President Trump’s plan to squeeze the Iranian regime dry of funds is working well, apparently. According to Fox News, documents reviewed by National Security Council officials reveal that pension funds in Iran may face an imminent collapse, including the pension funds for all of Iran’s armed forces.
That might precipitate the military to reconsider its long-standing support of the Iranian theocratic regime. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told “Fox News Sunday,” “They have fewer resources. We can see it with the Shia militias in Iraq. They’re scrambling for resources. We think the Iranian government will shrink, that their GDP will shrink by as much as 12 or 14 percent this year. This will reduce their capacity to purchase the things they need, the equipment they need, the materials they need, to inflict terror around the world.”
Fox News notes, “The impact has been so severe that of the 18 existing retirement funds in Iran, 17 are in the red, according to these documents. As much as 80 percent of Iran’s retirement funds rely on government subsidies, which the documents refer to as unsustainable for not just pensions but for food products, drugs and fuel.”
Additionally, Iran’s real estate market is failing.
Yet reports persist that Trump might support French President Emmanuel Macron’s plan to extend a $15 billion line of credit to the Iranian regime if Iran obeys the terms of the Iran nuclear deal (JCPoA), which Trump has exited.
While Trump has been staunchly opposed to Iran to this point, the Europeans continue to beg Iran. On Friday, in a pusillanimous move, the High Representative of the European Union and the foreign ministries of France, Germany and the United Kingdom issued a statement saying:
France, Germany, the United Kingdom and the High Representative express their deep concern over Iran’s announcements and actions in contradiction with its commitments under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). The IAEA has confirmed in its extraordinary report of 8 September that advanced centrifuges have been installed or are being installed in Natanz. France, Germany, the United Kingdom and the High Representative are deeply concerned by these activities.
They are concerned by the risk that the JCPoA further unravels under the strain of sanctions imposed by the United States since May 2018 and following Iran’s decisions to no longer implement several of the central provisions of the agreement. They believe the latest developments underline the need for diplomatic efforts towards de-escalation and resumption of dialogue, which they fully support. They continue to support the JCPoA and strongly urge Iran to reverse all activities that are inconsistent with its commitments under the JCPoA and to refrain from any further steps.
Meanwhile, the Iranian government condemned Canada for seizing Iranian government properties and selling them to compensate victims of terrorist groups that were sponsored by the Iranian regime. Global News reported, “According to a document filed in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice last month, the victims got a share of the money earned through the sale of Iran’s buildings in Ottawa and Toronto … The recipients were victims of Hamas and Hezbollah — terrorist groups bankrolled, armed and trained by Iran.”
Ironically, considering his government sponsors international terrorism, on Friday Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi condemned Canada’s action as “a clear breach of international law.”