The United Nations Security Council voted on Wednesday to impose new economic sanctions
Iran for its nuclear program. The resolution, which the U.S. pushed for,
was approved by a vote of 12 to 2, with Brazil and Turkey voting
against. The vote is seen as a victory for the U.S. and others because
Russia and China, which had earlier threatened to veto
measure, both joined in support. What will the sanctions accomplish? And
what can we learn from today's UNSC vote?
- What They're
Designed to Do The L.A. Times' Borzou Daragahi explains, "Advocates of the latest set of
sanctions say the penalties will pressure Iran by limiting its ability
sell oil, buy gasoline or expand its energy infrastructure. They say the
new sanctions also are aimed at persuading world banks and companies to
avoid business with Iran's Revolutionary Guard, the military branch
that now has the upper hand in Iranian politics, business and foreign
- Too Weak to Change Iran Commentary's Noah Pollak writes, "The new
sanctions have been advertised by the Obama administration as a
demonstration of world unity against the Iranian nuclear program. In
reality, they are so weak and so lacking in international support that
they do nothing more than showcase the fecklessness of Obama's 'smart
diplomacy.'" The Atlantic's Jeffrey Goldberg adds, "I
don't think that the new sanctions ... will do anything to stop Teheran
from continuing its march toward aggressive nuclearization, which has,
of course, potentially tragic consequences.
- Just the
Beginning The Washington Independent's Spencer Ackerman predicts,
"This will not be the last effort at sanctioning Iran. U.S. and
European officials have talked
for months about pivoting off a successful Security Council vote to
cobble together a coalition of major Iranian trading partners to
tighten the economic screws on the Iranian leadership. Those include the
United Arab Emirates, South Korea, Japan, the European Union, China and
Russia. But expect conservative voices to continue a push for a total
oil embargo on Iran, as a
congressional measure to impose additional gas sanctions was
deferred for the vote."
- U.S. Congress Reacts Politico's Laura Rozen reports, "several
members of Congress praised the Obama administration's diplomatic
success in New York, while some vowed to pursue more vigorous U.S.
unilateral sanctions targeting foreign entities involved in Iran's
refined petroleum sector. ... [Rep. Howard Berman (D-Cal.), chairman of
the House Foreign Affairs Committee] and Sen. Chris Dodd (D-Conn.) head
up a conference committee reconciling Iran sanctions legislation that
has already passed both houses of Congress."
Clinton: Toughest Sanctions Ever Foreign Policy's Preeti Aroon reports
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's reaction. "I think it is fair that
these are the most significant sanctions that Iran has ever faced. And
the amount of unity that has been engendered by the international
community is very significant."
- Secondary Outcome: Turkey's
'Slide Toward Iran' National Review's Michael Rubin writes, "It is
a blessing that Turkey is on the United Nations Security Council. For the first several years of
Erdogan's premiership, Turkish diplomats tried to be all things to all
people, and, as so often happens with American diplomacy, we were
willing to accept insincere Turkish statements in closed doors rather
than listen to what the Turkish leadership was saying publicly. Today,
Turkey decided definitively to side with Iran."
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