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Iran Deleted From the World's Banking Computers 667

Posted by Soulskill
from the let's-see-if-they-notice dept.
dtjohnson writes "Iran is being deleted from the world banking system Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT) computers as of Saturday at 1600 UTC. Once the SWIFT codes for Iranian banks are deleted, Iranian banks will no longer be able to transfer funds to and from other worldwide banks, turning Iranian international commerce into a barter operation. SWIFT is taking the action at the request of EU members to comply with international sanctions against Iran due to its program to develop nuclear weapons. The effect will be to drastically hinder Iran's ability to execute international business transactions."
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Iran Deleted From the World's Banking Computers

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  • by elrous0 (869638) * on Friday March 16, 2012 @09:33AM (#39376297)

    The whole reason that Iran and North Korea even began pursuing nuclear weapons is because of that incredibly stupid "Axis of Evil" speech that George Bush made in 2003. When the largest military power in the world labels you as one of three "Axis of Evil" members, then proceeds to invade one of the other two, it tends to make you a bit twitchy. And, both Iran and NK know that the only way to really protect yourself from U.S. invasion is with nuclear weapons.

    Due mainly to Israeli and U.S. propaganda, a lot of people seem to think that Iran is building nukes to attack Israel. But the fact is that Iran has never shown itself to be a particularly hostile or irrational nation in any military sense. And even despite the anti-U.S. rhetoric that followed the revolution that overthrew the U.S. puppet shah and the U.S. helping Saddam Hussein during the Iraq/Iran war, Iranians have been surprisingly open to U.S. diplomacy in the past. They were even one of the first countries to offer the U.S. condolences after the 9-11 attacks, and in the pre-Bush years maintained a stable, if sometimes tense, relationship with the U.S. They're a country that seems to want to be liked on the world stage. But they're also a country that wants to send a message to the U.S. that they're not going to stand by and be invaded on some U.S. oil grab.

    So we cut off their banks and hit them with sanctions. Fine. A lot of Iranian people will suffer. And maybe this will lead them to negotiate, maybe not.

    But you know what I bet would ABSOLUTELY lead them to negotiate and drop their nuke program?

    1) Offer a few public goodwill gestures to make it clear that the U.S. is *not* going to invade them or attack them
    2) Tell Mossad to stop assassinating their scientists, or face sanctions of their own.
    3) Reign in Israel and make it clear to them that attacking Iran will NOT be tolerated, and will cost them the friendship of the U.S.
    4) Normalizing relations with Iran.

    You do those four things, and you won't need to cut off their banks to get them to the table. They'll be *running* to get to the table.

    • by elrous0 (869638) * on Friday March 16, 2012 @09:36AM (#39376331)

      Oh sorry, what I meant to say was F1RST POST!!!!!!!

    • Right. Because invading a country with ICBMs will work out so much better.

      • by mrops (927562)

        Came across this the other day....

        I would want Nukes if I saw this.

        http://www.conspiracyuk.co.uk/iran-who-is-threatening-who/ [conspiracyuk.co.uk]

        • One of those black dots representing a military base is in the middle of the arabian sea.... While it is probably meant to represent the presence of a US carrier battlegroup or something, it's a bit disingenuous to call it a military base.

          That's not to say that the US military presence in the middle east isn't excessive, nor that Iran doesn't have a right to be a bit twitchy, especially with idiots on the Republican primary trail saying that the first thing they'd do if they're elected president is invade I

          • by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 16, 2012 @10:20AM (#39376969)

            A US aircraft carrier can keep more planes in the air than most countries entire air force. If that doesn't count as a military base then I don't know what does.

            • by Savage-Rabbit (308260) on Friday March 16, 2012 @10:57AM (#39377581)

              A US aircraft carrier can keep more planes in the air than most countries entire air force. If that doesn't count as a military base then I don't know what does.

              That's not all, a US aircraft carrier group is bigger than most countries entire navies as well and if you thrown in a couple of marine divisions and some landing craft they'd probably give most standing armies on earth as a run for their money as well.

