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2007 Ron Paul Chapter 78
30 July 2007
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2007 Ron Paul 78:1
Mr. PAUL. Mr. Speaker, I strongly oppose any move to initiate further sanctions on Iran. Sanctions are acts of war, and expanding sanctions on Iran serves no purpose other than preparing the American people for an eventual attack on Iran. This is the same pattern we saw in the run up to the war on Iraq: Congress passes legislation calling for regime change, sanctions are imposed, and eventually we are told that only an attack will solve the problem. We should expect the same tragic result if we continue down this path. I urge my colleagues to reconsider.
2007 Ron Paul 78:2
I oppose economic sanctions for two very simple reasons. First, they dont work as effective foreign policy. Time after time, from Cuba to China to Iraq, we have failed to unseat despotic leaders or change their policies by refusing to trade with the people of those nations. If anything, the anti-American sentiment aroused by sanctions often strengthens the popularity of such leaders, who use America as a convenient scapegoat to divert attention from their own tyranny. History clearly shows that free and open trade does far more to liberalize oppressive governments than trade wars. Economic freedom and political freedom are inextricably linked — when people get a taste of goods and information from abroad, they are less likely to tolerate a closed society at home. So sanctions mostly harm innocent citizens and do nothing to displace the governments we claim as enemies.
2007 Ron Paul 78:3
Second, sanctions simply hurt American industries, particularly agriculture. Every market we close to our nations farmers is a market exploited by foreign farmers. China, Russia, the Middle East, North Korea, and Cuba all represent huge markets for our farm products, yet many in Congress favor current or proposed trade restrictions that prevent our farmers from selling to the billions of people in these areas.
2007 Ron Paul 78:4
We must keep in mind that Iran has still not been found in violation of the Non-Proliferation Treaty. Furthermore, much of the information regarding Irans nuclear program is coming to us via thoroughly discredited sources like the MeK, a fanatical cult that is on our State Departments terror list. Additionally, the same discredited neo-conservatives who pushed us into the Iraq war are making similarly exaggerated claims against Iran. How often do these experts have to be proven wrong before we start to question their credibility?
2007 Ron Paul 78:5
It is said that we non-interventionists are somehow isolationists because we dont want to interfere in the affairs of foreign nations. But the real isolationists are those who demand that we isolate certain peoples overseas because we disagree with the policies of their leaders. The best way to avoid war, to promote American values, and to spread real freedom and liberty is to engage in trade and contacts with the rest of the world as broadly as possible.
2007 Ron Paul 78:6
I urge my colleagues to reconsider this counterproductive and dangerous move toward further sanctions on Iran.