Iranian nuclear crisis / Economic sanctions should be imposed on Iran

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Position: Economic sanctions should be imposed on Iran

This position addresses the topic Iranian nuclear crisis.


For this position


Quotes-start.png "So far, Iranian leaders have suffered little for their nuclear ambition--in fact they have gained as oil prices have risen. But if they were to suffer severe and personal financial losses, it might affect their calculus." Quotes-end.png
From Hammerin' Hank, by Marc Sumerlin (The Weekly Standard, September 18, 2006) (view)
Quotes-start.png "An emboldened nuclear Iran is no more in the interest of the Middle East's Sunni Arabs than it is of Australia or the US. The process of international diplomacy must still be given more time. But the world cannot wait forever. Thwarting the mad Iranian regime's nuclear ambitions by any means necessary should be a project that unites the world." Quotes-end.png
From A nuclear Iran is not an option, by The Australian editorial board (The Australian, September 1, 2006) (view)
Quotes-start.png "Practically speaking, the United States doesn't even have enough soldiers to fight in Iraq. We've outsourced the war to mercenaries. We haven't even had enough National Guard troops to help with the California wildfires." Quotes-end.png
From Rein in the rush to a war in Iran, by Chicago Sun-Times editorial board (Chicago Sun-Times, October 28, 2007) (view)
Quotes-start.png "If the sanctions are as successful as the financial crackdown on North Korea, they could have the same result: forcing Iran to end its defiance of the Security Council and begin serious negotiations to stop its bomb program." Quotes-end.png
From A Boost for Diplomacy, by The Washington Post editorial board (The Washington Post, October 26, 2007) (view)
Quotes-start.png "These nonmilitary U.S. sanctions come after more than four years of deferring to European and U.N. diplomacy toward Iran. The U.S. delayed even this move for months as it tried to persuade Russia not to block more serious sanctions through the U.N. Security Council. Iran feels confident in pursuing a nuclear bomb, and promoting terrorism, precisely because it believes Mr. Putin and others will block any serious multilateral response." Quotes-end.png
From Squeezing Iran, by The Wall Street Journal editorial board (The Wall Street Journal, October 26, 2007) (view)
Quotes-start.png "Third, while a diplomatic resolution is still possible, it can succeed only if we negotiate from a position of strength. This will require better coordination with our international partners and much stricter sanctions. Negotiations with Iran would probably be ineffective unless our European allies sever commercial relations with Tehran." Quotes-end.png
From Stopping A Nuclear Tehran, by Daniel Coats, Charles Robb (The Washington Post, October 23, 2008) (view)
Quotes-start.png "Russia and China have promised to support some penalties for Iran, and my sense is that maintaining their support -- and international solidarity on Iran -- matters more than the details of sanctions. Failure to penalize Tehran would, among other things, undermine the Iranian pragmatists who favored negotiations. It would show that Tehran can defy the West and get away with it, which has been one of Ahmadinejad's implicit themes." Quotes-end.png
From The Black Box of Tehran, by David Ignatius (The Washington Post, October 20, 2006) (view)
Quotes-start.png "Bush seems to have gotten it and stopped his administration from heading into the ditch of an isolation-only policy. It is sound, but insufficient, to urge the administration to do more to talk to Iran. That won't get you very far unless you can also figure out how to get President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's regime to respond in a meaningful fashion." Quotes-end.png
From Ping-Pong Diplomacy for Iran, by Jim Hoagland (The Washington Post, November 5, 2006) (view)
Quotes-start.png "If the pressure is not to be military, it can only be economic. The US has now done almost all it can economically, including frightening European banks off financing trade with and investment in Iran, but it does not itself have a major commercial relationship to withhold. Europe does. According to the European commission, 27.8% of Iran's trade last year was with the EU, making it the country's biggest trading partner." Quotes-end.png
From Facing disaster in Iran, Europe must finally make the hard choices, by Timothy Garton Ash (The Guardian, November 1, 2007) (view)
