“We are going to put as tight a squeeze on Iran as we possibly can,”
adds a diplomat from one of the members of the U.S.-led coalition that
is beginning to discuss a new sanctions resolution at the U.N Security
Council. The resolution will target the Iranian Revolutionary Guard
Corps (IRGC) and its vast network of companies, which the United States
estimates may include up to one-third of Iran’s total economy.
One focus of the proposed sanctions may be the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines,
a 115-vessel fleet that analysts believe has carried cargo for the
country’s nuclear program. Another target might be the IRGC-owned
construction company Khatam al-Anbiya, and its network of subsidiaries, which are said to build some of Iran’s strategic infrastructure.
To provide economic muscle for the push against Iran, the Obama
administration is working closely with Gulf oil exporters, such as
Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Secretary of State Hillary
Clinton visited Saudi Arabia last month to enlist its help in the
sanctions campaign — and, in particular, to lobby China to back the