”I will do everything that is required”. Obama on Iran.

By: Ingrid Krüger

On October 7 last year, in his second presidential election debate, meeting Senator McCain, Barack Obama stated that “We cannot allow Iran to get a nuclear weapon.  (…) And I will do everything that’s required to prevent it. (…) if we can prevent them from importing the gasoline that they need and the refined petroleum products, that starts changing their cost-benefit analysis. That starts putting the squeeze on them.” Obama’s patience is not unlimited and Iran might soon be standing face-to-face with the “dire consequences” Obama talked about if Iran wouldn’t change its behavior. The text of the Iran Refined Petroleum Sanctions Act of 2009 refers to these exact statements by Obama.

The Iran Refined Petroleum Sanctions Act of 2009 was introduced as a bill on April 30 this year, but has not yet been passed. The proposed law would expand economic sanctions against Iran, specifically by punishing companies and individuals who are helping Iran’s petroleum sector. The bill is targeting those who are helping Iran maintain or expand its domestic production of refined petroleum resources, including assistance in refinery construction, modernization, or repair. Further, the bill aims to sanction those helping Iran import refined petroleum resources.

On the issue of Iran, then-Senator Obama stressed that it was necessary with direct talks with both friends and enemies. Now they have had direct talks. The question is what comes next, considering that these talks have not led to Iran “changing its behavior”, at least not in the way Obama was hinting at, but rather Iran has now announced that they will expand their uranium enrichment. So what does it take for the patience of president Obama to reach its limit? Obama might just be eager to sign the bill.

1 Response to “”I will do everything that is required”. Obama on Iran.”

  1. 1 Leif Thormudsen December 7, 2009 at 16:18

    Very Good article, Ingrid. Now let’s see if Obama will live up to the expectations of jagland’s peace prize (you, me and Kaci know that not everyone went along!)

    In a highly unusual act, Jagland defended the decision later by refuting the charge that this was in expectation of Obama’s future deeds (even though the nominations closed only 11 days after Obama was inaugurated.) Jagland mentioned two achievements:

    1) Openning to the Islamic World.
    2) Opting out of missle defense shield in Central Europe.

    The fact is that there are more US troops on moslem soil today than when Obama took over. And more lethal ordnance has been dropped on moslem land under Obama than in a comparable period last year. If that is the definition of “opening” to the Moslem world, Jagland has a point.

    And why is scrapping a missle defense plan a peaceful act? In the first ABM treaty some 40 years ago the Russians asked why should an antiballistic missle system be banned when it can only defend and never attack anyone? The US answer was that if one felt more secure against a retaliatory attack under an ABM umbrella, they would be more likely to attack first! Now does anyone fear that Poland or the Czecks are more likely to attack Russia or Iran if they had a defense umbrella? And if we reject such an insane proposition why does Jagland think that scrapping an anti-missle defense system is a peaceful act?

    On engaging Iran, Khamenei now dislikes Obama more intensely than Bush. At least Bush was honest. Obama talks “respect” when “he has a dagger hidden behind his back”, says Khamenei! Iranians could respect an honest opponent but loathe a trickster, which is what Speaker of the Parliament, Ali Larijani, has called US Policy after the failure of the IAEA proposal in the last two months.

    I think Obama will not be another Carter who continued his softness until the next election, which he lost. Obama will do a Kennedy who overcompensated for Krushchev’s initial impression (an inexperienced and idealistic young man) by going to the edge of World War III in the Cubal Missile Crisis.

    Poor Jagland! The not too distant future will bear witness to his detachment from reality!

    Leif Thormudsen

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