Quotes-start.png "Iran's economy is certainly vulnerable. It just started rationing gasoline - and relies on imports for 40 percent of its needs. We might look at getting key suppliers, like the United Arab Emirates and India, to cut back. Another option is to target the government's economic mismanagement: Buy up and flood the international market with Iranian rials, devaluing the currency and sending already high inflation and unemployment further skyward." Quotes-end.png
From Messing Up the Mullahs, by Peter Brookes (New York Post, May 29, 2007) (view)
Quotes-start.png "So will Mr. ElBaradei now support tough new punitive measures by the U.N. Security Council? We expect not. Like several of the Security Council's members, the Egyptian-born director is far less concerned with preventing an Iranian nuclear bomb than in thwarting those he describes as the "crazies" in Washington. As long as that mentality prevails, it's unlikely that Iran will face sanctions stiff enough to cause it to reconsider its defiance of the multiple U.N. resolutions ordering it to suspend uranium enrichment." Quotes-end.png
From Iran's Failed 'Litmus Test', by The Washington Post editorial board (The Washington Post, May 28, 2008) (view)
Quotes-start.png "Iran is vulnerable to economic pressure. Its oil industry counts on foreign investment, and the automobiles that choke its cities are mostly fueled by imported gasoline. Sanctions that put real pressure on the Iranian economy, combined with a continuing offer of expanded trade and security guarantees when the nuclear program is suspended, might still crack Iran's hard-line posture. In the absence of such action, the options of surrender or war will only gain ground." Quotes-end.png
From Next Step on Iran, by The Washington Post editorial board (The Washington Post, May 27, 2007) (view)
Quotes-start.png "Any new sanctions must be based on the notion that Ahmadinejad is telling the truth. He's said, over and over again, Iran has no intention of halting its program. Is that negotiable? The only way to find out is to significantly crank up the price that Iran pays for defiance." Quotes-end.png
From Truth and consequences, by Chicago Tribune editorial board (Chicago Tribune, May 17, 2007) (view)
Quotes-start.png "Capital outflows from Iran surpassed the $200 billion mark in the past year alone. Much of that money has made its way to banks in the United Arab Emirates, many of which have correspondent banks in the U.S. "We are preventing financial transactions going to the Palestinian Authority because banks are scared they'll be hit by U.S. terrorism-financing laws," says a source who closely tracks the Iranian economy. "Why can't we do the same thing with Iran?"" Quotes-end.png
From How to Stop Iran (Without Firing a Shot), by Bret Stephens (The Wall Street Journal, May 16, 2006) (view)
Quotes-start.png "This resolution finally passed in part because President Bush is so weakened by the latest National Intelligence Estimate on Iran, by domestic economic woes and by the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan that the Russians, Chinese and Europeans no longer fear that he'd attempt to take advantage of a tougher U.N. stance to justify a military attack on Iran in his waning days in office. If Bush would clench his teeth and stop threatening Iran, perhaps the rest of the world will feel the need to do more to contain it." Quotes-end.png
From Putting Iran on notice, by Los Angeles Times editorial board (Los Angeles Times, March 5, 2008) (view)
Quotes-start.png "The resolution is winning international support from such traditional friends of Tehran as Moscow precisely because it does not attempt to crush the entire Iranian economy. But it does target the business ventures and people directly responsible for Iran's nuclear and ballistic missile programs, freezing the assets of research institutes, scientists, a major bank and seven senior members of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, as well as companies that are owned by and help finance the guard's activities." Quotes-end.png
From Smarter sanctions against Iran, by Los Angeles Times editorial board (Los Angeles Times, March 19, 2007) (view)
Quotes-start.png "There is little doubt that financial sanctions that punish Iran's elite and its business class are, over time, more likely to crimp President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's nuclear ambitions than any U.S. military action, which would only rally the Iranian people around their unpopular leader." Quotes-end.png
