By AIC Honorary Board Member Thomas Pickering
Originally published in the Dallas News
The U.S. has levied heavy sanctions against Iran, seriously damaging its economy. Iran's President Hassan Rouhani recently said, "Today the country is facing the biggest pressure and economic sanctions in the past 40 years."
Those same sanctions appear intended to threaten Tehran with regime change, put additional pressure on Iran's 80 million people, drive wedges between us and our European allies and force Iran from the bargaining table. Longer term, they increase U.S. international isolation and reduce the power of the U.S. dollar and Treasury as instruments of world leadership.
Sanctions are applied to impel an adversary to seek an agreement on a problem that threatens U.S. interests. U.S.-led sanctions against Iran eight years ago combined with oil price declines and mismanagement of Iran's economy put its nuclear bomb program under stringent limits and unparalleled monitoring. The result showed an effective use of the sanctions tool.