Politics

As Iran’s Threat Rises, Where Are the Europeans?

Iran skyline gulf persian oil marketsIn late 2019, Americans are overwhelmingly concerned about only one foreign policy issue: Iran obtaining nuclear weapons. Notably, Americans strongly prefer a non-military solution, but understand a military solution may be necessary. The real question is – where are the Europeans?

On December 29, after a series of Iranian-backed attacks on locations with US personnel in Iraq and Syria, the US advanced a twin strategy. The state imposed new sanctions, part of a “maximum pressure” campaign, and the military struck five Iranian Hezbollah sites in Iraq and Syria.

Big picture, Iran is testing the Western alliance. Throughout 2019, Iran and terror-dispensing surrogates shot down a US drone, mined and attacked international shipping in the Gulf, struck a Saudi refinery, and armed promotors of civil war in Yemen, Syria and Iraq. As such, Iran is an unrivaled sponsor of global terror.

Closer to home, Iran oppresses its own people mercilessly, punishing basic liberties, from free speech and worship to association and dissent. Over the past two months, Iran turned its terror machine inward, authorizing live fire to kill protestors in 100 cities. Corroborated reports indicate Iranian Islamic leaders killed up to 1500 citizens – for seeking basic freedoms.

Finally, on the nuclear weapons front, after the Trump administration withdrew from a deal authorizing nuclear weapons after a delay, Iran responded by accelerating weapons grade uranium enrichment, widening the nuclear weapons program, and ramping up international terror.

The unreported irony is in recent data. Iran’s leaders are struggling to maintain an accelerated nuclear weapons program, international terror projection and order at home – albeit brutally.

Iran is under pressure from Trump’s economic sanctions – a non-military way to compel Iran to abandon nuclear weapons and international terror, or flip the unpopular, oppressive regime.

The right next step would be for the European Union – if it wants a non-military way out of this darkness – to join the Trump administration and impose economic sanctions, rather than continuing to profit from robust trade with this dangerous, oppressive, terror-dealing state – possibly forcing a military solution.

Here is key data. According to a November 2019 Hill-Harris poll, 84 percent of American voters are “concerned about Iran obtaining nuclear weapons,” a bigger number than concerned about North Korea, China, Turkey or any other foreign policy issue.

The Hill-Harris breakdown is revealing, with 89 percent of Democrats, 85 percent of Republicans and 79 percent of Independents evincing serious concern. At the same time, a Gallop poll shows 78 percent of voters favor a non-military solution to stop Iran’s nuclear ambitions, with 42 percent consenting to military options if non-military options fail.

Ironically, while European leaders criticize America – and strenuously resist military force to blunt Iran’s nuclear weapons advance – they refuse to join the US in sanctions against Iran.

Thus, while the US has minimal trade with Iran, providing medicines and basic life-preserving aid, the EU feasts at the Iranian troth – supporting internal repression, enabling finance of international terrorism and accelerating Iran’s push for nuclear weapons.

Numbers tell the story. According to reported data, “the EU is Iran’s largest trading partner,” chased only by China and the United Arab Emirates. Moreover, the EU is supporting Iran’s bid to join the World Trade Organization, no preconditions. The moral hypocrisy is profound.

The EU has devised a special “instrument in Support of Trade Exchanges,” allowing EU trade with Iran to skirt US sanctions and even advancing the idea – to spite the US, support Iran or justify its own behavior – of “urging Chinese and Russian counterparts to do more to support economic ties with Iran.” The EU – same states as NATO – is dead set against the US.

The irony, of course, is profound. If Iran acquires nuclear weapons, they are likely to be used swiftly, directly or as a blackmail across the Middle East and hitting ballistically reachable targets, before even turned on the US. Europe would be a big loser, and in short order.

If used in the Middle East against Saudi Arabia, Israel, Syria, Iraq or another nation, the refugee outflows to Europe would be enormous – unprecedented. The requirements of NATO states to respond would be enormous. If used against the EU, outcomes would be catastrophic.

The right answer right now – even before this time – is for EU countries, if not China and Russia, to join the US in applying “maximum pressure” through non-military sanctions to halt Iran’s push for nuclear weapons, sponsorship of terror globally, and human rights violations.

This logical answer, which would forestall or eliminate the need for tactical or strategic use of military responses by the US or NATO to halt Iran’s nuclear weapons, terror and brutality, is unified sanctions, the EU joining the US in holding Iran accountable.

Unfortunately, the EU is disunified, inconsistent and short-sighted. The EU appears more interested in opposing US leadership, indulging economic appetites, and justifying itself through alliance with oppressive China and Russia – than stabilizing the future with sanctions.

The most recent uptick in US sanctions, instability inside Iran, and need for tactical strikes to stop Iranian attacks on US personnel and allies mean just one thing: This is the time for EU egos and appetite to retreat, and EU nations to join the US in a non-military approach to stopping Iran’s malignant behaviors.

The real question is – where are the Europeans? If they want a non-military resolution to expanding Iranian disorder, threats and destabilizing behaviors, this is the time to join the United States. That said, do not count on it. EU egos, profits and resistance to US leadership run deep. Iran’s destabilizing pursuit of nuclear weapons and terrorism can be stopped – and most Americans, and probably most European voters, want it stopped – but EU leaders must step up.