    • by Troyusrex (2446430) on Friday March 16, 2012 @09:41AM (#39376383)
      I guess you don't remember Jimmy Carter negotiating a treaty with North Korea back in 1994 almost exactly along the lines you state. Or them cheating on it by continuing to develop nuclear weapons and being called on it even before Bush was elected and well before the Axis of Evil speech.
      • by atriusofbricia (686672) on Friday March 16, 2012 @09:52AM (#39376585) Journal

        I guess you don't remember Jimmy Carter negotiating a treaty with North Korea back in 1994 almost exactly along the lines you state. Or them cheating on it by continuing to develop nuclear weapons and being called on it even before Bush was elected and well before the Axis of Evil speech.

        Remembering that information would conflict with the "Everything that is wrong or has gone wrong in the last 10 - 15 years is George W Bush's fault" pillar. Thus, down the memory hole with that.

        The OP also failed to mention Ahmadinejad's "wipe Israel off the map" speech along with all the various speeches from him and others in their government saying Israel has no right to exist. I've never really supported the seeming "Israel First" politics of the US government over the last few decades, but to say that Iran only wants to get along with its neighbors and be good little world citizens is a bit off. Again, we can't mention any of that though as it conflicts with the central pillars of "GWB blame" and "USA blame".

        • by Rakshasa-sensei (533725) on Friday March 16, 2012 @10:06AM (#39376797) Homepage

          Remembering that information would conflict with the "Everything that is wrong or has gone wrong in the last 10 - 15 years is George W Bush's fault" pillar. Thus, down the memory hole with that.

          The OP also failed to mention Ahmadinejad's "wipe Israel off the map" speech along with all the various speeches from him and others in their government saying Israel has no right to exist. I've never really supported the seeming "Israel First" politics of the US government over the last few decades, but to say that Iran only wants to get along with its neighbors and be good little world citizens is a bit off. Again, we can't mention any of that though as it conflicts with the central pillars of "GWB blame" and "USA blame".

          Iran has elections, just like the US. (And both seem to be about selecting one of two equally bad choices)

          Do you really want to base foreign policy on shit that politicians say to win elections? In that case the US looks like the 3rd Reich reborn.

          • by phantomfive (622387) on Friday March 16, 2012 @12:44PM (#39379271) Journal

            Iran has elections, just like the US.

            Do you remember all the protests about the unfair elections last year? Do you also remember how the government started killing protestors? Do you also remember that you can be arrested for criticizing the government in Iran?

            IF YOU DON'T HAVE FREEDOM TO CRITICIZE THE GOVERNMENT, YOU DON'T HAVE DEMOCRACY. This is extremely important, and is why the US constitution specifically protects freedom of speech.

          • Iran has elections, just like the US.

            They do? Where in the Constitution must all candidates be officially approved by a panel of unelected religious overlords before they are legally allowed to run? I missed that part, somehow...

        • by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 16, 2012 @10:25AM (#39377051)

          I think it is very important to clarify the motivations of Iran when dealing with Israel. I think many would assume it's antisemitism, but I would wager it is mostly predicated on self-defense and geopolitics. Remember that Iran has a Jewish population of around 30,000, which is the second largest in the Middle East aside from Israel. If Iran were really on a crusade of killing Jews(which I think many often mistakenly allege), would they not just start with their own people?

          Iran views Israel as a projection of USA dominance. So to be honest, I think the most wise policy is to heed the suggestions of George Washington and drop our entangling alliances and stop meddling in the foreign affairs of nations. If Israel wants to nuke Iran, let them. Just don't expect us to be behind them.

          • by Talderas (1212466)

            I think it is very important to clarify the motivations of Iran when dealing with Israel. I think many would assume it's antisemitism, but I would wager it is mostly predicated on self-defense and geopolitics. Remember that Iran has a Jewish population of around 30,000, which is the second largest in the Middle East aside from Israel. If Iran were really on a crusade of killing Jews(which I think many often mistakenly allege), would they not just start with their own people?

            Why would they? Wiping out the 30k local Jews after wiping out Israel makes more strategic sense since wiping out the 30k would likely illicit a response from Israel and other nations.