From Sanctions with sense, by Los Angeles Times editorial board (Los Angeles Times, July 9, 2007) (view)
Quotes-start.png "It is time to apply sanctions to persuade Iran to stop uranium enrichment, and to provide some modest low-calorie sweetener to make the deal palatable. Iran's right to nuclear fuel cycle technology ended when it began violating its safeguards agreement almost 20 years ago. And it is apparent that the real purpose of Iranian enrichment is to provide fuel for weapons, not reactors." Quotes-end.png
From Time for Iran to face more sanctions, by Peter Zimmerman (The Boston Globe, July 6, 2008) (view)
Quotes-start.png "The National Intelligence Estimate concluded that Iran would be guided by "a cost-benefit approach" in deciding about its nuclear program. We can only hope that this assessment is correct -- and that the Security Council will ensure that the costs are made manifest." Quotes-end.png
From Another Iran Resolution, by The Washington Post editorial board (The Washington Post, January 26, 2008) (view)
Quotes-start.png "After the most unpromising of starts, United Nations sanctions on Tehran, banning the transfer and financing of nuclear and missile materials bound for Iran, are having an effect. Both Iranian and international officials say President Mahmoud Ahmadi-Nejad's wings have been clipped." Quotes-end.png
From Making Iran pay for its nuclear choice, by Financial Times editorial board (Financial Times, January 26, 2007) (view)
Quotes-start.png "The threat to global security is too serious and immediate for the U.S. to wash its hands and withdraw. Pulling out of Iraq will not solve the growing problems in Iraq and Iran, as congressional Democrats increasingly suggest. On the contrary - it would only make them worse." Quotes-end.png
From Iran on the Horizon, by New York Post editorial board (New York Post, January 1, 2007) (view)
Quotes-start.png "If Iranians no longer feel the need to rally around their leaders under the threat of an imminent confrontation with the West, might they now start to look harder at their shambles of an economy, unemployment and inflation in double digits, gasoline rationed, and start to demand more? Might they ask the obvious question: Is the drive to enrich uranium worth it?" Quotes-end.png
From A hard winter in Iran, by Chicago Tribune editorial board (Chicago Tribune, February 9, 2008) (view)
Quotes-start.png "The evidence that sanctions could work is significant. Consider the economic picture inside Iran. A roughly 100-page report prepared by the foreign affairs and defense commission of the Majlis, the Iranian parliament, and dated September 2006 was recently leaked to the French daily Le Monde. The report analyzes the economic and social consequences of potential international sanctions." Quotes-end.png
From Sanctions Against Iran Would Work, by Olivier Guitta (The Weekly Standard, February 19, 2007) (view)
Quotes-start.png "Someday a future president may decide, in consultation with a future Congress, that the risks of seeking to contain a nuclear-armed Iran are greater than the risks of seeking to degrade or destroy its nuclear capability by force. Most intelligence estimates suggest that such a decision need not be faced in the next two years." Quotes-end.png
From The Iran Options, by The Washington Post editorial board (The Washington Post, February 18, 2007) (view)
Quotes-start.png "Iran may not have an active nuclear weapons program now. But the new NIE also says Iran is "continuing to develop a range of technical capabilities that could be applied to producing nuclear weapons, if a decision is made to do so." Once Tehran has mastered the ability to enrich uranium, building a bomb wouldn't take long." Quotes-end.png
From Keep the pressure on Iran, by Chicago Tribune editorial board (Chicago Tribune, December 9, 2007) (view)
Quotes-start.png "John Edwards immediately said the report justified his vote against designating the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps as a terrorist organization and imposing sanctions on it. But the NIE's major conclusion is that Iran calibrates its nuclear efforts--including the suspension of the weaponization part--in a real-world cost-benefit reaction to outside pressure. It makes the case precisely for sanctions." Quotes-end.png
From Keep Up the Pressure, by Charles Krauthammer (Time, December 6, 2007) (view)
