ANALYSIS: Are sanctions on Iran a sign of shifting US policy?

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The enactment of a comprehensive sanction bill and designating the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) as a Specially Designated Global Terrorists (SDGT) by US lawmakers targeting Tehran’s military and terrorist arm, is a significant signal of shifting US policy in reaction to Iran’s destabilizing role in region. The regime is beginning to realize that the Obama era is over.

This alteration in US policy acts as a catalyst and facilitator of change inside of Iran. However, the main factor and grass roots of change are inside Iran.

This pivot point for a policy change has an accelerating role and is influenced by the ineradicable behavior of the Islamic Republic and on the other hand the will of people’s resistance to achieve in such policy.

Now, the question remains on the Iranian regime’s reaction and choice of direction to the new sanction bill. In such crises, the Iranian regime has a track record of buying time (delaying tactic) and taking one step forward and one step backward, as witnessed in previous nuclear negotiations.

If Obama’s policy of appeasement and concessions was decisive, Tehran would have been forced to step further back from their evil approach. But this did not happen, and the regime was constantly revived through newly provided funds and sanction relief. Instead, Tehran expanded its destabilizing role and terrorist activities in the region.

The adoption of new sanctions so far has put Iran in a shocking stage. If these sanctions are seriously applied and extensively implemented, Tehran will be pinned to make an ultimate decision.

Retreating or challenging

Iran faces widespread and profound social dissatisfaction, parallel to economic insolvency and serious crises. It understands the language of force and lacks the ability to challenge. The most likely option for Tehran is to kill time and continue delaying.

To prevent the regime’s highly cheating skills, the best policy is to enforce and maximize pressure. Tehran is a fundamentalist and rebellious regime without any legitimacy. It is incapable in changing its behavior. According to Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, changing the regime’s behavior will ultimately bring the regime down.

Therefore, there will be no transformation or reform from such a regime. The Iranian people are keen towards overthrowing this regime and the comprehensive and extensive sanctions on IRGC is aligned and in support of their will for regime change.

The social conditions in Iran have come to a boiling point and the opposition movement has the potential and an upper hand. The path forward is social rebellions to overthrow this regime.

During the 2009 uprisings Iranians were chanting: “Obama, Obama are you with us or the mullahs?,” as they called in vain for international support.

The policy shift

The Iran policy shift has its effect inside the regime and they have been vocal about it. In this regard the “Resalat daily”, regime’s controlled paper, in its July 31, 2017 issue, pointing to the change in the international affairs towards the Iranian regime states: “Behind the sanctions belies a boycott campaign. There will be an overthrowing in a soft, sophisticated and silent way,” a recent piece in the state outlet Resalat daily reads.

Ahmad Jannati, Chairman of the Guardian Council, also raised deep concerns. “[Khamenei’s] most important concern is the fear of overthrow,” and “the enemy is seeking regime change from within,” he said.

Iran won’t have the same fate as Iraq and Syria since there is an organized democratic and powerful opposition. This alternative is the National Council of Resistance of Iran, a democratic platform which the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) is the main force. On July 1st the NCRI demonstrated its strength and abilities by gathering hundreds of thousand supporters in Paris, all seeking regime change in Iran.

The NCRI demands a boycott in international diplomatic and economic relations and expelling Iranian regime representatives from international assemblies. The IRGC and affiliated proxies must also be evicted from the region.

The appeasement policy

On a side-note, the Iranian regime feeds off its lobbies’ propaganda and advocates promoting yet again the appeasement policy, aimed at justifying and legitimizing beneficial relations with Iran. The regime’s lobby argues the international community should cooperate with Tehran as there is no alternative other than war. This absurd propaganda is promoted while the IRGC has been in war in Syria, Iraq, Lebanon and Yemen.

In same regards, US Secretory of States Rex Tillerson recently insisted on cooperation with Russia to tackle terrorism and end the Syria war.

“Iran’s military influence, the direct presence of Iranian military forces inside of Syria, they must leave and go home, whether those are Iranian Revolutionary Guard forces or whether those are paid militias, foreign fighters that Iran has brought into Syria” he said.

All evidence shows the only path to peace and stability in Iran and the Middle East is to support the NCRI and pressure Tehran through extensive sanctions.

The NCRI issued a statement welcoming the new law imposing sanctions against Iran and the Revolutionary Guards, emphasizing its immediate implementation meticulously without exception.

Furthermore, NCRI President-elect Mrs. Maryam Rajavi underscored these sanctions must be implemented immediately against all individuals and entities involved in executing and torturing the Iranian people, especially those directly involved in the 1988 massacre of over 30,000 political prisoners.

Rajavi also emphasized that the people’s right of resistance for regime change must be recognized. She also views these collective ultimately resulting in stability and peace in the region.