Lost in discussions and anger between Iran and the European Union or the United States is the impact of sanctions upon ordinary Iranians. A reporter for The Independent, discussed with an Iranian printer how sanctions effects his business. “These days doing business with any country other than Russia and China is nearly impossible,” said Mustafa Ibrahimis compelled to work through middle men in Dubai in order to obtain supplies for his operation. A third wave of sanctions by foreign ministers in Europe looms on the horizon although the intensity of desire for action has been somewhat dampened due to release of the American intelligence report that downplayed Iran’s march to nuclear weapons. Accordig to Nadeer Hashemi of the University of Toronto, “the entire approach to Iran, by quarantining it, sanctioning it, and isolating it, is counterproductive. It will only hurt the Iranian people and srenthen the most authoritarian elements within the regime.”
The Bush administration insists sanctions damage the Ahmadinejad government, but the evidence is just the opposite. He is able to use the outside world’s hostility to his administration as proof the world hates Iran and the nation must remain united in the face of outside pressure. One can only wonder what might result from reaching out to Iran and ensuring its religious leaders there is genuine desire for cooperation.