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January 20, 2006

Iran Relocating Financial Assets.

This can't be good:

Iran is trying to avoid U.N. censure or sanctions over its nuclear program, which it says is entirely peaceful. The West suspects it of secretly seeking nuclear weapons.

Talk of shifting foreign assets indicated how seriously the Islamic Republic is taking the threat of U.N. sanctions.

"We transfer foreign reserves to wherever we see as expedient. On this issue, we have started transferring," Sheibani told the ISNA students news agency.

I've got a feeling the we're about to see a perfect storm here. The U.N. can't impose sanctions without getting Russia and China on-board, and even if it did, odds are most sanctions wouldn't make any difference without those two nations playing a part. About the only effective sanction available is a Western refusal to purchase Iranian oil, a step that to many in Europe and Asia will feel like cutting off one's nose to spite their face.

National Review Online's Stanley Kurtz, talking about the WaPo's Charles Krauthammer latest editorial on Iran, made a good point in the Corner earlier this week, one that people should bear in mind as we move forward in this, the economic phase of the game:

After 9/11, some criticized the president for not asking civilians to sacrifice. Well, this is the moment of testing. The most effective Iranian retaliation to a military strike would not be military. It would be what Krauthammer describes: oil shock and a significant blow to the world’s economy. So the question is, are we willing to sacrifice economically for the sake of keeping the bomb out of the hands of Iran and its terrorist allies? If not, I fear America’s cities will someday pay a far higher price.
That's the question of the day: do we, and the West at large, have the guts to endure an economic shock to stop Iran? Because if we don't, we may find ourselves enduring a far worse shock down the road.

Fun times, eh?

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posted by Dave From Garfield Ridge at 09:29 AM

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