US Policies Toward Iran to Remain Hardline
by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.org – Home – Stephen Lendman)
Since the Islamic Republic ended a generation of US imposed tyranny on the country and its people, ruling authorities in Washington have sought regime change to once again transform the nation into a US vassal state.
Looking ahead, it’s virtually certain that Biden/Harris will continue longstanding US hostility toward Tehran.
Normalized relations have been off-the-table since Iran regained its sovereign independence in 1979 —what it has no intention of relinquishing to imperial USA or any other foreign power.
On Saturday, Iranian Foreign Minister Zarif said the following:
“The US has a nature and an identity, and we have an identity too.”
“These two identities have inherent differences.”
“We represent a civilization” that’s thousands of years old.
“The US wants us to turn into another entity and abandon our civilization.”
“I never believe in tension, but I believe that we should preserve our identity.”
“This is a cultural, civilizational and national identity.”
The US has “a term that says what is mine is mine and what is yours can be negotiated.”
“This thinking may work in many parts of the world, but it does not work with Iran.”
Weeks earlier, Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh stressed the following:
“As for Iran’s defense capability, there has never been…and there won’t be any negotiation” with the US or West on this issue that’s all about wanting it weakened.
Over the weekend, Deputy Foreign Minister for Political Affairs Seyed Abbas Araqchi said the following:
“There will be no nuclear deal plus, no new agreements, and no new negotiations on the nuclear deal.”
“Iranian missiles are only reliable defense tools for Iran, and no negotiations will be held on this issue…”
“The security of the Persian Gulf can be the subject of dialogue among the regional states without foreign interference. Regional security can be discussed collectively.”
“It is the new US (regime’s) turn to make up for the mistakes of the previous (one).”
“To return to the nuclear deal, they should lift all (illegally imposed) sanctions.”
“We are ready to fulfill all of our undertakings based on the nuclear deal provided that the Americans live up to their undertakings and lift the sanctions.”
On January 22, Foreign Affairs published an op-ed by Iranian Foreign Minister Zarif, titled:
“Iran Wants the Nuclear Deal It Made”
“Don’t Ask Tehran to Meet New Demands”
The Biden/Harris regime can continued “failed policies” of its predecessor in defiance of international law and regional peace, or seek a new course to reverse its enormous damage, Zarif stressed, adding:
Returning to the JCPOA and ending war by other means “maximum pressure” will assure that Iran will reciprocate by fully complying with “commitments under the nuclear deal.”
Iran has fundamental rights under international law as do all sovereign nations.
The US and its imperial partners “must recognize those concerns rather than subscribe to the tired delusion that Iran should not enjoy the same rights as every other sovereign nation.”
“We have always made it abundantly clear that we will respond positively to any initiative for regional dialogue advanced in good faith.”
“To us, goodwill begets goodwill.”
Post-9/11 US preemptive wars against invented enemies raped and destroyed one nation after another — with no apparent end to its rapaciousness in prospect.
Because of US aggression and flooding the Middle East with heavy weapons, “Iran’s neighborhood has become the most militarized region in the world,” Zarif stressed, adding:
“During the Trump presidency, Washington took its predilection for conflict directly to Iran’s door.”
“Last January, the United States assassinated General Qasem Soleimani, making an already fraught situation in a region plagued by terrorist violence all the more unstable.”
“The murder removed a leading commander in the fight to push the so-called Islamic State (or ISIS) and other militant groups back from Iraq and Syria—and it added an unforgivable crime to the already long register of US transgressions against Iran.”
While decades of US mass slaughter and destruction cannot be undone, the Biden/Harris regime can continue the same imperial agenda or go a different way.
It can reverse Trump’s unlawful abandonment of the landmark JCPOA or keep the US in noncompliance.
It can respect the rule of law or continue breaching it flagrantly.
It can keep waging war by other means on 83 million Iranians or respect their right to life, well-being and safety.
It can lift illegally imposed sanctions on Iran or leave them in place, perhaps add new ones.
US pressure against Iran accomplished nothing but failure.
“(P)ressure against Iran has time and again produced—and will always produce—the exact opposite of its intended result,” Zarif explained.
In 2005, the US and its partners demanded that Iran “relinquish the right to enrich uranium” for its legitimate nuclear program, followed by Security Council sanctions.
In response, “Iran increased its number of centrifuges from 200 to 20,000 and produced more than 17,000 pounds of enriched uranium of 3.67 percent concentration and more than 440 pounds of 20 percent enriched uranium,” said Zarif.
After Trump regime hardliners imposed illegal “maximum pressure” on Iran, it “expand(ed) (its) stockpile of low-enriched uranium from 660 to 8,800 pounds, and…upgrad(ed) (its) centrifuges from the older IR-1 models to the far more powerful IR-6.”
In response to Trump regime war on Iran by other means, Tehran significantly increased its nuclear capabilities — lawfully.
It acted in full conformity with JCPOA Articles 26 and 36.
They permit Iran to “cease performing its commitments” under the deal if another signatory breaches its obligations.
“If the new US (regime) hopes to alter the current trajectory, it needs to (choose a different) course” from its predecessor, Zarif stressed.
It should begin by “unconditionally removing” illegally imposed Trump regime sanctions.
In response, Iran will reciprocate positively in good faith.
The JCPOA is unrelated to Tehran’s legitimate right of self-defense that’s vital because of US/NATO/Israeli regional aggression.
“Separate from the nuclear issue, Iran has always been willing to discuss the problems plaguing our region,” Zarif explained, adding:
“But the peoples of the region, not outsiders, must resolve these issues.”
“Neither the US nor its European allies have the prerogative to lead or sponsor future talks.”
“Rather, the Persian Gulf region needs an inclusive regional mechanism to encourage diplomacy and cooperation and to lower the risk of miscalculation and conflict.”
Iran supports creation of a regional forum for dialogue and conflict resolution initiatives.
Zarif: “HOPE is not a blueprint for the future.”
“(A)ny permanent arrangement has to be arrived at collectively by all regional powers.”
Iran supports “a strong, stable, peaceful, and prosperous community of countries, free from the impositions of regional or global hegemony.”
Respect for national sovereignty and territorial integrity is fundamental.
It’s the foundation on which to pursue other objectives.
“The window of opportunity for the new US (regime) will not be open forever,” Zarif stressed.
The ball is very much in the Biden/Harris court. It can seek improved relations with Iran by complying with its legal obligations or continue failed Trump regime hostility.
Much depends on choices it makes ahead for good or ill.
I have no illusions about domestic and geopolitical policies pursued by both right wings of the US one-party state.
If past is prologue, Biden/Harris will at least largely continue longstanding US war on Iran by other means.
Instead of doing the right things, it’ll go the other way against Iran and other nations free from US control.
Its domestic agenda will favor privileged interests exclusively — at the expense of ordinary Americans to be exploited, not served.
It’ll make a bad situation worse at home and abroad instead of improving things.
It’ll continue longstanding US hardline dirty business as usual at the expense of world peace, stability, equity, justice and the rule of law.
VISIT MY WEBSITE: stephenlendman.org (Home – Stephen Lendman). Contact at email@example.com.
My two Wall Street books are timely reading:
“How Wall Street Fleeces America: Privatized Banking, Government Collusion, and Class War”
“Banker Occupation: Waging Financial War on Humanity”