For decades ordinary Iranians have had to compete with the rest of the world while being held down by enemies from within and without. As though government mismanagement, poor planning, severe shortages and chronic ineptness of those in control weren’t bad enough, world powers have piled on sanction after sanction, limitation after limitation, all of which have first and foremost hurt the average Iranian.
The sanctions on Iran have had many victims. Iran’s red gold, saffron, is one of those hurt by the sanctions regime. Worth more than gold by weight, Iran’s Saffron is among the world’s highest quality, if not the highest. Of the world’s 250 tons of saffron production, Iran produces over 90%. The rare spice, which requires a very specific climate and soil, and demands excruciatingly high levels of gentle labor, is in huge demand worldwide. Yet, despite the lopsided numbers Iranians have to jump through hoops to sell this prized commodity.
For years, Spain has been repackaging and selling Iran’s saffron as its own but in reality less than 1% of that saffron is produced in Spain. Most of it comes from Iran and a little from Greece. With each added middleman Iranian producer loses a chunk of their profits. The spice that you take for granted to be an iconic Iranian product has to be relabeled to an unrelated, far away country to be sold. Ironically, the saffron that world powers work to cut off from the rest of the world, ultimately ends up being sold in the stores of those countries because it is the most sought-after of its kind.
The despotic rule at home is half the problem. The other half is the equally despotic and demonic international self-appointed arbiters of international “law” and “justice” who invariably end up strengthening the hands of the dictatorial rulers at home. Anyone who supports sanctions that hurt the population is an unwitting part of that despotic and demonic international order.
If the foreign powers had hoped those sanctions would make life miserable enough for the masses to cause a regime change that strategy has proven to be an unmitigated failure. Historically, more often than not, sanctions have had the opposite effect. Saddam’s, Cuban, and North Korean regimes are some of the many examples. In each case, rather than modifying government behavior the end result has been citizen disempowerment.
With the nuclear deal just signed, the Iranian red gold is officially going to make its return to the international markets and reclaim ownership of its place of origin instead of handing that glory to Spain or others.