With the US Treasury now sanctioning Iran’s car industry, readers may be wondering what vehicles have to do with WMD. Since media reports about the new sanctions were short on context, a brief IranMediaFocus primer is in order.
“The auto sector supports the regime in two key ways: 1) as a massive source of revenue and 2) as a means of accessing advanced foreign technologies and products for its military and security forces through manufacturing agreements”
The Iranian auto industry is directly dominated by the Iranian regime and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), Iran’s leading military organization and key instrument used to suppress Iran’s internal pro-democracy movement
Which brings us to France’s Renault. About a month ago – right before the new sanctions – the Iranian press announced that the company had selected Iran as its “industrial agent” in the Middle East. Perhaps Renault thought that would go unnoticed; not by a long shot.
As indicated by this article in “Le Point“, Renault has apparently chosen to bury its head in the sand in view of the prospect of lost revenue, layoffs and union anger. The company may very well have also decided to pull political strings, as implied by the activities of Philippe Marini, head of the French Senate’s financial committee.
France has been tough on Iran from the start; that’s plain for all English-language readers to see. Beneath the surface – in French – apparently not all its subjects are prepared to pay the price necessary to stop Tehran’s march toward nukes.