          • by Aryden (1872756)
            It is not, nor has it been, anything to do with Jewish people existing. It has everything to do with A) having land taken away from what you consider "your people", B) The Qur'an requires that no lands under Muslim rule shall ever be given up, C) It also requires Muslims to conquer the Dar alHarb, all of non-islamic lands, D) If you had land or items taken away from you, you'd want them back too.
            • by bkaul01 (619795) on Friday March 16, 2012 @01:05PM (#39379623)

              Yes, and while D) is perfectly reasonable, C) seems like quite a valid cause for concern for other nations: we're talking about a theocratic government whose religion requires that its adherents (eventually) conquer the world, which government appears to take a particularly fundamentalist, literal view of the "conquer" aspect of that, and which is pursuing nuclear weapons.

              Bush's "Axis of Evil" speech was an observation of this, not the cause of it. Iran and N Korea were off the reservation for decades before he made that speech, and have continued to be "rogue nations" regardless of diplomacy. Saying we should normalize relations is all well and good, except that it neglects the fact that these nations are not approaching issues from a common worldview. It's not that they're irrational: it's that their philosophy, beliefs, and goals are so radically different from our own that we don't have a common premise from which to work.

              That's not to say that I think invading them is the right course of action here (I don't), but in many ways, diplomacy is destined to fail, if it is based on the assumption that they just want to get along. "Diplomatic bribery" of a sort could still work: that is, don't assume they want what we want, but figure out something they actually do want, and use that carrot to convince them to give up the nuclear ambitions. The stick of economic isolation has the potential to be pretty effective if we pair it with the right carrot.

        • by digitig (1056110) on Friday March 16, 2012 @10:29AM (#39377111)

          The OP also failed to mention Ahmadinejad's "wipe Israel off the map" speech

          The mistranslation [wikipedia.org] of the speech that the person in (IIRC) 14th place in the chain of command made? I can't think why the OP didn't think that was worth mentioning.

        • I am far from an apologist for Iran, but Ahmadinejad never said that he would wipe Israel off the map. He said that the Zionist government of Israel should be erased from history. In effect, he was calling for regime change just like we did. The story was based on a misreporting of the translation.

        • by steelfood (895457) on Friday March 16, 2012 @01:01PM (#39379571)

          The OP also failed to mention Ahmadinejad's "wipe Israel off the map" speech

          A lot of things get lost in translation, and some things are misquoted and taken out of context. For Ahmadinejad, it happens quite often on purpose. You can't rally the troops at home if your "enemy" actually sounds reasonable. The English translations are just propoganda pieces. He may be an antisemite (or may not--not supporting Israel has nothing to do with being antisemetic despite what everybody wants you to think), but he's not crazy.

          He didn't actually say "wipe Israel off the map." He said something closer to, "It'd be better if Israel didn't exist." To paraphrase, he meant there wouldn't be as many problems in the Middle East if Israel hadn't been created in the first place.

          There are numerous other things that he supposedly said that paint a very negative picture of him. These are mostly untrue when taken in context and translated properly. In order to even understand the situation, you first have to recognize that when it comes to any information related to Israel, the propaganda machine is on full blast. Some of it is unintentional, but most of it is very intentional.

    • by Theophany (2519296) on Friday March 16, 2012 @09:48AM (#39376509)

      The whole reason that Iran and North Korea even began pursuing nuclear weapons is because of that incredibly stupid "Axis of Evil" speech that George Bush made in 2003.

      It's "incredibly stupid" to think that a Bush speech in 2003 caused all this. The USA's relationship with Iran has been shitty since 1979 and Ayatollah Khomeini's return from exile. To claim otherwise is in flagrant denial of reality and you only oust yourself as some anti-Zionist nutcase.

    • by Hatta (162192) on Friday March 16, 2012 @09:55AM (#39376629) Journal

      You do those four things, and you won't need to cut off their banks to get them to the table. They'll be *running* to get to the table.

      It's not hard to get them at the table. Iran has been negotiating, and the Egyptians even got an agreement out of them, but Obama chose to go forward with sanctions instead of accepting a deal that would have accomplished what the sanctions were intended to accomplish. Check out the March 8th Daily Show with Trita Parsi for details.

    • by Frangible (881728) on Friday March 16, 2012 @10:05AM (#39376779)
      ... and, to top it all off, sanctions don't work. This has been clearly demonstrated before with India and Pakistan. Both had clandestine nuclear programs that produced full Teller-Ulam designs and we didn't know about either until it was too late. A few years after sanctions were started, we dropped them.

