Can Economic Sanctions Ever Work?

As the United Nations considers instituting economic sanctions against Iran for its nuclear development program, the United States has decided to end sanctions against the government of Myanmar because they failed to have any impact on that nation. Ironically, Burmese opposition leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, backs the American decision to end sanctions and attempt to engage in discussions with the thugs who run Myanmar. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton offered to continue sanctions for the moment, but “we will be willing to discuss the easing of sanctions in response to significant actions on the part of Burma’s generals that address the core human rights and democracy issues that are inhibiting Burma’s progress.”

In a nutshell, this means, American sanctions are not working because China and India have extensive economic relations with Burma and don’t give a damn about human rights. Sanctions can not work until all major players agree on such a policy. Such is the state of the modern world.