President Trump prepares to show the world, yet again, that he is not the “feckless Obama” they’re used to. He plans to reimpose sanction against Iran.
“Iran, and its economy, is going very bad and fast! I will meet, or not meet, it doesn’t matter – it is up to them!”, Trump tweeted on Saturday. Letting Iranian officials know that if they want to U.S. cooperation they have to be willing to play ball. America isn’t the open wallet – open borders Nation they have come to know!
Iran is struggling, both financially and with the ongoing protests.
The Trump administration on Monday is set to reimpose the first batch of Iran sanctions since the U.S. withdrew from the nuclear deal.
The more significant tranche of sanctions, including on oil sales, won’t come back into force until November.
But Monday’s action fires a shot across the bow, telling businesses, European allies and Iran that President Trump is serious about keeping the United States out of what he’s called the “worst deal ever negotiated.”
Trump announced in May that he was withdrawing the United States from the 2015 accord with Iran, Germany, France, the United Kingdom, Russia and China.
The deal, negotiated by the Obama administration, lifted sanctions on Tehran in exchange for curbs on its nuclear program.
Rather than immediately reimpose sanctions in May, the Trump administration gave companies doing business with Iran two “wind-down” periods.
Since the May announcement, administration officials have left the door open to sanctions waivers, but have been working to convince businesses to cut ties with Iran and have warned they won’t hesitate to sanction even those in allied countries.
The more significant wind-down was a 180-day period that ends Nov. 4. Sanctions that can be put back into place on that date target Iran’s energy and banking sectors.
Monday ends another, 90-day period after which the U.S. can sanction transactions with U.S. dollar banknotes; trade in gold and precious metals; direct or indirect sales of graphite, raw or semi-finished metals and Iran’s automotive sector.
Additionally, licenses for exporting commercial aircraft to Iran, as well as related parts and services, are set to be revoked.
Most of the sanctions in the first batch are “fairly modest stuff,” said Richard Nephew, former principal deputy coordinator for sanctions policy in the Obama administration’s State Department.
“In terms of practical impact, they’ll be more symbolic than anything else,” added Luke Coffey, director of the Allison Center for Foreign Policy at the conservative Heritage Foundation.
Nephew highlighted the automotive sanctions as one of the more significant in the group since Iran had ambitions for auto exports to become a bigger part of its economy.