How Will the Conflict between the US and Iran End?

U.S. President Donald Trump sharply criticized Iran. He accused Tehran of “supporting terrorism.” How far can Washington go in its confrontation with Tehran? What kind of losses can both sides suffer from? Political expert Georgy Bovt gives his explanation to these and other questions on this topic.

After quitting the nuclear agreement, the United States can come up with some new sanctions against Iran. The relations between the two countries will revert to the situation prior to the moment when this agreement was concluded. Moreover, as I understand it, this agreement is not even fully implemented yet as some parts of the sanctions against Iran that should be canceled are still in effect.

Now Trump will present his case to the Senate, which has 60 days to make a decision. Technically, the procedure requires the approval vote of 60 senators to withdraw from the agreement.

I’m not sure that Trump will get these 60 votes. As far as I understand, it’s possible to use a simplified procedure, but according to the rule of international treaties, diplomatic decorum requires the qualified majority of votes.

What is going to happen next? The U.S. will come up with some new sanctions that will be imposed on Iran: financial, military, etc. It should be noted that Trump makes demands on Iran that are not described in the nuclear agreement. For example, he makes demands about the missile development program, although the missile development program was not regulated in any way by a nuclear agreement with Iran. This is new to the agreement; thus it is theoretically possible for the U.S. to not leave the agreement, unilaterally submit a request about the missile development program and then unilaterally impose sanctions.

We should expect a slight jump in oil prices if sanctions are imposed on Iran. Washington faces no risks or consequences, which is exactly why it manages these issues so easily, because Iran is not a threat to the U.S. – neither economically nor militarily.

Iran will certainly suffer from losses. Even though there is an opinion that Iran has lived for many years under sanctions and has not suffered, this is not totally true.

Tehran has lived under sanctions and could not buy spare parts for Boeing planes, which Iran operates. This increased the number of aviation accidents at this time; there were also other consequences. Therefore, it would be wrong to say that the sanctions did not have an impact on Iran.

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