Iran continues to boldly resist the economic blockade and military encirclement by the US. It is fighting to defeat the US imperialists’ attempts to isolate Iran, following the US’ unilateral abrogation of the JCPOA and the re-imposition of sanctions.
The JCPOA (officially called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action) was negotiated with Iran in July 2015, by the US together with the UK, China, France, the EU, Russia and Germany. The agreement had imposed a 15 year moratorium on Iran’s nuclear program, in return for the lifting of economic sanctions. On May 8, 2018 US President, Donald Trump announced the unilateral withdrawal of the US from the JCPOA despite the fact that the UN nuclear inspection agency, the International Atomic Energy Agency, has certified that Iran has remained in compliance with the agreement. Following its abrogation of the treaty, US re-imposed sanctions on trade with Iran. Now, it is further tightening the sanctions.
The US has continued to put immense pressure on Germany, France and Britain, who are still signatories of the JCPOA, to discontinue their trade and business with Iran. In August 2018, following its abrogation of the treaty, the Trump administration re-imposed sanctions preventing all countries doing business with Iran from doing any business with the United States.
In November 2018, the United States officially reinstated all sanctions against Iran that existed before the JCPOA. Following the expiry of an initial 6 month waiver period, on 2nd May 2019, the US launched its latest round of provocations against Iran. On that day, it announced the withdrawal of the waivers that had allowed China, South Korea, Japan, India and Turkey to continue purchasing oil from Iran. Simultaneously, it imposed a new round of sanctions aimed at halting all exports of Iranian iron, steel, aluminum and copper.
Some European companies and banks are in the process of withdrawing from their trade with Iran fearing US sanctions. The European powers, in pursuit of their own interests, have expressed their opposition to the US sanctions and its war preparations against Iran. The contradictions between the US on one hand and the European powers and Russia and China on the other, over their stand towards Iran, are sharpening.
The economic strangulation of Iran has been combined with military encirclement and threat of imminent war. The aim is to bring maximum pressure on the Iranian government and people to submit to US dictate.
Step by step, the US is escalating its economic and military offensive against Iran. It was reported in May this year that the US is planning to send 120,000 troops to West Asia.
The US and its allies have been staging one provocation after another to justify unleashing of war. The latest is the allegation, reported on May 12, that Iran had sabotaged two Saudi oil tankers and two other vessels off the coast of the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Saudi authorities have claimed that the oil tankers were going to pick up Saudi oil to transport to the US. Going by the US’ record of staging provocations against countries that it seeks to paint as the perpetrators of aggression, it cannot be ruled out that the US and its allies carried out the sabotage of oil tankers themselves and then shifted the blame onto Iran and its allies. This was clearly being done, in order to drum up justification for war. Over the last month, the US has been dispatching fresh contingents of missile batteries, assault ships, aircraft carriers and B-52 bombers in the Persian Gulf region, in the Red sea and in Qatar.
The government of Iran has denounced the military build-up by the US and threats to its sovereignty and to peace in the region. It has denied any involvement in the sabotage of the oil tankers. It has accused the US and its allies in the Middle East, Saudi Arabia and Israel, of being responsible for the provocations. It has rejected the US threats with militant defiance, while declaring its intent to keep peace in the region. The message it has given to the world is that “Iran does not seek war, but is not afraid of one either”.
Ever since the victory of the Iranian revolution in 1979, which overthrew the tyrannical rule of the US backed Shah of Iran, the US imperialists have never let up their efforts to regain their lost foothold in the region. One of their primary aims is to gain control over Iran’s vast oil and gas resources. The US has done everything possible to pressurize Iran to give up its sovereign right to pursue its own economic and political course, free from external imperialist interference. It has been building a military coalition of states in West Asia, to carry out regime change in Iran. It has armed and instigated its allies, Israel and Saudi Arabia, to step up their attacks and provocations against Iran. The latest threats and provocations against Iran are an escalation of this ongoing pressure on Iran.
To justify their attacks on Iran the US imperialists and their allies have been systematically spreading the lie that Iran’s nuclear program is a “danger to world peace”, just like they spread the lies about Iraq having “weapons of mass destruction” to justify their war of aggression there.
US imperialism has a long and dirty history of carrying out covert false-flag operations, with the aid of its principal allies in the region, Israel and Saudi Arabia, in order to justify its military build-up in the region. It has a long and dirty history of spreading disinformation in order to justify its wars of aggression and occupation of other countries and carrying out regime change.
The US war on Iran is not merely economic and diplomatic. Iran has faced cyber-attacks. Its scientists have been assassinated, its ballistic missile program sabotaged. It is the target of fake news and disinformation about its past nuclear activities and present-day links to terrorism. It is a country under siege.
Iran has repeatedly declared that its nuclear enrichment program is purely for peaceful purposes, a fact certified by international agencies. It has pointed out that the biggest stockpile of nuclear weapons is in the hands of the US imperialists. The Israeli state, which has displaced the Palestinian people from their homeland and continues to commit the worst atrocities on them, has also been armed to the teeth with nuclear weapons, with the full support of the US imperialists.
The Iranian government is boldly defying the threats and pressure of the US and its allies. On May 8, 2019, as part of its attempts to safeguard its interests against the renewed threats, pressures and sanctions imposed by the US, Iran issued an ultimatum to the remaining signatories of the JCPOA -- France, UK, Germany, China and Russia -- that it would resume uranium enrichment at a higher grade within 60 days unless they take measures to allow Iran to export its oil and access financial markets. The spokesman of the Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) of Iran has clearly stated that their country will not engage in any negotiations with US “as long as there is no change in its behavior, and his country’s rights are not respected”.
Iran’s steadfast resistance to the threats and pressures of the US imperialists and their allies is a source of inspiration to the peoples of other countries of West Asia who desire to be free from the oppressive rule of imperialist backed regimes. These regimes are fully collaborating with the US imperialists to attack and destroy Iran. The US and these reactionary regimes falsely accuse the patriotic anti-imperialist people of their countries to be “Iranian agents”.
Iran has every right to defend its national sovereignty and interests against US aggression. The US provocations against Iran are completely unjustified and must be vigorously opposed by all countries and peoples who are fighting in defence of their freedom and independence, in defence of their right to determine their own economic and political course free from imperialist dictate.