Iran has been subjected to another round of sanctions by the United Nations Security Council. What was surprising in the vote on Wednesday were the opposing votes, those of Brazil and Turkey, close allies of the US, Iran’s bête noire.
The vote should be seen in light of another development, the widespread criticism of Israel by many countries.
Should these be seen as a harbinger of deeper political changes in West Asia? Or merely the inability of the US to intervene in that region effectively while it is preoccupied elsewhere?
In any case, sanctions are feeble medicine. They have not deterred Iran in the past and will not do so now. In fact, if anything, they will inflame nationalist sentiment in Tehran. Iran’s nuclear ambitions are clearly problematic when seen against the persistent political turbulence in West Asia. But there are better ways to address the problem.