Timothy Garton Ash schreibt heute einen kämpferischen Artikel im Guardian zur Irankrise: Die Europäer – und das sind in diesem Fall die Deutschen – müssen endlich glaubhaft Druck auf Iran ausüben, damit ein Krieg verhindert werden kann. Guter Punkt:
„A quarter of a century ago millions of people flooded through the streets of Bonn, London and Rome to protest against the deployment of American nuclear missiles – and even against civilian nuclear power. („Atomkraft? Nein, Danke.“) Now a fissiparous, unstable and increasingly militarised Islamic regime, whose president has called for Israel to be removed from the map, is deliberately proceeding towards the threshold where it could, if it chose, swiftly take the last step to having a nuclear weapon. Among the probable consequences would be a nuclear arms race in the Middle East, with Sunni Muslim powers such as Saudi Arabia deciding they need their own.Where are the German, British or Italian intellectuals and peace activists raising the alarm about this? Where have all the demos gone?“
„It will also require more effective pressure. If the pressure is not to be military, it can only be economic. The US has now done almost all it can economically, including frightening European banks off financing trade with and investment in Iran, but it does not itself have a major commercial relationship to withhold. Europe does. According to the European commission, 27.8% of Iran’s trade last year was with the EU, making it the country’s biggest trading partner. One third of Iran’s imports came from the EU. Italy was its biggest single European trading partner, while Germany remains by far the largest European exporter to the Islamic republic.
Many of these exports are supported by export credit guarantees, which become all the more important as private banks pull out. Germany has cut back on new export credit guarantees to Iran in recent years, after a guarantee-backed export boom between 2000 and 2005, but the total amount of current guarantees remains relatively stable and very significant. Britain has a current exposure of some £350m. The responsible senior official in the German economics ministry told me yesterday that Germany’s total commitment is around €5bn (about £3.5bn) – 10 times as much. Italy also has a large sum guaranteed. Here is our big European stick, which we should brandish as we continue to talk softly.“