Chief of the conservative Kayhan newspaper has, in a Farsi editorial published in the daily, weighed in on the latest developments regarding the nuclear deal Iran signed with six world powers back in March 2015 known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).
Shariatmadari first underlines the significance of resolving the country’s economic woes, and then refers to the JCPOA as one of the main barriers to the Islamic Republic’s economic prosperity, stressing the need for the government to pull out of it.
The full text of the analytical piece follows.
1- Supporting Iranian products, if coupled with measures stressed by Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei, can definitely solve many of the economic problems facing the country. The measures include utilizing untapped domestic potential, seriously dealing with uncontrolled import of goods, countering the smuggling of commodities from borders to points of sale – not only at borders, of course – restructuring the Iranian Standards Organization in such a way that it changes from a “neutral and impartial monitor” to a strict organization to prevent the production of low-quality items, getting the Judiciary not to remain passive and deal with economic corruption and launch a tough campaign to counter large-scale bribery, removing the bureaucracy and red tape facing entrepreneurs and producers, reducing the rate of interest on deposits in banks and channeling the flow of the cash worth over Rls. 14 trillion into production. Let’s not forget that many banks are involved in the disastrous job of running enterprises using this huge amount of cash, and the number of banks and branches of banks d0ing he same job is increasing day by day. It is worth mentioning that based on the figures by the World Bank, the number of bank branches in Iran per capita is more than the figure in countries such as Germany, Britain, Norway, Austria, etc.
It goes without saying that if these measures and dozens of other urgent actions are not adopted, the motto of supporting Iranian products which is supposed to be the outcome of these measures will not get off the ground. Moreover, there is another factor at play here, which can, and has, so far, been able to function as a brake on economic development and has had a destructive role in that regard. Read on!
- Maybe in the first glance, the perception that the JCPOA is one of the key hurdles to economic progress seems funny. Nevertheless, there is plenty of evidence that shows the issue is not the nuclear case as it may seem so. The point is that the JCPOA was drawn up with the aim of paralyzing the Islamic Republic of Iran before it was imposed on the people and the establishment. As long as the JCPOA is used as a lever by the rival, Iran will face numerous problems on the path to economic development. Therefore, the enemy should be stripped of this dangerous tool in order for us to weather economic problems and realize the motto which was prudently chosen by the Leader as the motto of the current Iranian Year. And now that Washington has not lived up to its commitments and breached the agreement on numerous occasions, it is the best time and opportunity to withdraw from the JCPOA and put an end to the costly disaster imposed on Iran and its people.
The JCPOA is a golden opportunity for the US. The Americans would not even dream of seeing Iran sign the disastrous document. Contrary to the exaggeration by some Iranian statesmen, the nuclear deal has brought the country almost nothing, but disaster and loss. Therefore, the Americans will never pull out of the JCPOA and easily lose the numerous advantages they have gained.
I wish the respected president and some other authorities involved in the nuclear agreement would, instead of praising the JCPOA so much, explain in a few words what they have got, except a bunch of future promises, in return for the concessions they generously gave the other side?! And what the JCPOA brought the country except pure loss? If they know of any achievements that the deal has brought the country, well, why don’t they tell us? And if the result of using the facilities and capacities of the country over the past four years has been “almost none,” which has been so, indeed, then why do they insist that they should continue to move on the same path? Maybe no one expect them to apologize to the Iranian nation, but people’s logical expectation is that those involved in the JCPOA rectify their wrong approach and change their path.
- Trump’s back-to-back threats that he will pull out of the JCPOA is just a bluff aimed at gaining more concessions. The point is that this “lunatic-looking” man knows well that they have given us no concessions in exchange for the many concessions they have received under the agreement. Not only have they not lifted the sanctions, which were the main objective of the nuclear talks, but they have added dozens of news sanctions to the previous ones. Moreover, they put forward a new issue ever now and then, and demand new concessions.
It is worth mentioning that the snapback mechanism, that the Americans have skillfully incorporated into the JCPOA and will use as the Achilles heel of Iran, is not only limited to Articles 36 and 37 of the JCPOA which concern “the settlement of differences.” Rather, our friends on Iran’s nuclear team have accepted a law – INARA – under which the “suspension of sanctions” must be extended by the US president every four months or the suspended sanctions can be reinstated! Our friends may tell us that the INARA law is an act passed by US Congress and has nothing to do with the JCPOA! In response, we should say that the law concerns Iran sanctions, and our nuclear team could have demanded the law be annulled as a precondition for the JCPOA, but unfortunately they did not!
In addition to the golden advantages that the US has gained from the JCPOA, the US uses the INARA law of the jungle to exert economic pressure on Iran. How? Read on!
- Almost one or two months before the four-month deadline expires, Trump threatens not to waive the sanctions unless Iran accepts the conditions he demands. And following that:
- The forex market falls into disarray and the greenback rallies over Trump’s possible refusal to extend the suspension of sanctions. After the sanctions are suspended once again – and we know that sanctions have always been waived so far and will be waived given the great benefit that the JCPOA has for Washington – the value of the dollar does not drop as much as it had increased. And since the exchange rate for the dollar has, unfortunately, turned into a yardstick against which to set the prices of goods and services, we witness a wave of price hikes and public discontent every four months.
- Whether sanctions will continue to be suspended or not depends on Trump’s decision every four months, so it is obvious that no foreign investor would accept the risk of sanctions possibly not being suspended.
- European officials get involved with a “good cop” role (!), and recommend Iranian officials accept the conditions desired by the US in order to protect the JCPOA. One of those conditions is that Iran stops its missile activities! (i.e., we will turn into an easy prey for the Western-Hebrew-Arab Triangle)! Or stop supporting the resistance front (i.e., allow Takfiri terrorists to make their way into Iran and massacre our people)! And what is ridiculous is that the EU says it slaps sanctions on Iran in order to meet Trump’s demand and convince him to stay in the JCPOA.
- Liberals inside the country – some of whom have the stigma of treason during the post-election US-Israeli chaos in 2009 in Iran – blame Washington’s possible withdrawal from the nuclear deal on Iran’s missile industries and Tehran’s support for the resistance front! And they pretend to have forgotten that if it weren’t for Iran’s missiles and backing for the resistance front, Putin would be brushing the shoes of ISIS terrorists now!
- To put it in a nutshell, when the JCPOA is a disaster for us and a golden document for the US, common sense says that Trump has no intention of pulling out of the JCPOA. With that in mind and given the conclusive and documented evidence which was mentioned above and which is acknowledged by many statesmen today, we can easily draw the conclusion that pulling out of the JCPOA would be a catastrophe for the US and a golden opportunity for us and will remove one of the key impediments to the realization of this year’s motto and the adoption of the measures associated with it. Our withdrawal from the JCPOA will turn Trump’s roars into begging.