Sanctioning Iran: Anatomy of a Failed Policy
SANCTIONING IRAN examines the past, present and future of US sanctions policy against Iran. Sanctions have become an increasingly important plank in US foreign policy: according to Richard Cheney, former US Secretary of Defense, over 70 countries, and two-thirds of the world's population, now come under their influence. Hossein Alikhani details the process by which the noose has steadily tightened on US-Iran trade since the overthrow of the Shah and the hostage crisis of 1979-80. The sanctions have remained unilateral, and the inevitable effect has been that non-US companies - mainly Western European - have simply taken on the business the Americans were forced to give up. Washington's response to this was an attempt to impose, extraterritorially, US legislation on third-country 'sanction breakers'. But outcry from allies which the US could not afford to alienate made this approach untenable. Official US hostility to the regime in Tehran - nurtured in Washington by a vocal and powerful pro-Israel lobby - has made it difficult to soften the sanctions policy. But an increasing number of US observers now believe that the policy does nothing but exclude US business from a lucrative area of trade. SANCTIONING IRAN is both a detailed exposition of the legislation and a thorough critical analysis of the policy as a whole. It also comprehensively documents the important source materials and assesses the impact of sanctions on Iran. This is an essential guide for anyone, businessman, policy-maker or academic, seeking to understand the context and substance of the last 20 years in US-Iran relations.