Afro-Asia, Global South Reject Boycott of Iran

Despite American assertions that Iran is “internationally isolated,” it turns out that the boycott of that country is a solidly Northern Hemisphere phenomenon and only partially successful even there. The US-led sanctions on and boycott of Iran have largely been rejected in Africa,-Asia and Latin America. Punishing sanctions on Iran are a Euro-American affair with little buy-in outside Anglophone North America and the European Union.

International Boycott of Iran

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43 Responses

  1. Someone want to remind me again what this is all about? I thought it was the opinion of every Western intelligence agency that Iran wasn’t pursuing nuclear weapons.

    • Jesse:
      The US wants sovereign access to the Caspian Sea and its maritime space… so they figure REGIME CHANGE is their best bet (with a side of extra virgin sweet not-olive oil).

    • It’s all about bullying others into submission, then occupying them when they refuse to bow down.. Expanding NATO eastward and tempering the rise of China and Russia.

    • Jesse,

      I agree with everyone else that this episode is clearly not about the Iranian nuclear program, but rather, fits in perfectly with a pre-existing narrative that I always apply to every situation, regardless of the specific details of the case, and which I needn’t ever provide plausible evidence to support, because it’s so obviously and universally true.

      I, for one, am very impressed with myself for, once again, having the courage and insight to understand that my Grand Theory of Everything explains this, too.

      I mean, seriously, the United States being concerned about the Iranians getting a nuclear weapon? Yeah, like that would ever happen. There’s no way that fear of a nuclear Iran could actually be the driver here, because everyone in the American military and foreign service community loves the idea of the Iranian government having nuclear weapons. It must be something else.

      • Really Joe? You think the US is worried about Iranian nukes? Just like the US was worried about Iraq’s WMD? In both cases the experts were/are saying there is no evidence for these fears. Experts don’t know anything, keep believing the chicken hawks, they are surely motivated by moral intentions.

        Those truly interested in a middle east nuclear free zone, should be pushing Israel to give up their massive nuclear arsenal and not pretend that the US has justified reasons to be scared of Iran.

        • No, I think the US is actually worried about an Iranian nuclear program, as opposed to Iraq, when the WMD program was a mere pretext.

          In both cases the experts were/are saying there is no evidence for these fears.

          I think you would do well to go back and check your facts, because the UN inspectors are saying something very different this time around. I suppose the International Atomic Energy Agency doesn’t count as experts, though, and ceased to count as experts the moment they said something you didn’t want to hear.

          Thank you for so aptly demonstrating my point about the specific facts of the situation being no match for a deeply-beloved Universal Narrative That Explains Everything. This must be exactly like Iraq, because it’s just gotta be.

        • Experts don’t know anything

          No, of course not. Internet commenters and magazine writers know everything.

          What would nuclear technicians, scientists, and people who spent their careers studying nuclear proliferation know about anything, amirite?

          Best just to check your gut when it comes to a tricky question of science and international affairs. Experts…pfffft! Who needs ’em?

        • Oh Joe. Please show me an IAEA report that says Iran has a nuke, or that they even have conclusive proof that Iran is working on a nuclear weapon? Only a week ago Chairman Of The Joint Chiefs Of Staff, Gen. Dempsey, said “that the Iranian regime has not decided that they will embark on the […] effort to weaponize their nuclear capability”.

          The most recent report, which represents the consensus of 16 intelligence agencies, indicated that Iran is pursuing research that could put it in a position to build a weapon, but that it has not sought to do so.

          Or are you arguing that the US should invade anyone with maybe the potential to build a bomb? Also, you were very quiet about my idea for Israel to give up their nuclear stockpile. Surely Israel is the cause for any nuclear arms race, if there is one.

          BTW, you misquote me and interpret what I said in exactly the opposite way it was intended. Perhaps if you had quoted the full sentence you would have been able to comprehend the simple meaning.

