Extend the Arms Embargo on Iran

(Foundation for Defense of Democracies) Richard Goldberg and Mark Dubowitz - In line with a request issued Monday by 387 members of the U.S. House of Representatives, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is preparing a diplomatic campaign to block one of the most damaging concessions enshrined by the Iran nuclear deal - the lifting of the international arms embargo on Iran this October. It makes little sense to lift an arms embargo on a regime that has steadily increased its violent behavior over the past year, ranging from cruise missile strikes on Saudi oil infrastructure to mine attacks on tankers in the Persian Gulf and rocket attacks on American and British forces in Iraq. The first phase of Pompeo's plan is to propose a new UN Security Council resolution to extend the arms embargo on Tehran indefinitely. Russia and China are expected to block the proposal. The Pentagon reports that Beijing and Moscow are planning to sell Iran fighter jets, main battle tanks, attack helicopters and modern naval capabilities. Tehran is likely to proliferate some of this advanced weaponry to Hizbullah, Shiite militias in Iraq, Hamas and Islamic Jihad in Gaza, and the Houthis in Yemen. In phase two, Pompeo intends to use the self-destruct - or "snapback" - mechanism of the nuclear deal to block the sunset of the arms embargo, removing the need for an extension. This mechanism gave all original parties to the nuclear deal - including the U.S. - the right to snap all UN sanctions and embargoes back into place if the Iranian regime ever breached its nuclear commitments. Such breaches are now indisputable. Richard Goldberg, who served at the U.S. National Security Council, is a senior advisor at the FDD, where Mark Dubowitz is chief executive officer.

2020-05-08 00:00:00

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