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J. FARLEY
9 months ago

THE UNITED STATES SHOULD NOT GIVE ANY FOREIGN AID TO ANY COUNTRY THAT DOES BUSINESS WITH IRAN AND ALSO LIMIT TRADE WITH COUNTRIES THAT DO BUSINESS WITH IRAN. WE MUST MAKE IT CLEAR THAT ANYONE WHO SUPPORTS IRAN AND NORTH KOREA THAT AMERICANS WEALTH WILL ONLY BE SPENT WITH COUNTRIES THAT SUPPORTS FREEDOMS AND PEACE LOVING NATIONS

PaulE
9 months ago

The Europeans are busy trying to find ways to circumvent the sanctions placed on Iran by President Trump. Most of the leaders of Europe are largely into appeasement of potential adversaries (Iran, Russia, China, etc.). This has been the go-to strategy going back several decades and usually ending in lots of needless deaths of European lives. Don’t expect Europe to suddenly have a moment of clarity and realize that they are only enabling a hostile power bent on destroying or enslaving as much of the world as they can get away with. The author was involved in politics long enough… Read more »

Floyd Looker
9 months ago

The EU wants to retaliate against American leadership in the world. By supporting Terrorism they hope to see the downfall of the United States. Because of the tremendous influx of Muslims into the EU, they are also vulnerable to attacks against them by Islamic Terrorists who they are feeding, sheltering and giving free medical aid and education to at the expense of their own people. Americans who look to the EU nations for guidance and example are ignorant of why there is a United States of America.

Alan Sylvester
9 months ago

The Europeans are reluctant/afraid to be active against Iran’s activities because of the high number of Muslim immigrants which are attempting to assert their influence in their society. The Muslim system intends to dominate any system that is not according to their Koran…..period. There is a message in all this for we Americans.

Jack
9 months ago

And the Democrats want to put us back in the EU and let them make our policies for us? No thanks.
KAG!!! 4 MORE YEARS!!! TRUMP 2020!!!

Peter Sarjeant
9 months ago

Question: Where are the Europeans? They are running scared, ALL mouth, and NO action.

VikkiC
9 months ago

If it wasn’t for the US, most of these European countries would be speaking German. However, most of the Europeans who fought in WWII are now dead, and the younger ones never learned the lessons. As one commenter said, appeasement is the action of the day. But you won’t find any Dems bucking that system – Obama’s apology tour proved that. Americans need to wake up and realize we are on our own when it comes to defending our country. You can’t negotiate with terrorists, and that’s all the Iranian government is, and will ever be. Why worry about climate… Read more »

Anita Carlin
9 months ago

Can’t trust the EU globalists

Jack
9 months ago

The Europeans are were they have always been, looking to see how to get things from the US for free, their welfare mentality. We can not count on them at all. Europe should be punished for their non-actions. As far as Iran “punishing basic liberties, from free speech and worship to association and dissent.”, It is bad and unfortunate for the people, the ideals are American and not Persian or Islamic. They need to do as our forefathers did and revolt.

Alfonso Bedoya
9 months ago

I need to be educated. Since it appears that we are now oil-independent and really no longer need oil from the Middle East, just why do we still remain in Iraq, other than to show a presence there via our Embassy? It seems that countries such as Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan need us far more than we need them, and other than what should be the European concern about a mass exodus from the Middle East should a full-scale war again take place, why should we stay there? Is it because we are concerned about Iran’s nuclear puffery? If so,… Read more »

Stephen Russell
9 months ago

Read of a EU Defense Force but seen no action or on news feed or news, Just talk no action?
I say leave NATO & reduce our $$$ for.,
Let EU cover for EU.
Guess EU caved into Iran too much over decades.

Pete from St Pete
9 months ago

Most of the major politicians that run the European Union hate the United States and President Trump out of one human emotion: jealousy. Our economy is booming and our immigration problems temporized (at least until the next Democratic president). The European economy slogs along in a socialist fog and they lost control of their borders in the name of feckless social justice. Their bigwigs sit in their cushy well paying jobs and instead of freeing up their over regulated economies ala Trump, they continue along their same old path of self destruction. They trade their soul by dealing with obvious… Read more »

T Taylor
9 months ago

ALL IN OR ALL OUT! EVERYONE PAYS THEIR FAIR SHARE. WE MUST REMAIN RESOLVED TO FIGHT IRAN.

Ed J
9 months ago

Freedom is NEVER free. It is always bought and paid for with blood in every generation. Our nation has already bailed out the asses of Europe twice during the 1900s — during World War I and World War II at great cost of American lives and solely for the sake of freedom. If Iran obtains nuclear weapons, they will almost assuredly use them against us or our allies (or both) in due time. It will then be up to America to bail out the asses of Europe again from the Iranian terror. Barring some change in Iran’s government and their… Read more »

Wayne
9 months ago

All of Europe and even some of Great Britain will let us go it alone and piss and moan aginst us, but then will cry like babies to come with our young men and equipment to gain their freedom back.

Anita C
9 months ago

Don’t trust the EU globalists let the EU fight for themselves.

Phillip
9 months ago

Once again Europe is saying to the US come and fight for us. It has been going on that way since WWI. If nukes weren’t involved the US could say not this time. Damned nukes change everything.

Steve
9 months ago

They trade with evil for profit , get their gas from the commies , cry like babies to pay a measly 5 percent on their protection , tell their citizens we will exit Brexit five years ago now , that Europe ?? Looks like they are not far from the Dark ages again .

John K
9 months ago

Did you mean “the EU feasts at the Iranian ‘trough'” ? troth means good faith; fidelity.
Trough is a manger or “feeding trough”. I guess if you’re doing business with them it would require “good faith”.

Roz
9 months ago

Most of the male EU leaders wear a Kotex and the EU female leadership, a jock strap, no spine, no forethought, only think of themselves today only. They will always want to lean on the US to bail them out, but support the A team? Oh no, that would not be politically expeditious for them. Bunch of Neville Chamberlain appeasers they are.

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