Saturday, December 22, 2012

"Countering" Iran in Latin America

Back in March I mentioned the Countering Iran in the Western Hemisphere Act of 2012, which has passed the House and now has passed the Senate. Here is the text.

It is a piece of red meat for a vocal minority, and generally seems harmless unless I am missing something. Within 180 days of enactment, the State Department must write a threat assessment, which will be interesting to read. For the most part, neither the Defense nor State Departments see Iran has much more than a potential threat (a category that could fit a lot of countries) so it may not generate the kind of outrage the bill's authors desire.

As I wrote back then, one important point to keep in mind is that the bill stipulates the creation of a "multiagency action plan" in Latin America, a place where Iran is not considered a threat. Forcing this on Latin America could backfire.


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