As we near this year’s United Nations General Assembly, a major buzz in the media and various think tanks on both sides of the Atlantic is how to move forward with Iran.
Looking at the past year, the mullahs’ regime has escalated uranium enrichment to 4.5 percent and increased its stockpile of the material needed to produce nuclear weapons. More recently, Iran has gone further in violating the 2015 nuclear deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), by launching advanced centrifuges and there is talk of a cascade of 164 centrifuges that significantly escalates the stakes.
In other spheres, Iran’s Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) has increased its fueling of terrorism through Middle East allies and proxies, and others across the globe. These measures have left Europe with no choice but issuing unprecedented sanctions against the mullahs’ Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS) for foiled terror/assassinations plots across the Green Continent.
Furthermore, Tehran’s rampage across the region is proof of this regime showing its true colors. The IRGC and its affiliated proxies targeted oil tankers in the Sea of Oman, launched missiles at neighboring countries, went vocal with threats against global shipping, and shot down a U.S. surveillance drone flying in international airspace, a clear violation of international law.
As a result, Iran’s mullahs are proving what dissidents and various Western governments have been saying for years and decades: this regime represents the single most dangerous source of threat endangering our world today.
The crucial question lies in how we respond to such a threat.
For decades we have witnessed European governments and various U.S. administrations practice a dangerous policy of appeasement vis-à-vis Tehran, chasing the naïve mirage of engagement empowering the non-existing “moderates” in this regime. The result has been gross human rights violations inside Iran, and utter havoc across the region and beyond through the mullahs’ unbridled support for extremism, terrorism and fundamentalism. This goes parallel to the ruling regime destroying Iran’s resources while their drive for ballistic missiles and nuclear weapons.
Unfortunately, many have yet to learn the highly important lesson of World War II: Former UK Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain’s appeasement of Hitler led to the loss of over 60 million people across the globe. And yet today, certain leaders in Europe continue to push for engagement with Iran’s ruthless mullahs.
It is very important to understand that all officials in the Iranian regime are cuts from the same cloth. The mullahs are known for their brutality and all officials have been vigorously vetted to forever maintain their loyalty to the regime, and its survival.
Looking into the future, the sole realistic policy is to adopt a firm stance of strength in order to prevent the mullahs from continuing their horrendous wrath of terror in all perspectives. This includes imposing sanctions targeting the regime’s officials in all ranks and entities from top to bottom; employing a full embargo of Iran’s oil, gas and petrochemicals sector with the knowledge of petrodollars fueling the IRGC’s terrorism and ballistic/nuclear drive; blacklisting the regime and its entities as terrorist organizations; and closing Iran’s embassies to prevent their spying and terror plot preparations in foreign countries.
This approach provides a solution other than the appeasement or war talking points constantly pushed forward by apologists and others openly lobbying for Tehran. All the while, such voices refuse to acknowledge the wars Tehran has already launched through its proxies in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen.
Appeasement, presented with the acceptable word of “engagement,” is the pseudo-name of surrendering to the demands of a murderous, fascist regime. This will not prevent war, as Chamberlain’s appeasement of Hitler failed to prevent the latter’s deadly ambitions. Appeasement will only kick the war can down the road and raise the price of preventing such a war with each passing day.
Surrendering before the wrath of Iran’s regime will not avoid another war. In fact, it will further embolden Tehran’s ruling mullahs to launch new wars and raise the demand levels. This is kneeling before the mullahs’ ongoing drive to obtain nuclear weapons and literally turning one’s back to the regime’s future crimes that will most likely be even more aggressive. Saturday’s drone attacks – claimed by the Iran-backed Houthis of Yemen – targeting two large oil facilities in eastern Saudi Arabia is one hint.
The path forward demands a position of strength and standing firm against this atrocious regime. Not relaxing sanctions, but raising the level and broadening the international scope of sanctions against Tehran. Not turning our back to human rights violations across Iran, but condemning them and conditioning all future relations – political, economic and social – with Tehran on ending its atrocities both inside the country and abroad.
The mullahs do not represent the great country of Iran with its wonderful culture, the great faith and a long-lasting civilization that is craving to finally be free.
Supporting the Iranian people starts by each government making a once-and-for all decision of ending any previous appeasement with the mullahs, denying them any trade to prevent the currency being used to fuel Tehran’s malign activities, and voicing clear support for the Iranian people’s protests, seen as their aspiration for freedom.
With one country after another joining this movement, the mullahs’ rule will come to an end, and the true Iran with its people will rise to be free and proud among the nations of our world.