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Posted by wmmbb in CENTRAL ASIA, nuclear free zone., nuclear stockpiles.

The proposed EU sanctions on Iranian oil has elements of the bizarre. What can they be thinking?

Rachel Brown for The ABC reports that Iranian authorities are not taking the threat seriously:

On Tuesday Iran said it expected the EU to backtrack on the embargo and repeated a threat to close the vital Strait of Hormuz shipping lane if the West succeeds in preventing Tehran from exporting crude.

“The West’s ineffective sanctions against the Islamic state are not a threat to us. They are opportunities and have already brought lots of benefits to the country,” intelligence minister Heydar Moslehi told the official IRNA news agency.

The tone in the Islamic Republic was defiant, even sceptical.

“The global economic situation is not one in which a country can be destroyed by imposing sanctions,” Mr Moslehi said, repeating Iran’s stance that with the EU in economic and monetary crisis, it needs Iran’s oil more than Iran needs its business.

A spokesman for the oil ministry said Iran had had plenty of time to prepare for the sanctions and would find alternative customers for the 18 per cent of its exports that up to now have gone to the 27-nation European bloc.

“The first phase of this (sanctions action) is propaganda, only then it will enter the implementation phase. That is why they put in this six months period, to study the market,” Alireza Nikzad Rahbar said, predicting the embargo could be rescinded before it takes force completely.

“This market will harm them because oil is getting more expensive and when oil gets more expensive it will harm the people of Europe,” state TV quoted him as saying.

“We hope that in these six months they will choose the right path.”

The embargo will not kick in completely until July 1 because the bloc’s foreign ministers who agreed the ban at a meeting in Brussels were anxious not to penalise the ailing economies of Greece, Italy and others to whom Iran is a major oil supplier.

Robert Fisk in The Independent has a similar view concluding: Bring on the sanctions. Send in the clowns”. Israeli leaders have a long track record of accusing Iran of wanting to build nuclear weapons. Some of this history is detailed by Robert Fisk:

The Israeli President warns us now that Iran is on the cusp of producing a nuclear weapon. Heaven preserve us. Yet we reporters do not mention that Shimon Peres, as Israeli Prime Minister, said exactly the same thing in 1996. That was 16 years ago. And we do not recall that the current Israeli PM, Benjamin Netanyahu, said in 1992 that Iran would have a nuclear bomb by 1999. That would be 13 years ago. Same old story.

So perhaps the story of an Iranian bomb might help Israel. As Robert Fisk notes:

For Palestinians in the West Bank, Israel is the brutal, colonising, occupying power. But the moment Iran is mentioned, this colonial power turns into a tiny, vulnerable, peaceful state under imminent threat of extinction. Ahmadinejad – here again, I quote Netanyahu – is more dangerous than Hitler. Israel’s own nuclear warheads – all too real and now numbering almost 300 – disappear from the story. Iran’s Revolutionary Guards are helping the Syrian regime destroy its opponents; they might like to – but there is no proof of this.

Kevin Rudd, now in the eyes of some critics, the putative PM, got into the act, but then it turned out that Australia does not import oil from Iran.

RT reports on the suggestion, other wise reported by Press TV that India and China plan to buy Iranian oil with gold:

So what is going on? Pepe Escobar concludes in his article at Tom Dispatch:

t’s not at all far-fetched to imagine hardcore Full-Spectrum-Dominance practitioners inside the Pentagon riding a false-flag incident in the Persian Gulf to an attack on Iran (or simply using it to pressure Tehran into a fatal miscalculation). Consider as well the new U.S. military strategy just unveiled by President Obama in which the focus of Washington’s attention is to move from two failed ground wars in the Greater Middle East to the Pacific (and so to China). Iran happens to be right in the middle, in Southwest Asia, with all that oil heading toward an energy-hungry modern Middle Kingdom over waters guarded by the U.S. Navy.

So yes, this larger-than-life psychodrama we call “Iran” may turn out to be as much about China and the U.S. dollar as it is about the politics of the Persian Gulf or Iran’s nonexistent bomb. The question is: What rough beast, its hour come round at last, slouches towards Beijing to be born?

Pepe Escobar talks with Scott Horton on AntiWar.com.

If true, aside from the likely increase in the price of oil for Europeans in particular, the end of the Dollar as the reserve currency of the world that the schemozzle is as much an obscenity of military power as it is of an absurdity – although real people have been, and one supposes may be, murdered.


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