Thursday Sep 05, 201312:29 PM GMT
Pharmaceutical terrorism: Zionist-devised US sanctions bar medicines from Iran
Mon Feb 18, 2013 7:38PM
By Yuram Abdullah Weiler
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The legal conclusion appears inescapable. Based upon the above definition taken from its own laws, by imposing its Zionist-devised sanctions against Iran, the United States is committing an act of international pharmaceutical terrorism. But Manoucher’s parents already know this, as do the 8,000 Iranians with similar blood diseases, as well as the millions of Iranians suffering from kidney diseases, cancers, multiple sclerosis and other life-threatening diseases."

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“The policies Iran is pursuing are unacceptable, and until Iran’s leadership agrees to abandon this dangerous course, we will continue to use tough and innovative means to impose severe economic and financial consequences on Iran’s leadership.” - U.S. Secretary of the Treasury, Timothy Geithner.


The United States has declared war on Iran - economic war by means of sanctions which threaten the lives of Iranians who are forced to depend on Western-manufactured pharmaceuticals to fight cancer and other life-threatening diseases. The goal of the ever-escalating U.S. sanctions against Iran may very well be armed conflict, with sanctions merely a method, to quote former U.S. Secretary of War Henry Stimson, of “how we [the U.S.] should maneuver them into the position of firing the first shot.”

Initiated by the Zionist lobby AIPAC in 1995, the U.S. sanctions, which arguably constitute an act of war, fall under the auspices of the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Terrorism and Financial Intelligence (TFI), originally established by the Bush administration to combat terrorist financing. Sanctions are now managed by David S. Cohen, undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence; Daniel L. Glaser, assistant secretary for terrorist financing; and, Adam J. Szubin, director of the office of foreign-asset control, all bureaucrats with careers spanning the administrations of several U.S. presidents. This troika of tyranny, referred to as “America’s sanction cops,” has been working for almost ten years with the U.S. Congress, under constant pressure from the Zionist regime, to design ever tougher sanctions against Iran.

According to Geithner, “The harsh consequences of funding terrorism have succeeded in deterring donors across the globe.” Unfortunately, the sanctions have also succeeded in deterring Western pharmaceutical companies from undertaking business transactions for medicines greatly needed in Iran, despite the Washington regime’s official, but not legally binding, verbiage to the contrary:

“The U.S. Government’s commitment to facilitating humanitarian engagement with the Iranian people is manifest in its longstanding policy to authorize exports or re-exports of humanitarian goods, such as agricultural commodities, medicine, and medical devices, to Iran,” states the Office of Foreign Asset Control, U.S. Department of the Treasury.

Indeed from a legal standpoint, the Iran Freedom and Counter-Proliferation Act of 2012 Section 1244 (e), seems very clear in its humanitarian exception for medicine:

“The President may not impose sanctions under this section with respect to any person for conducting or facilitating a transaction for the sale of agricultural commodities, food, medicine, or medical devices to Iran or for the provision of humanitarian assistance to the people of Iran.”

However in reality, the complexity of the U.S. sanction regimen and the severity of the penalties, which range up to fines of USD $1 million and imprisonment up to 20 years, have discouraged the profit-hungry U.S. pharmaceutical manufacturers from risking their bottom right corners to do what is morally right. In one instance, a representative from an Iranian pharmaceutical firm flew to Paris with documentation confirming the legality of a business transaction only to be told by the French banker, “Even if you bring a letter from the French president himself saying it is OK to do so, we will not risk this.”

Iran, whose pharmaceutical sector amounts to some USD$3 billion per year, imports roughly 30% of its medication, and is relying increasingly on China and India as U.S. sanctions close the door to business with American and European drug firms, whose exports to Iran fell 30% in 2012. In some cases, finding substitute drugs to fight certain diseases, such as hemophilia, cancer or multiple sclerosis, is impossible because heavily guarded patents make them unavailable except from Western sources. The net result for patients in Iran is that it may be virtually impossible for them to obtain critical live-saving medications, which means effectively that the U.S. sanctions have pronounced a death sentence upon them.

Manouchehr Esmaili-Liousi, a young 15-year-old boy from the city of Dezful, in the southwestern province of Khuzestan who suffered from hemophilia, was the first victim to die due to a lack of medicine caused by the sadistic U.S. sanctions against Iran. Condemning the sanctions, Ahmad Ghavidel, the director of Iran's Hemophilia Society, said that “sanctions hitting medicine in Iran are causing a silent death and are a ploy to hurt the health of Iranian people.” Naser Naghdi, the director general of Darou Pakhsh, Iran’s largest pharmaceutical firm, said bluntly, “There are patients for whom a medicine is the difference between life and death. ... If you have cancer and you can't find your chemotherapy drug, your death will come soon. It’s as simple as that.” U.S. Representative Brad Sherman (D, CA) admits that the misery and death inflicted on Iranians by the sanctions is intended. “Critics argued that these measures will hurt the Iranian people,” he said, adding malevolently, “Quite frankly, we need to do just that.”

Cynics arguing in favor of continuing the inhumane sanctions are quick to point to the previously mentioned “humanitarian” loopholes and some even go so far as to blame Iran, the victim, for mismanaging its pharmaceutical supply chains. Even U.S. President Barack Obama has callously remarked that Iranians should blame their leaders for the medical supply shortages. However, former Woodrow Wilson Scholar, Siamak Namazi, puts the blame where it belongs squarely on the U.S., explaining, “But, there is no mistaking that the scarcity of medicine and medical equipment in Iran started with the tightening up of sanctions. ... Shortages began when the continuous tightening of sanctions eventually placed overwhelming obstacles in the way of humanitarian trade.”

Let us examine the behavior of the United States under its own definition of international terrorism. According to the Iran Sanctions Act of 1996, section 14, found under Title 50 of the United States Code, Chapter 35, Section 1701:

“The term 'act of international terrorism' means an act: (A) which is violent or dangerous to human life and that is a violation of the criminal laws of the United States or of any State or that would be a criminal violation if committed within the jurisdiction of the United States or any State; and (B) which appears to be intended - (i) to intimidate or coerce a civilian population; (ii) to influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion; or (iii) to affect the conduct of a government by assassination or kidnapping.”

Concerning (A) above, certainly, the U.S. sanctions are dangerous to human life and withholding needed medication from a patient would be a violation of the laws if committed within the United States, so (A) applies. As for (B), based on Representative Sherman’s remarks, the sanctions are intended to do harm thereby intimidating the civilian population, so (B) (i) applies. Equally certain is that the sanctions are intended to intimidate and coerce the government of Iran into caving in to U.S. demands regarding its peaceful nuclear energy program, as is clear from U.S. Treasury Secretary Geithner’s quote at the beginning of this article, so (B) (ii) also applies.

The legal conclusion appears inescapable. Based upon the above definition taken from its own laws, by imposing its Zionist-devised sanctions against Iran, the United States is committing an act of international pharmaceutical terrorism. But Manoucher’s parents already know this, as do the 8,000 Iranians with similar blood diseases, as well as the millions of Iranians suffering from kidney diseases, cancers, multiple sclerosis and other life-threatening diseases.

YW/JR
Yuram Abdullah Weiler is a freelance writer and political critic who has written dozens of articles on the Middle East and US policy. A former engineer with a background in mathematics and a convert to Islam, he currently writes perspectives on Islam, social justice, economics and politics from the viewpoint of an American convert to Shia Islam, focusing on the deleterious role played by the US in the Middle East and elsewhere. A dissenting voice from the “Belly of the Beast”, he lives with his wife in Denver, Colorado. More articles by Yuram Abdullah Weiler
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