Financial sanctions have become a key tool of U.S. foreign policy. Measures taken against Iran and North Korea make clear that this new financial statecraft can be effective, but true success will require persuading global banks to accept a shared sense of risk.
New sanctions have revived hopes that non-military action can cripple Iran's nuclear program. But some analysts say these efforts could be undermined by Asian investment in Iran as well as the regime's intransigence.
Authors: Ray Takeyh and Suzanne Maloney International Affairs
Ray Takeyh and Suzanne Maloney say that despite decades of struggling under punitive financial measures, Iran has persisted with its objectionable policies, ranging from terrorism to proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.
Jose Alvarez, Herbert and Rose Rubin professor of international law at New York University School of Law, discusses the growth and distributional effects and the human rights implications of global economic governance through bilateral investment treaties, with a focus on the global south.
Despite a spotty record of effectiveness, Western states continue to promote UN sanctions in cases ranging from North Korea to Iran. But the UN Security Council is more divided than ever about implementing these coercive measures.
The UN Security Council is debating how to restrict Iran's nuclear program. Western states seek a firm statement and the threat of eventual sanctions if Iran does not suspend its uranium enrichment work. But Russia and China oppose sanctions, leading to talk about economic penalties outside the United Nations' authority.
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