        • Nice little bit of weaseling around, the way you go from “has a nuke” – unadorned, no adjectives, to “has conclusive proof that…”

          You’ve moved those goal posts quite a way from your original “the experts were/are saying there is no evidence.”

          So, why, exactly, do you imagine that any of the evidence you quoted is supposed to rebut what I wrote about the motives of those who are concerned about the Iranian nuclear program?

          Or are you arguing that the US should invade… my idea for Israel to give up their nuclear stockpile

          I haven’t written anything about what the US should do, or about what Israel should be, because I’m not writing about a policy. I cling to this very unfashionable idea that first we should get our facts right, and then come up with a policy to address them.

          See, this is your problem, the same problem presented by the neocons in the runup to the Iraq War: you base your opinion about the factual question not on the facts, not on the evidence, not on the opinions of the people who know a whole hell of a lot more about the question than you, but, as I said, on whatever position is most convenient for your pre-determined policy preference.

          “BTW,” I didn’t misunderstand you even the slightest bit. Your point is incredibly simple – even simplistic – and poses absolutely no challenge to comprehension whatsoever.

          I disagreed with it, which is quite a different thing from misunderstanding.

      • Joe,

        Just for kicks, can you tell us which paragraphs (they’re all numbered) in the IAEA’s November 2011 report lead you to conclude that Iran has engaged in any nuclear-weapon development work since 2003.

        I’ve read that report with very great care four times now. While I originally felt as you feel (or claim to feel), I’ve changed my mind. And so I’m curious to know why you have not.

  2. It has to do with the Western intelligence re: no Iranian nuclear weapons being incompatible with Western sabre-rattlers fantasies.

    • I see that we in the North West are not participating in the boycott ( YAY!!) just the sheep though the midlands and Lara Giddings in the south surprises there – the sheep have always been opposed to trade with the middle east.

  3. Why cannot the “greens” in this map get up on their hind legs and do something about ending the Israeli occupations of the Golan Heights and, oh yes, Gaza and the West Bank including (said for clarity) occupied East Jerusalem?

    You know, just by speaking truth to power (USA, anglophone pro-settler-colonial commonwealth, and EU) about international law and human rights?

    Would it help to say, “Hurry up, please, it’s time!”?

  4. American Backyard has shifted to Northern neighbor Canada, the European Union & Australia.

    America should know that the world is much bigger and has changed a lot in the last quarter century.

    You cannot fool the world second time by drumbeats of “Iran’s Nuclear Bombs” like Iraq’s “WMD’s”.

  5. What it’s all about?

    I think it comes under the heading of “This is what we are all geared up to do, there’s billions of dollars in motion, and a few of us are going to get promotions and bonuses and bragging rights for being ‘righteously serious’ and awarded ‘policy positions of great power’ in the next Great Venture for our skills at ‘managing the Battlespace and that other kind of ‘Change’…”

  6. The map could do with some tidying up, unless Todd Palin has had his way and Alska got Independance without me noticing!

    Sweeden has been in the EU for almost 20 years, Rumania and Bulgaria for 5, Greenland is part of Denmark for issues like this.

    But overall message is clear,

  7. America and their evil allies can never fool the world again, Iran is too big for them to played with hahahaha.

  8. This map can’t be accurate. Saudi Arabia and UAE are green, yet both are supporting sanctions. Saudi is raising oil output to offset less Iranian oil in the market.

      • Thanks for the clarification, but what about Saudi? By actively lobbying countries to buy oil from them instead of Iran and increasing output to offset Iranian oil, isn’t in effect the same on Iranian oil sales?

  9. I think white indicates the country so designated has never gotten crude oil from Iran so there’s nothing to boycott.

  10. Interesting map but several discrepancies/errors as noted by others. What would be helpful is in addition to the legend for red and green, could you, Prof. Cole, or whoever brought the map to your attention, or colored in the various countries, please explain what the many many un-colored countries are thinking/doing about the sanctions and boycotts, if anything. For us peaceniks, the map is a great talking point but cries out for a little more accuracy and detail. Thanks

    • White ones I could not find evidence about and/or not important to Iran trade.

