My Tasnim News Agency Interview on the Iran Action Group

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My Tasnim News Agency Interview on the Iran Action Group

by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.orgHome – Stephen Lendman)

TNA is privately operated in Iran. It interviewed me a number of times before on US policies toward the Islamic Republic.

The so-called Iran Action Group is a Trump regime initiative for forcefully transforming the Islamic Republic into a US vassal state.

No Iranian threat exists, other than its sovereign independence, its government refusing to bow to Washington’s will. 

Tehran strongly opposes US-sought regional dominance by violent means – in cahoots with Israel and despotic Arab regimes.

Trump’s political and economic war on Iran, notably his JCPOA pullout, reimposition of sanctions, and other destabilizing activities leave no room for dialogue.

Washington can never be trusted under Republicans and undemocratic Dems. Its dirty hands are behind targeting all sovereign independent countries for regime change – by naked aggression, color revolutions, or other coup d’etat tactics.

TNA titled my interview “US’ Formation of Iran Action Group ‘A Losing Strategy,’ ” the Q&A below:

Tasnim: As you know, the US government’s hostility toward Iran has recently entered a new stage. 

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has formed a dedicated group to coordinate and run the country’s policy towards Iran following President Donald Trump’s unilateral withdrawal from the 2015 nuclear deal with Tehran. 

Pompeo announced the creation of the Iran Action Group (IAG) at a news conference, naming Brian Hook, the Department of State’s director of policy planning, as its head. What do you think about the group and its objectives, and do you think that it would be able to reach its goals?

Lendman: What I call the anti-Iran Action Group for regime change is all about wanting pro-Western puppet rule replacing Iranian sovereign independence.

It’s been longstanding US policy for nearly 40 years – never successful, and I believe it will not achieve what other US efforts failed to accomplish earlier.

What it will do is inflict more harshness on ordinary Iranians than already – by tougher sanctions and destabilizing activities.

The policy reflects imperial America’s ugly face, targeting all sovereign independent countries for regime change. 

In the long term, it is a losing strategy. In the short and intermediate term, it inflicts considerable pain and suffering on people worldwide.

Tasnim: The Trump administration recently threatened to cut Iranian oil exports to zero, saying that countries must stop buying its oil from Nov. 4 or face financial consequences. Washington later softened its threat, saying that it would allow reduced oil flows of Iranian oil, in certain cases. 

Since oil is a strategic product and countries around the world always demand it, do you think that the US is able to carry out this threat at all?

Lendman: The US threat to halt or greatly reduce Iranian oil shipments won’t work, at most I believe it’ll only be able to somewhat reduce them.

Washington wants Iran totally isolated for its sovereign independence and opposition to its hostile imperial agenda. It never achieved this goal before nor will it ahead, I believe.

Tasnim: Trump’s threat is part of his walking away from the Iran nuclear deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). He also plans to fully reinstate anti-Tehran sanctions from November 4. 

In the meantime, the EU has vowed to counter Trump’s renewed sanctions on Iran, including by means of a new law to shield European companies from punitive measures. 

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas recently said Europe should set up payment systems independent of the US if it wants to save the JCPOA. 

What do you think about the EU’s role in reducing Washington’s pressures against Tehran and saving the deal?

Lendman: So far, the EU has been mostly talking with little or no action. It’s largely a US-controlled colony. 

Will it break from its longstanding subservience to Washingon and assert its independence ahead? I’ll believe it only if and when it does what it never did before.

I hope Brussels proves me wrong. The JCPOA is too important to lose. Russia and China strongly support it with firm actions. EU backing has been largely rhetorical with little follow through.

Washington’s imperial agenda threatens sovereign independent countries and countless millions of people worldwide.

It’s preemptive first-strike nuclear policy could launch unthinkable war with these weapons by accident or design – the ultimate nightmare scenario.

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Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman was born in 1934 in Boston, MA. In 1956, he received a BA from Harvard University. Two years of US Army service followed, then an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in 1960. After working seven years as a marketing research analyst, he joined the Lendman Group family business in 1967. He remained there until retiring at year end 1999. Writing on major world and national issues began in summer 2005. In early 2007, radio hosting followed. Lendman now hosts the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network three times weekly. Distinguished guests are featured. Listen live or archived. Major world and national issues are discussed. Lendman is a 2008 Project Censored winner and 2011 Mexican Journalists Club international journalism award recipient.