Quotes-start.png "So, as Iranians worry that their nation is becoming an international pariah and perhaps heading down the path of bankruptcy in the process, now is not the time for America to give in by offering direct talks with Ahmadinejad. That propaganda victory would only help him reclaim the legitimacy and stature that he is losing with his own people at home." Quotes-end.png
From The curtain is closing, by Victor Davis Hanson (Chicago Tribune, December 29, 2006) (view)
Quotes-start.png "The resolution's order that countries stop supplying material for Iran's nuclear effort carves out a huge loophole for Bushehr, the Russian-supplied light-water reactor. Even a proposed international travel ban on Iranian officials was dropped in the end at Russian insistence. As John McEnroe might describe this resolution: "You cannot be serious!"" Quotes-end.png
From Iran Irresolution, by The Wall Street Journal editorial board (The Wall Street Journal, December 27, 2006) (view)
Quotes-start.png "Passage of a U.N. sanctions resolution against Iran -- still pending three months after it was brought up -- cannot be put off any longer; the administration should call a vote and force supposed "partners" such as Russia to choose." Quotes-end.png
From A Mideast Counteroffensive, by The Washington Post editorial board (The Washington Post, December 16, 2006) (view)
Quotes-start.png "The onus is on Russia and China. The world is waiting. History's verdict on those who sabotage a peaceful solution will be deservedly harsh." Quotes-end.png
From Iran's enablers, by The San Diego Union-Tribune editorial board (The San Diego Union-Tribune, August 25, 2006) (view)
Quotes-start.png "The difficulties experienced by the UN in implementing Resolution 1701 and enlisting sufficient troops for an expanded international force in Lebanon raise serious doubts about the international community's determination to counter the threats posed by extremists elements in the Middle East." Quotes-end.png
From Now is the time for sanctions, by Haaretz editorial board (Haaretz, August 25, 2006) (view)
Quotes-start.png "The obvious next diplomatic step is to show Iran that the world meant what it said by following through with the toughest achievable sanctions. A myth has developed in some circles that there are "no good options" available to pressure Iran, but that's more excuse than analysis." Quotes-end.png
From The Ayatollah's Answer, by The Wall Street Journal editorial board (The Wall Street Journal, August 24, 2006) (view)
Quotes-start.png "The Bush administration appears likely to seek a sanctions resolution at the United Nations. Britain, France and Germany seem ready to go along with that. But Russia and China are said to be wavering, and if they can be persuaded to support sanctions, the price may be that the sanctions are mild. Why this maddening lack of nerve?" Quotes-end.png
From Iran Stalls, by The Washington Post editorial board (The Washington Post, August 24, 2006) (view)
Quotes-start.png "The point is to inch forward and allow no daylight to open up among allies. If and when it becomes clear that Iran won't budge, the alliance against it can be solid enough to inflict what pain is possible. Iran's economy depends on oil riches and handouts. Reducing trade and the refined gasoline Iran that imports (because it doesn't have enough refineries) are potential pressure points." Quotes-end.png
From Iran's double talk leaves U.S., allies plenty of bad options, by USA Today editorial board (USA Today, August 23, 2006) (view)
Quotes-start.png "Any sane person would conclude that Iran is on a collision course with the world. But the United Nations is not made up of sane people, so U.S. Ambassador John Bolton will have a hard time in coming days. With the official deadline of Aug. 31 for Iran to suspend its nuke activities, Bolton must herd the Security Council toward imposing tough economic sanctions." Quotes-end.png
From Just one dog in the hunt, by Michael Goodwin (New York Daily News, August 23, 2006) (view)
Quotes-start.png "So what happens next? Sanctions, probably. But the kind of sanctions which hurt ordinary, poverty-stricken Iranians too much would be counterproductive. Those which most hurt the elite would be preferable: international banking restrictions will damage the corrupt mullahs, and a form of oil sanctions may also put pressure on them." Quotes-end.png
From Why this man should give us all nightmares, by Ann Leslie (Daily Mail, August 22, 2006) (view)
