The US is desperate to curb Iran’s influence over Iraq, but strangely, it may try to do this by giving Iraq long exemptions from sanctions on Iran.

Last month, when US sanctions against Iran’s oil industry came into place, eight countries were given 180-day sanction waivers. Less talked about was the 45-day sanction waiver given to Iraq, which many experts expect to see extended.

So, why would Iraq get this sanctions waiver, especially if the US wants to cut ties between the two countries? Well, it could be that over the past 15 years, Iran has been allowed to infiltrate Iraq so completely that removing Iranian influence from Iraq will take much longer than say six months and be more involved than simply cutting trade.

Currently, Iraq, still trying to rebuild itself after the Iraq War, is incredibly dependent of Iranian natural gas for its power stations and the last time that the flow was disrupted – Iran turned it off because of a late payment – power shortages caused massive protests.

While the US wants Iraq to be less dependent on the Iranian regime, it equally wants to see an Iraq without mass public protest. Simply the US wants to tread carefully, fearful that going too far too fast will only drive the countries closer.

The problem is that playing the long game might take years or even decades. Time that frankly, Iraq can ill-afford, especially when Iran could cause more crises in Iraq. Many Iraqis are already angry over increased Iranian interference in their government and they want to do something about it. This is something the US can work with.

While Iraq does need political and material support to rebuild, if the US could find a way to unite the other nations that want to stop the Iranian regime from intervening, it could find other sources for this support and divorce Iraq from Iran once and for all.

The fact is that while there is a heavy price to pay for helping to free Iraq from the clutches of the mullahs, sitting idly by and allowing the Iranian Regime to dig its claws further into its neighbouring states will only make matters worse.

In fact, the Iranian Regime should be removed from all countries in the Middle East over which it has control, including Iran. This is the best solution for freedom and peace in the region and is the will of the Iranian people.

Source » ncr-iran