      Fundamentally, nuclear weapons come down to digging rocks out of the ground. Theoretically you don't even need to enrich the uranium; you can use heavy water as a moderator if you have access to an ocean. Which Iran does. So they could produce plutonium entirely from natural uranium. And there is a great deal of natural uranium.

      I also don't agree with the notion Iran is going to make weapons from uranium. India and Pakistan didn't. It's a complete waste of uranium. They are better off transmuting uranium into plutonium.

      Then again, I never really agreed with the idea of dictating a sovereign nation-state's technological development in the first place. It always has failed, and always will, and just serves to piss a country off and unite its people against you. You reinforce every reason and argument to develop nuclear weapons in the first place, and remove any internal opposition to it.

      Nuclear technology cannot be stopped -- it is just too abundant in nature. You might as well try to stop nature itself. We are delusional to think otherwise when we have always failed in the past.
      • ... and, to top it all off, sanctions don't work. This has been clearly demonstrated before with India and Pakistan.

        The sanctions against Iran go far, far deeper than anything that was tried against India and Pakistan.

    • by JoshuaZ (1134087) on Friday March 16, 2012 @10:14AM (#39376887) Homepage

      Er, there's a bit wrong with your statement here. Most obviously, the axis of evil speech occurred in January of 2002, not 2003. That helps your case a bit, because a lot of the more serious failures of cooperation by Iran and North Korea occurred towards the end of 2002.. However, in both cases, there were serious failures to cooperate with international inspections before the speech. The entire James Kelly visit to North Korea was over evidence of non-cooperation that had been building up since the late Clinton years. Similarly, in the case of Iran, Iran had likely begun building new nuclear sites since before the speech http://guests.armscontrolwonk.com/archive/517/exiles-and-iran-intel [armscontrolwonk.com]. You can make an argument that Iran and North Korea may have accelerated their programs due to the Axis of Evil speech, and that's a more nuanced and viable argument, but that's a much weaker statement.

      Moving on from there, there are other factual problems with your remarks. You claimed that

      Iran has never shown itself to be a particularly hostile or irrational nation in any military sense

      Right, so funding Hamas, Hezbollah and Islamic Jihad isn't at all evidence of a "particularly hostile" or "irrational" attitude. http://www.cfr.org/iran/state-sponsors-iran/p9362 [cfr.org]. Iran doesn't even share a direct border with Israel but they are one of the largest supporters of attacks on Israel. That doesn't exactly scream peaceful to me.

      There are enough factual problems as pointed out above, that your four point proposal simply doesn't make sense.

    • by unassimilatible (225662) on Friday March 16, 2012 @10:15AM (#39376899) Journal
      Obama already reached out to Iran. He began his presidency apologetically acknowledging U.S. involvement in a coup that happened more than 50 years ago. He then offered bilateral negotiations that, predictably, failed miserably (that was the whole plan of two-party talks, to blame the mean Americans and walk out). And, of course, Obama didn't support the 2009 uprising (when protesters were yelling, "where are you Obama?"), and has continued the blacklisting of Mujahedin-e Khalq (or MEK), the Iranian dissident movement as a terror organization, so as not to upset the Mullahs.

      And what did Obama get for his "goodwill" as you put it?

      Continued lethal Iranian assistance to guerrillas killing Americans in Iraq and Afghanistan; a plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador by blowing up a Washington restaurant; the announcement by a member of parliament of Iranian naval exercises to shut down the Strait of Hormuz; undoubted Chinese and Russian access to a captured U.S. drone for the copying and countering of its high-tech secrets.

      It's worked great! Let's try appeasement again. Because this time will be different.
      • by iluvcapra (782887) on Friday March 16, 2012 @12:20PM (#39378935)

        1) Iranians already knew the US put the Shah in power and any "apology" only reasserted facts that had been commonplace since the 70s, and which the British had already acknowledged in any event. What most Iranians are waiting for is the apology from the US for putting the Ayatollah in power -- my Persian girlfriend (left in 2005) tells me that pretty much everyone in the democratic and monarchist movements in Iran assume that the US was behind exiling the Shah to Egypt and putting Ayatollah Khomeini in power, and it really doesn't matter how many times I try to explain to her that the US had nothing to gain from it. All Iranian reformers know is that their country has been completely fucked up by the ayatollahs, America benefits from Iran being fucked up (for oil, ???, profit), thus America put the ayatollahs in power, QED.

