolation, Obama wants to allow them to suffer no consequences at all for their oppression and to strip the opposition of a legitimate issue — that the mullahs have made Iran a pariah nation. Why? Because Obama thinks that he can reason with the non-rational actors in Tehran, who want nuclear weapons for both regional hegemony and the power to wipe Israel off the map, a goal that their mouthpiece has repeatedly and publicly stated as a national interest of the mullahcracy.
At least the administration has realized that direct talks are now dead, according to the Haaretz report. Too bad Obama doesn’t understand that the problem in Iran isn’t the nukes, but the radical Islamist tyrants with their hands on the button.