US’ Formation of Iran Action Group ‘A Losing Strategy’: American Analyst

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – A senior political analyst from the US state of Illinois denounced a recent move by the Donald Trump administration to form an Iran Action Group (IAG) to raise pressure on the Islamic Republic, saying Washington’s regime change policy against Tehran is doomed to failure.

“It has been longstanding US policy for nearly 40 years - never successful and I believe it will not achieve what other US efforts failed to accomplish earlier,” Chicago-based Stephen Lendman told Tasnim in an interview.

“The policy reflects imperial America’s ugly face, targeting all sovereign independent countries for regime change, the analyst said, adding, “In the long term, it is a losing strategy.”

Stephen Lendman is a writer, syndicated columnist, activist, News TV personality, and radio show host. He currently writes for MoneyNewsNow.com and VeteransToday.com and hosts, since 2007, a progressive radio show at The Progressive Radio News Hour on The Progressive Radio Network.

The following is the full text of the interview:

Tasnim: As you know, the US government’s hostility toward Iran has recently entered a new stage. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has formed a dedicated group to coordinate and run the country's policy towards Iran following President Donald Trump's unilateral withdrawal from the 2015 nuclear deal with Tehran. Pompeo announced the creation of the Iran Action Group (IAG) at a news conference, naming Brian Hook, the Department of State's director of policy planning, as its head. What do you think about the group and its objectives and do you think that it would be able to reach its goals?

Lendman: What I call the anti-Iran Action Group for regime change is all about wanting pro-Western puppet rule replacing Iranian sovereign independence.

It has been longstanding US policy for nearly 40 years - never successful and I believe it will not achieve what other US efforts failed to accomplish earlier.

What it will do is inflict more harshness on ordinary Iranians than already - by tougher sanctions and destabilizing activities.

The policy reflects imperial America’s ugly face, targeting all sovereign independent countries for regime change. In the long term, it is a losing strategy. In a short and intermediate term, it inflicts considerable pain and suffering on people worldwide.

Tasnim: The Trump administration recently threatened to cut Iranian oil exports to zero, saying that countries must stop buying its oil from Nov. 4 or face financial consequences. Washington later softened its threat, saying that it would allow reduced oil flows of Iranian oil, in certain cases. Since oil is a strategic product and countries around the world always demand it, do you think that the US is able to carry out this threat at all?

 Lendman: The US threat to halt or greatly reduce Iranian oil shipments won’t work, at most I believe (it will be) only able to somewhat reduce them.

Washington wants Iran totally isolated for its sovereign independence and opposition to its hostile imperial agenda. It never achieved this goal before nor will it ahead I believe.

Tasnim: Trump's threat is part of his walking away from the Iran nuclear deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). He also plans to fully reinstate anti-Tehran sanctions from November 4. In the meantime, the EU has vowed to counter Trump’s renewed sanctions on Iran, including by means of a new law to shield European companies from punitive measures. German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas recently said Europe should set up payment systems independent of the US if it wants to save the JCPOA. What do you think about the EU’s role in reducing Washington’s pressures against Tehran and saving the deal?

Lendman: So far, the EU has been mostly talking with little or no action. It is largely a US-controlled colony. Will it break away and assert its independence ahead? I’ll believe it only if and when it does what it never did before.

I hope Brussels proves me wrong. The JCPOA is too important to lose. Russia and China strongly support it with firm actions. EU support has been largely rhetorical with little follow through.

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