Well, guys, it’s clear, Marco Rubio and this other senator better never talk about Iran ever because it’s apparent that their knowledge about it is worthless. Take a look (Via The Hill):
Sens. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) and Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) introduced a bill Thursday that would impose sanctions against Iranian leaders who violate human rights.
“The U.S. should strongly support the democratic aspirations of the Iranian people, and stand against ongoing systemic human rights violations by the Iranian regime,” Rubio said. “This legislation would take significant steps to require President Obama to hold Iranian leaders and individuals accountable for all human rights violations they have directed.”
S. 2585, the Iran Human Rights Accountability Act, would designate Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei, President Hassan Rouhani and other top Iranian leaders as human rights violators. It also freezes their assets and bans them from using travel visas.
So why this proposal is incredibly stupid?
1) Iranian people have made their democratic aspiration very clear again and again, and they support reformists. Rouhani is a symbol of those democratic aspirations. This only represents the aspirations of a small minority among the Iranian opposition, who are mostly Iranian-Americans, completely oblivious to the realities of Iran. They have been asking people to boycott elections and people have been turning up for election in 60+%, and they only boycotted one election (2011 Parliamentary) because they were asked by – wait for it – reformist leaders Mousavi and Karroubi. So, in this ant-Iranian people bill, it’s pretty cheeky of them to stick it to Iranian people and act as if it’s in their interest.
2) Iranian people have made it pretty clear that they want the relationship of the country with the West to improve. This bill will harm the already fragile reconciliation process that is half-assedly under progress. So, again, against people’s aspirations.
3) Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei never steps outside Iran. He rarely steps outside Tehran (he visits Mashhad every year abut his travels to any other place is very rare). He doesn’t have any assets outside Iran in his own name. This sanction will not harm him a single bit.
4) Seriously, Rouhani? In what alternate universe he is a human rights violator? You might be able to say he hasn’t done much about human rights violations (which is false, he has done as much as he can and is under his power), but violation? Come on. This is just showing a middle finger to Iranians who elected Rouhani with so much hardship.
5) If you want to help human rights in Iran, you have to make Iran and USA friends, not enemies. Seriously, improving relations will empower the moderates and the reformists, who will in turn reform the human rights situation with a freer hand, and it will improve the economy, which reduces the cost of human rights activism, and it will make travelling between two countries easier, again a help for human rights activists. So by trying to make the relationship worse, Rubio is actually harming the human rights situation.
6) This will also damage nuclear talks which will be a disaster for Iranian people.
Hey, it’s said that Rubio wants to run for president. In foreign policy it seems his head is firmly up his ass. I wonder what this says about his qualification.