Over the past few months, the Iranian regime has been struggling to deal with the renewed sanctions and isolation led by the US under Donald Trump, which is part of a “maximum pressure” campaign to cajole Iran into acting like a normal country.
Even Iran admits that the US sanctions are hitting them hard, although it still refuses to come back to the table for a new deal.
This new policy on Iran, which was laid out in the 2017 National Security Strategy, has made the mullahs in Iran miserable. It’s tanked their economy, exposed their cheating on the 2015 nuclear deal, and set a clear objective of dealing with the Iranian Regime’s malign behaviour on all fronts.
And every single move from Washington only ramps up the pressure on Tehran, especially over things like human rights abuses and regional meddling.
The Regime has responded with anger and resentment, with Iranian Foreign Mohammad Javad Zarif even going after Poland for agreeing to host a conference on peace in the Middle East in February. The Regime continues to arm known terrorist groups, including Hamas, Hezbollah, the Houthi rebels in Yemen, and Shiite militias in Iraq, plot terrorist attacks in Europe and the US, and hold Western citizens hostage. Iran’s nuclear chief has even announced plans to increase uranium enrichment to 20%, something banned under the nuclear deal that it is still a party to.
James Jay Carafano, vice president of foreign and defence policy studies at The Heritage Foundation, wrote: “Meanwhile, we can expect Iran to keep probing for weakness and advantage – without provoking the kind of escalation confrontation with the West that would put Iran in a real bind. And so the Iranians will press the Europeans, make trouble in their region, name-call – and wait and see. Yet while pursuing these foreign initiatives, the Iranian government must also somehow weather domestic opposition, a weak economy and an inevitable change in leadership after Iranian Supreme Leader Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Ali Hosseini Khamenei, 79, goes to the great beyond.”
At the same time as the increased international pressure, anti-regime protests are growing by the day inside Iran, led by the organised, democratic Iranian Resistance. These are the people who have in their hands the power to change Iran for the better, so the US and the rest of the world should support the Iranian people and their Resistance, who must ultimately be the ones deciding the fate of the nation.