        2) The Wikileaks cables made it clear that the MEK is a cult that once proposed mass suicides [niacouncil.org] and uses brainwashing to adhere members. It's lobbying campaign in the US Congress and ability to win support in that august body is despicable.

        3) The leader of the 2009 uprising, Mir-Hossein Mousavi, was a strident supporter of Iran's nuclear program and the constitution of the Iranian republic in general -- we could discount his claims as rhetoric, but then we have to throw out just about everything Ahmadi says on the same grounds. The fact is there are no good options for "regime change" in Iran for the US, or Israel for that matter -- the current leaders are bad, their rivals in the reform movement agree with them on everything that bothers the US and Israel, the Iranian people are naturally and endogenously hostile to US and Israeli regional goals (because those goals are imperialist), and the only way you could take Iran off the threat board is by putting a deeply unpopular government in power and making Iran a client state. And the Iranian people know this and support the regime accordingly, because it's a hell of a lot better than any solution the west proposes.

        The idea that democracies are less belligerent is a fallacy. A democratic Iran would be spinning just as many centrifuges as an Islamic Republic. More even.

        With regard to the list of all the horrible things Iran has done to the US, yeah it's rough but this is the sort of thing countries do to each other. Some plot against the Saudi ambassador isn't a causus belli any more than the US and Mossad's covert murders of Iranian scientists. And refraining from bombing them isn't "appeasement."

      • Continued lethal Iranian assistance to guerrillas killing Americans in Iraq and Afghanistan

        Wouldn't be a problem if there weren't any Americans in Iraq and Afghanistan, don't you think?

        undoubted Chinese and Russian access to a captured U.S. drone for the copying and countering of its high-tech secrets.

        The nerve it takes to write this... so there's a U.S. drone flying over Iran spying at them, they bring it down, and then you accuse them of treating it as war booty?

        I have news for you; when Serbia shot down an F-117 during the Kosovo campaign, they also gave Russians access. In fact, right now everyone has access, given that it's in their war museum. Ohnoes!

        Maybe you just shouldn't fly your precious secret tech w

    • by Moryath (553296) on Friday March 16, 2012 @10:34AM (#39377203)

      The whole reason that Iran and North Korea even began pursuing nuclear weapons is because of that incredibly stupid "Axis of Evil" speech that George Bush made in 2003.

      North Korea's been pursuing nuclear weapon technology and missile technology since the 1990s, remember the 1994 treaty where they "promised to stop"?

      When the largest military power in the world labels you as one of three "Axis of Evil" members, then proceeds to invade one of the other two, it tends to make you a bit twitchy. And, both Iran and NK know that the only way to really protect yourself from U.S. invasion is with nuclear weapons.

      Oh, I agree there. It certainly made Kim Jong Nutbag run screaming into even more isolationism, and I'd argue it was a larger factor in Iran's becoming more hostile to the world in general; it certainly scuppered an ongoing wave of westernization as the mullahs saw another chance to crack down by declaring a new round of "eliminate the influence of the great satan."

      Due mainly to Israeli and U.S. propaganda,

      Seig something...

      But the fact is that Iran has never shown itself to be a particularly hostile or irrational nation in any military sense.

      Oh? They invaded Iraq. They've been weapons peddlers to rogue states for over 30 years. They do tend to operate by proxy, but their military actions from Syria, Lebanon, and Gaza are well, well documented. And both their crazy idiot president and the Mullahs are on record on what they would do to Israel if they "had the means," often including the words "wipe Israel off the face of the map."

      So we cut off their banks and hit them with sanctions. Fine. A lot of Iranian people will suffer. And maybe this will lead them to negotiate, maybe not.

      Well, the hope is that it will. It's what the UN decides on, and it's better than going to war.

      But you know what I bet would ABSOLUTELY lead them to negotiate and drop their nuke program?