Quotes-start.png "There is also a Tehran business class that would be threatened by international isolation: I'm told that Iran's oilmen are frustrated that they cannot buy the exploration technology they want. They need Iran to come in from the cold. The international community could exploit these conditions, but only if it is united." Quotes-end.png
From The problem is: Iran does pose a threat in every way Iraq did not, by Jonathan Freedland (The Guardian, April 26, 2006) (view)
Quotes-start.png "The big players [...] need to agree on a list of new sanctions with a lot more bite: a ban on dealings with major Iranian banks; a ban on arms sales; a ban on new investments in Iran. They need to warn, credibly, of even tougher sanctions to come. At the same time, Washington needs to make Iran a serious offer to talk about everything, including security assurances and diplomatic and economic relations if Iran is willing give up its fuel program and cooperate fully with inspectors." Quotes-end.png
From Adrift on Iran, by The New York Times editorial board (The New York Times, April 11, 2008) (view)

Against this position


Quotes-start.png "It is both possible and desirable to solve the problems between the United States and Iran through direct talks. Such diplomacy will best serve the interests of the American and Iranian people if it is conducted in a transparent fashion. This transparency would not only make it impossible for advocates of war to increase tensions but also would help isolate them." Quotes-end.png
From Letter to America, by Akbar Ganji (The Washington Post, September 21, 2006) (view)
Quotes-start.png "After winning the presidency in 2005, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad recognized that nuclear weapons could be used as an emotive symbol of sovereignty. He has systematically exploited nationalist resentment of U.S. pressure on the nuclear issue to strengthen his position in dealing with the United States and to counter domestic political rivals. The drive for sanctions will only strengthen Ahmadinejad." Quotes-end.png
From Sanctions Won't Stop Tehran, by Selig S. Harrison (The Washington Post, October 2, 2007) (view)
Quotes-start.png "Paradoxically, to liberalize the theocratic state, the United States would do better to shelve its containment strategy and embark on a policy of unconditional dialogue and sanctions relief. A reduced American threat would deprive the hard-liners of the conflict they need to justify their concentration of power. In the meantime, as Iran became assimilated into the global economy, the regime's influence would inevitably yield to the private sector, with its demands for accountability and reform." Quotes-end.png
From The Iran Option That Isn't on the Table, by Vali Nasr, Ray Takeyh (The Washington Post, February 8, 2007) (view)
Quotes-start.png "But only Obama can overcome the gridlock. He must break with the Bush years in more than words. That requires a solemn declaration that the United States recognizes and no longer seeks to destabilize the Islamic Republic — an implicit renunciation of force. A threat, in Iranian eyes, can only come from a domineering power, the very U.S. attitude this country cannot abide." Quotes-end.png
From The Unthinkable Option, by Roger Cohen (The New York Times, February 4, 2009) (view)
Quotes-start.png "But if sanctions are doomed to failure, what about military options? As a last resort, couldn’t America or Israel stop the nuclear programme by threatening to bomb Iran? Sadly or happily (depending on your worldview), the answer is a very clear “no”." Quotes-end.png
From The Iranian paradox: to gain victory the West must first concede defeat, by Anatole Kaletsky (The Times, August 24, 2006) (view)
Quotes-start.png "Washington could authorize the European negotiators to make certain conditional offers, and see how Tehran responds. What's the worst that can happen? It doesn't work, the deal doesn't happen and Tehran resumes its nuclear activities. That's where we are today." Quotes-end.png
From Talk to Tehran, by Fareed Zakaria (The Washington Post, August 16, 2005) (view)

Mixed on this position


Quotes-start.png "The time may come sooner than we think when it is necessary for the protection of Iran's neighbors and the world to interrupt their bomb-making plans through unpeaceful means, by blowing up Natanz and similar operations. There would be howls in the U.S. and Europe, just as there were about Iraq. But the world would be a lot safer." Quotes-end.png
From Getting Serious About Iran, by George Melloan (The Wall Street Journal, January 17, 2006) (view)