By Zahra Khezri

Iran self-sufficiency rooted in sanctions: Amal Movement rep.

November 7, 2017

Salah Fahs, the representative of the Lebanese Amal Movement in Tehran, believes that Saddam Hussein’s war against Iran in the 1980s - known as the imposed war - and the United States’ sanctions against Iran are the sources of Iran’s strength today in the region.

“In my opinion, two barriers have made Iran strong. First is the imposed war (Iran–Iraq War 1980-88), and the second is the sanctions. The two impediments led Iran to industrial self- sufficiency” Fahs told the Tehran Times journalist at the Tehran press exhibition.
Following is the full text of the interview.

Despite the sanctions, Iran is well-developed and has gained power in the region and NO ONE can deny it.Q. What’s the latest on the mysterious disappearance of Imam Musa al-Sadr?

A. Imam Musa al-Sadr, the leader of Lebanon's Shia Muslims, disappeared, along with two companions, in the summer of 1978 during an official visit to the Libyan capital Tripoli.
Hannibal Gaddafi, the son of the Libyan dictator, is currently in custody in Lebanon, facing charges allegedly for withholding information regarding Imam’s case, although he has agreed to release information under the condition to go free with total impunity.  
We strongly believe that the prominent Lebanese Shia leader Imam Musa al-Sadr is still alive. A fact-finding committee has been established to inquire about Imam, however, the assembly has never been able to visit Libya because of the ongoing political instability and armed conflicts in the North African country.
Imam’s case could not be brought to the international Court of Justice (ICJ) as their policy was not in conformity with the Imam’s.
The way I see it, we are all at fault when it comes to this prominent resistance movement leader, and we need collective efforts to discover the cleric's fate.

In our view, sanctions have failed to achieve their intended result, thanks to Iran's Supreme Leadership, government administration, and the nation.

Q. How do you assess the status quo in Lebanon following the ISIS defeat?

A. Imam Ali says we take a couple of blessings for granted: health and safety. Relatively speaking and compared to other nations, Lebanon is still pretty secure. The Lebanese Hezbollah resistance movement, Lebanese army, and the people constitute a “golden triangle” that enabled Lebanese to defeat ISIS (the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria) on Syrian-Lebanese border.
So rest assured, if the golden triangle power didn’t exist, ISIS would be in Beirut by now. So, yes, we have safety in the country.
In terms of economy, the country shows growth.
And in terms of political stability, we are going to hold a parliamentary election in May, 2018. Therefore, we believe that the resistance, army and the public support all have contributed in safeguarding the country.

Q. How do you perceive the U.S.-Israel threats against Iran and their efforts to kill the JCPOA?

A. I can say who sounds warning does nothing. What has the United States been able to do since the Islamic Revolution in Iran in 1979?
In 1979, the U.S. targeted Iran in a failed attempt to liberate American hostages, but its helicopter crashed in the Iranian desert near Tabas. America and Israel CAN DO NOTHING about Iran.
The maximum penalties they could impose on Iran, were sanctions. In our view, sanctions have failed to achieve their intended result, thanks to Iran's Supreme Leadership, administration, and the nation. Iran was able to pull out the nuclear deal “out of the lion’s mouth”. If America wants to stand against the JCPOA, be it. Nothing good will come out of it.

If America wants to stand against the JCPOA, be it. Nothing good will come out of it.

In my opinion, two barriers made Iran strong. First, is the imposed war (1980-88 Iran–Iraq War) and the second is sanctions. The two impediments led Iran to industrial self-sufficiency.
The U.S. has introduced a trade embargo against Iran which set the way for the country to be where it is today. Take the Philippines for example. The country sided with the U.S., and see what it gained. Or in Egypt, for instance, people would have died of hunger, had the U.S. ceased importing its wheat to the North African country.
Despite the sanctions, Iran is well-developed and has gained power in the region and NO ONE can deny it. Iranian president has also said that Iran is a recognized and respected country in the region. If the imposed war had not broken out, Iran’s military wouldn’t have been so strong today.
As they say necessity is the mother of invention.

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