By Jubin Katiraie
As Iran and North Korea are collaborating closely on a number of military and nuclear issues, it only makes sense to impose equal sanctions against both nations, according to a human rights activist.
Heshmat Alavi wrote an op-ed for the Raddington Report, entitled Sanctioning the Terrible Twosome, in which he advised that their deep collaboration makes it hard to deal separately with the threats that they pose.
He writes that the collaboration is obvious from even a passing glance; why else would Iranian officials attend North Korean nuclear launches, how else would North Korea get technology that they could ill-afford.
Alavi wrote: “Pyongyang and Tehran have both sought nuclear weapons as insurance for their notorious regimes. Enjoying enticement by US administrations since the 1990s, North Korea has reached its objective, at the expense of its starving people – and the economy more broadly. Iran, whilst seeking nuclear capability, began feeling the heat of international sanctions and escalating public anger, which forced it to trade a curbing of its nuclear program in return for sanctions relief. What goes unnoticed, however, is how agreements signed by the international community with these two regimes provide a green light to the ruling autocrats to pursue the oppression of their own populations.”
Decades of appeasement of the two regimes from the international community makes a military confrontation unlikely, but all the time that we stand still, North Korea is effectively holding South Korea and Japan hostage, while Iran is destabilising the Middle East and providing support to terrorists.
What can be done?
Stopping concessions and enforcing sanctions
All out war is not a popular option for anyone, but concessions from the rest of the world have allowed deep problems to pervade, especially in Iran where Westerners are regularly taken a hostage in order to gain favour from the other country.
Alavi wrote: “Iran has continued its practice of abducting American citizens and sentencing them to long prison terms. A situation in which Kim Jung Un was provided more inducements to come to the negotiating table – as in Iran’s case – could possibly result in further abductions, assassinations and more tens of thousands of political prisoners held in facilities so large they are visible in satellite images. Concessions have already provided Iran with a green light to expand its domestic crackdown and meddling abroad. The definition of insanity, famously, is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results…War is neither needed nor welcomed. An international consensus to impose crippling sanctions on the regimes of Iran and North Korea is necessary.”
Reviewing the nuclear deal
As noted by Nikki Haley, the US ambassador the UN, Iran is already in violation of the nuclear deal, the US just needs to recognise that the deal is not in the US’ national security interests.
Alavi said: “The response Tehran receives from the international community, with the US at the helm, is of vital importance. The failure of previous US administrations to take any meaningful action to prevent the growth of such a dangerous nexus leaves us with the circumstances we face today… If history is to teach us any lesson, it is that of rapprochement rendering nothing but death and destruction. If we seek an end to the current nuclear standoffs, all parties must further set aside their short term interests and think for the better good of all.”