Saturday, October 14, 2006

Internal Sanctions

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“Guess what Kaveh told me,” I say to Keivan.


“He said that out of 140 countries, Iran ranks 133rd in foreign investment.”

“Wow. 140th must be North Korea,” Keivan responds.

Aside: I cannot find a link to this, so maybe it is not true. According to the Heritage Foundation, Iran does rank 156th out of 157 countries on economic freedom.

On our way home, Keivan mentions this to the taxi driver who laughs and says, “Isn’t that just great?”

“Why does Iran even need sanctions?” I say. “They create their own. There is not need for outside help.”

“I hear that even the Chinese are having a hard time making a profit here,” Keivan says.

“Iranians think that they are doing foreign companies a favor by letting them do business in Iran and then they just bleed you dry. No foreign company can survive here.”

“They are wolves,” Keivan says.

To illustrate our point, we have an acquaintance who has been working on a 3-month project for the past three years. “Every time I come back to Iran I think that I will finish the project in these three months. But it never gets done. I don’t know what happens.”

Every few months, he reports, a new Iranian contractor appears onsite. They freely tell him that they greased a few palms to get the contract and then proceed to blackmail his mother company for a bigger monthly payout. “You can’t keep your contract without a local partner,” they tell the foreign project managers. Suddenly they disappear: just as suddenly as they showed up.

So you see, Iran has its own very effective sanctions regime.

1 comment:

Mr. Smarterthanyou said...

This is why I want to throw something at the TV when Bush (whom I normally support) or his flunkies talk about sanctions, and when they act like they care that China and Russia oppose.

We MUST stop Iran from getting nukes, even if that means first strikes on their sites and the capitol.

But with such a pro-american population, there must be a way to take out the mullahs and let the people take over without a huge invasion. But how?

Is there some sort of structure that could become an interim gov't if we chopped the head off of the current one? Are there enough expats living in the US that could be run through boot camp and sent back ala Bay of Pigs, only this time without a Democrat cutting them off at the knees?