      I bet you're going to tell us. And I bet you're going to miss out on the cultural issues of being seen as "weak" by coming into some form of negotiation unilaterally, especially the muslim/arab/persian tribalist dynamics involved. So let's move on.

      1) Offer a few public goodwill gestures to make it clear that the U.S. is *not* going to invade them or attack them
      Like what - sending a ton of earthquake aid? Whoops, we did that. Not attacking them for all this time? We did that too. Offering unilateral negotiotions? Obama did that, and then the crazy-ass Republicans shot it all down. You want to know who's causing the problems right now, making Iran think they're going to be attacked, you want to look at Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, and my personal favorite, Rick "end times" Santorum.

      2) Tell Mossad to stop assassinating their scientists, or face sanctions of their own.
      Ah yes, Mossad, the eternal bogeyman of the muslim/arab/persian region. Anything happens? Blame "Mossad." Assassinated your brother in law to ascend to the throne? Don't worry, blame Mossad. Killed yourself from a life of excess while stealing the aid money intended for the poor (Arafat)? Don't worry, your followers will say "Mossad poisoned him." And on and on. The moment you get into stupid shit like this, you just reveal your own bias.

      3) Reign [sic] in Israel and make it clear to them that attacking Iran will NOT be tolerated, and will cost them the friendship of the U.S.
      Really? We should take over the Israeli government by force and set up a puppet state? Last time there was one there it was called the Mandate of Palestine and the British ran it... then they parceled off Transjordan and refused to allow Jews to move anywhere but "Palestine" because the Arabs were bitching about too many Jews spreading out... then it was split in half and the Arabs launched a genocidal war to wipe out the Jews anyways.

      4) Normalizing relations with Iran.
      Normalizing relations is a product of negotiations. W

    • by medcalf (68293)
      You do realize that Iran has been waging a slow war on the US since 1979, right? Look up, for instance, Khobar Towers. Also, both the Iranian and N Korean programs predate Bush's speech. But other than getting the facts wrong, great post. The ideological position was clearly stated.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 16, 2012 @09:42AM (#39376401)

    It's about dollar-backed oil [telegraph.co.uk].

  • New SWIFT (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 16, 2012 @09:44AM (#39376421)

    Cutting iran off SWIFT may lead to development of new messaging system between Iran, Russia, China etc. This would make banks of those countries less dependent on western entities.

    • It will probably just prompt massive increase of the chinese investments in iran ...
      they do not care that much about swift, barter is nice, more margins...

  • by jbaach (241113) on Friday March 16, 2012 @09:44AM (#39376427)

    "...wait for March 20, when the Iranian oil bourse will start trading oil in other currencies apart from the US dollar..."

    http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/NB17Ak04.html [atimes.com]

    (No, I haven't read the full article, it was linked on wikipedia ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iranian_oil_bourse#Opening [wikipedia.org] )

  • Sad world... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 16, 2012 @09:46AM (#39376475)

    Israel on the other hand, with all the nukes they have, gets a free SWIFT pass.
    Even if Iran owned a nuclear weapon, they wouldn't want to nuke Israel. The mosque in Jerusalem is the second holiest in the Muslim world, after Mecca. Nuking Israel would mean the destruction of a holy Muslim city.

  • Paypal (Score:5, Funny)

    by Hyperhaplo (575219) on Friday March 16, 2012 @09:48AM (#39376519)

    The effect will be to drastically hinder Iran's ability to execute international business transactions."

    So... just use Paypal?

  • by Sez Zero (586611) on Friday March 16, 2012 @09:50AM (#39376535) Journal
    Seems like a lot of power for a little NGO.

    SWIFT is a co-operative society under Belgian law, which its shareholders own and control

    Just in case you didn't think global capitalism and corporations were significant, here's a good reminder.

  • by Gothmolly (148874) on Friday March 16, 2012 @10:11AM (#39376859)

    How do you track when someone swaps 100 tons of wheat or 100 bars of gold for some barrels of oil? You can't. If you "let" them use the international monetary system, you have a means of tracking all their activites. Follow the money and you find the bad guys. Giving them a pass on that lets them trade with whomever they want without any trace.

