Sunday, July 08, 2012

Sanctions? What Sanctions? German Firms Shipping Dual-Use Goods To Iran

My friend ace reporter Benni Weinthal has a great story in the Jerusalem Post about how wonderfully the sanctions on Iran are working. Dual-use goods, for those of you unfamiliar with the term refers to items that can be used for either military or civilians purposes...a nice cover for both the Iranian regime and those wishing to get rich selling them the toys they want. Here's a slice:

Germany’s multi-billion euro bilateral trade relationship with Iran continues unabated, even as evidence mounts that the Islamic Republic is determined to build a nuclear weapons capability.

The Jerusalem Post has obtained an uncensored list from late 2011, showing hundreds of German and Iranian enterprises in a flourishing trade relationship.

This is despite Iran’s construction of Fordow, a medium-level uranium enrichment facility buried into the side of a mountain near Qom, and the fact that the German equipment could be used to build more underground nuclear facilities.

Some businesses have asked that their names be removed from the list to avoid damage to their reputations.

One company named is Baden-W├╝rttemberg-based engineering giant Herrenknecht AG, which appears to be delivering heavy tunneling equipment to Iran – some of which is promoted as having the capability of “drilling down to depths of 6,000 meters.” {...}

Tommy Steiner, a senior research fellow at the Institute for Policy and Strategy at the Interdisciplinary Center, Herzliya, told the Post on Sunday: “Since the 1960s, Germany has been a steadfast ally of Israel and contributed to Israel’s national security. One would hope that the German authorities would apply rigid scrutiny to dual-use equipment and technology that meets the criteria of sanctions enforcement.”

The revelations have surfaced at a tricky moment for German diplomacy with Iran over its nuclear program. The Federal Republic is a member of the so-called the P5+1 — the five permanent members of the UN Security Council, plus Germany — and German diplomat Helga Schmid led last week’s technical nuclear negotiations in Istanbul with representatives of Iran’s government.

Late last month, Germany’s Federal Statistical Office said that bilateral trade with Iran in 2011 totaled nearly 4 billion euros (with about 3b. euros in German exports and 778m. euros in Iranian imports).

In fairness, it's by no means just the Germans. Nor does the article cover items sold to countries like Russia and Turkey, who freely violate the sanctions. They can buy from companies in Germany and elsewhere and then simply 'resell' the items to the Iranian regime, with no one looking over their shoulder.

The sanctions are annoying to Iran, but not damaging enough to stop them from pursuing their illegal nuclear weapons program.That's priority one for the regime, and it has been for quite some time.

Stopping Iran from going nuclear is going to take more forceful means.


louielouie said...

maybe this is how germany is financing the construction of the jooish submarines.

Anonymous said...

Did anyone seriously believe sanctions would work? It's delusional to believe anything except military action will stop these Iranian Nazis from obtaining deliverable nuclear weapons.
Diplomats & politicians are just giving us bullshit (as usual).
And most of the media (the vast majority) is doing the same.
The sheer stupidity of public discussion on this & other issues in the Middle-East is mind-boggling.