      Green ones have refused to apply boycott or sanctions measures beyond those voted by UNSC

  11. Would you be kind enough and provide more information about this map? I could not find it in What does it mean by boycotting Iran? oil? financial transactions? Based on what facts the countries are divided to greens, reds and whites? Official statements? De facto performances?
    There is no doubt about the big ones like Russia, China, India etc, but how much impact does have the other ones in business with Iran?

  12. I know Pakistan is trying to ink a gas pipeline deal with Iran, and is currently in talks to barter wheat and rice to Iran in exchange for iron ore and other Iranian products in order to bypass the difficulty caused by the sanctions against Iran’s Central Bank.

  13. I hope this map is not a foreshadowing of the combatants in World War III. I see no awareness in America that, like Germany in the early 20th century, we are making more enemies than we can handle.

    • >we are making more enemies than we can handle

      That is really the nut. When international reputation has ben disgraced, the diplomatic arm has been weakened, and allegiances to ideological or political myths whose day has passed are maintained, the illusion of military might is the only thing that can keep ‘patriotism’ alive. Militarism, economic expansionism, increasing blowback, and decreasing strength are the only predictable outcomes.

  14. I just noticed the other pattern in this map.

    The countries against Iran are generally the capitalist ones that still have bad economies. The economically strong regions right now seem to be backing Iran: China, Turkey, and Latin America. The old, declining white societies against everyone else.

  15. I note from the map that the northern half of Chile is colored green, indicating its refusal to boycott Iran. But according to the map the southern half of Chile has yet to take a stand on the boycott. A divisive issue?

  16. What I’m getting from this map is that the countries that consume the most oil are the “only” ones honoring the boycott, while countries that consume much less oil are not.

    It’s sort of like those 2000 Electoral College maps that the Republicans loved so much, because they showed these huge, mostly-empty areas colored red.

  17. This map is a joke.
    Not only is it factually incorrect (see below for multiple examples), it’s based on the nonsensical idea that if a country states that it won’t abide by US/EU sanctions that means that (a) its policy will be identical to its statements, and (b) its ability to trade with Iran will not be affected by US/EU sanctions.

    Angolan state oil company Sonangol has pulled out of a $7.5 billion natural gas project in Iran – why is Angola white?
    link to

    Japan may cut Iranian crude oil imports by a more-than-expected 20 percent as it seeks a waiver from U.S. sanctions – why is Japan green?
    link to

    UAE, Qatar Stop Trade Finance to Iran Over Sanctions – why is the UAE green?
    link to

    • UAE annonced billions in electricity deal with Iran. Not boycotting.

      Japan makes polite noises but has asked for exemption from US unilateral sanctions, as has S Korea

      Avoiding US third party sanctions is not the same as actively boycotting

      Nice trolling though, as though the map’s point couldn’t survive your minor and largely inaccurate points

      • Pointing out facts which don’t fit into your description is not “trolling”.
        And your attempt to rebut the facts amounts to a total failure:

        “UAE annonced billions in electricity deal with Iran. Not boycotting.” – What’s your source for this? Press TV? There’s no confirmation from the UAE for this supposed deal, which was announced solely by the Iranian side. You can’t be taken seriously as long as you keep relying on Iranian news sources.

        “Japan makes polite noises but has asked for exemption from US unilateral sanctions, as has S Korea” – you do realize that according to the legislation passed late last year, countries will be granted exemptions once they reduce their imports from Iran by a substantial amount, yes? Or maybe you don’t…

        “Avoiding US third party sanctions is not the same as actively boycotting” – as long as they’re unable to do business with Iran, it amounts to the same thing.

        • Oh, yes, UAE electricity deal with Iran announced by notorious Persian rag

          link to

          Seeking an exemption from boycotts would generally be recognized in rational discourse as declining to join the boycott.

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