  • by dataxtream (1292440) on Friday March 16, 2012 @10:18AM (#39376937)
    The SWIFT system was constructed by the west to manage bank transfers. You can be sure that Iran will alternatives to it - just as Iran has found alternatives to every other sanction the US has imposed ove more that 30 years. So what the west is actually doing is facilitating the deconstruction of a once universal system, and facilitating the construction of an alternative that the west does not control.
  • by Qbertino (265505) on Friday March 16, 2012 @10:28AM (#39377105)

    Iran, after just yesterday celebrating the aniversary of being 'very extremely close to building the bomb now' for 20 years, now announced that the Iranian gouvernment has ordered to cease all of the countries nuclear operations and research and inmediately focus all resources in building a rating agency.
    The rating agency is being constructed in downtown Teheran as we speak and is due to be finished in 8 weeks, when offices will be furnished and the first analysist - fresh graduates from the Abda-alla-hap Business School - will move in. Stockmarkets throughout the western hemisphere plumeted as the news struck and the UN has summoned an emergency security concil meeting for tomorrow morning.
    Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadinedschad, in a speech this morning, threatened western powers with saying 'we will rate all infidels with B- or lower'. His word could hardly be heard through thousands and thousands of bearded and veiled muslim ultrafanatics cheering in the streets and in parliament. Israeli gouvernment and military officials have declared Defcon 3.

  • by peter303 (12292) on Friday March 16, 2012 @10:29AM (#39377127)
    Monday is the Persian New Year, the biggest Iranian holiday. Guard may be lower that day. Also the less fatalities if fewer people working at the nuclear sites.
  • by jsepeta (412566) on Friday March 16, 2012 @10:43AM (#39377361) Homepage

    No matter how nice or mean we are to Iran has no bearing on the fact that it's in their nation's best interests to wield nuclear weapons as a deterrent vs. US invasion. Obama has done pretty much what Bush was doing - fucking up in the Middle East because he doesn't grasp the very basic concepts of the rights of states to determine their own government. You can't just give someone a Democracy - it must be willfully EARNED. Iran's sovereign right to be a country run by zealous Muslim imams is tragic, but it's still their right to be Holocaust-denying jackasses.

  • by voss (52565) on Friday March 16, 2012 @10:44AM (#39377391)

    Khatami(the closest thing Iran has had to a moderate and the only honestly elected president Iran in the last 40 years) wanted to normalize relations with the US in 2003. Iran hated Al Queda who they view as an enemy and a rival for power. In 2003 iran was willing to do everything the US wanted(including fighting al queda,stopping support of hamas, full cooperation with the IAEA) in exchange for normalized relations and "mutual respect". A detente with the US would have likely strengthened Khatami's power base in Iran.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/world/documents/us_iran_1roadmap.pdf [washingtonpost.com]

    Bush wanted iran to capitulate to all US demands first instead of "mutual respect"

  • by jonwil (467024) on Friday March 16, 2012 @10:54AM (#39377533)

    If the US and UK hadn't intervened and overthrown the democratically elected government of Iran just because said government decided it was going to kick out the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company (one of the ancestors of the modern BP oil company) and take full control over Iranian oil, its likely that Iran would have continued as a democratic constitutional monarchy instead of becoming the strict Muslim state it is today.

    • by TheSync (5291)

      its likely that Iran would have continued as a democratic constitutional monarchy instead of becoming the strict Muslim state it is today.

      Yeah, because look at all the other liberal muslim democracies in the middle east...oh wait.

      I agree that Western intervention has not helped the middle east, but I think you have to ignore cultural realities to imagine stable liberal democracies forming (without significant cultural reform, which takes generations).

      It is likely that Iran would have ended up like Egypt: a

  • by AdamJS (2466928) on Friday March 16, 2012 @11:34AM (#39378161)

    I would have a system in place to render their oil useless at a moment's notice. Seems a lot more attainable than a nuke.

  • by nimbius (983462) on Friday March 16, 2012 @03:19PM (#39381435) Homepage
    "international sanctions against Iran due to its program to develop nuclear weapons."

    always remember: the united states, nor the UN, nor the IAEA have any proof at all that Iran is developing nuclear weapons. its subtle changes in the wording that will inevitably lead us all to conclude this is the case however.

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