Western governments are once again beating the drums of war and launching an economic assault on Iran by imposing crippling sanctions.
Accusations by Western powers that Iran is trying to get nuclear weapons have intensified. Iran is depicted as the biggest danger to stability in the region.
Israel has claimed that Iran is reaching a point of no return in the development of nuclear weapons, and Israeli officials have demanded a military response.
The US, Britain and France have repeatedly talked of a military intervention. US and now British navy personnel are going to the Persian Gulf.
But the International Atomic Energy Agency has never said that Iran is trying to develop nuclear weapons. As recently as last Sunday, US defence secretary Leon Panetta made it clear that Iran has not decided to develop such weapons.
Yet Barack Obama has authorised sanctions on Iran’s central bank and countries buying Iran’s oil. The EU has agreed to follow suit. These are the most aggressive sanctions since Iranians toppled the pro-Western monarch in 1979—and have already damaged the economy.
The price for this, combined with president Ahmadinejad’s neoliberal policies, is paid by the Iranian working class.
Since 1979 sanctions have strengthened the hard-line factions of the regime—and their repression of grassroots opposition.
A year after the masses in Egypt and Tunisia punched imperialism by toppling its allies from power, the West is trying to resume business as usual.
They tried this first with the intervention in Libya and now escalating the situation with Iran.
Iran has threatened to shut the Strait of Hurmuz which will lead to soaring oil prices. It will not be the Western warmongers but the global 99 percent that will pay the price for this.