The Guardian | Richard Dalton: The US has declared economic war on Iran: after having pulled out of the UN security council-endorsed nuclear deal in May, the Trump administration is now unilaterally combating the right of the rest of the world to engage in legal trade with the Islamic Republic.
This policy is based on the claim that Iran is a major security threat to the American people. But that is transparently exaggerated. And the statement by Mike Pompeo that sanctions will be used to ensure Iran “behaves like a normal country” is unintentionally ironic.
The US is not a “normal” country. Complicity in a horrifying aggression against Yemen and supporting the extension of Israeli colonisation of Palestine are not acts of normality. The truth is that all who intervene in the Middle East’s regional struggles, including Iran, are doing what states always have done – trying to influence outcomes in the direction of their real or perceived interests.
Nevertheless, the US has determined that its stance towards Iran should be a belligerent one. Will that reap any strategic rewards?
As UK ambassador to Tehran in 2005, I received the country’s rejection of the first attempt by the west to strike a nuclear deal, alongside my French and German colleagues. Analysts often go wrong because we think that the fights to come will be like the fights of our day, but this is what I believe may happen.