May 2, 2023
Contact: Sarah Stern
EMET Offers Its Profound Gratitude to US Senator James E. Risch and 14 other Senators for Letter on Antisemitism in our Nation’s Federally Funded Middle Eastern Studies Programs to the Department of Education
(May 2, 2023, Washington, DC) –
As Sanctions on Iran are rapidly sunsetting, EMET Offers Deep and Wholehearted Gratitude to Chairman Michael McCaul, (R-Texas) Rep. Michelle Steel (R-California), Rep. Susan Lee (D-Nevada), Senator Tim Scott, (R-South Carolina), Senator Jacky Rosen (D-Nevada) as well as the entire group of 24 bipartisan and bicameral lawmakers for introducing and sponsoring The Solidify Iran Sanction Act, (SISA)
It is with profound appreciation and gratitude that EMET notes the introduction by a bipartisan, bicameral group of legislators in the House and Senate of the Solidifying Iran Sanctions Act, (SISA). This act will permanently authorize a law allowing the President to implement punishing sanctions on Iran’s economy. The act is intended to conclusively and enduringly extend the Iran Sanctions Act (ISA) of 1996 which is set to completely expire in 2026 and which is currently subject to a mandatory sunset provision that requires its continual renewal by Congress. Given Iran’s increasing progress toward a nuclear weapon and its funding of terrorist proxies throughout the globe. the extension of SISA is an essential tool in promoting the long-stated U.S. policy of preventing Iran from becoming a nuclear power and cutting off their illicit funding of terrorism throughout the globe. SISA allows the U.S. executive branch to impose sanctions on Iran’s energy sector in order to thwart its attempt to obtain a nuclear weapon.
As EMET has repeatedly warned, Iran continues to actively sponsor terrorism around the globe, has carried out rocket attacks against U.S. bases in Syria and Iraq, has attacked oil fields in Saudi Arabia, and has repeatedly threatened naval ships in international waters. Iran constantly signals its intent to destroy our ally, Israel, as well as the United States, and threatens Israel by the training and arming of proxies in countries that surround it. Tehran has also provided drones to Moscow for their deadly use in its brutal war in Ukraine.
“The Iran Sanctions Act is one of the most important tools in U.S. law to compel Iran to abandon its dangerous and destabilizing behavior,” Representative McCaul said in a statement. The elimination of the arbitrary sunset provision from the law means that sanctions will be lifted only if Iran stops its threatening behavior and will make it more difficult for Iran to wait out the sanctions until they expire.
Representative Steel noted that Iran “has made clear that it has no interest in participating in the international community or working towards peace.”
After approximately 2 years of fruitless negotiations, the Biden administration failed to reach a deal with Iran that would have lifted sanctions in return for Iran’s abandoning its nuclear weapons program. United Nations atomic energy regulators of the International Atomic Energy Administration, (I.A.E.A) have warned that Iran has enriched enough nuclear energy for at least one nuclear bomb, and the IAEA has found particles of highly enriched uranium at the 87 percent level, perilously close to the 90 percent level needed for a nuclear bomb. The Pentagon warned last month that Iran has enough nuclear material to develop a nuclear bomb within 12 days.
It is in the context of this stark reality that EMET urges the swift passage of the Solidifying Iran Sanctions Act in both chambers in order to prevent Iran’s inexorable march to a nuclear weapon. It is imperative that this essential tool be strengthened and extended as a means of pressing Iran to give up its nuclear ambitions.
Says Sarah Stern, EMET Founder, and President, “This bill comes at exactly the right time, and is particularly important now, as Iran is galloping towards nuclear breakout, as Iran has created a pincer grasp og terrorist proxies surrounding the state of Israel, and as some of the provisions of the JCPOA have already sunsetted, and as others are about to sunset. In October 2020, the ban on conventional weapons, as well as the ban on countries offering visas to Iranian nuclear scientists has already sunsetted, This coming October 2023, an entire array of bans will be lifted, including, among other things, a ban on Iran’s research, development and production of Iranian ballistic missiles, a ban on the unfettered access of the IAEA into suspicious Iranian nuclear sites, and a ban on the import and export of drones and other missile technology. EMET remains profoundly and immensely grateful to all of the bill’s sponsors, within both chambers and on both sides of the aisle.”
About The Endowment for Middle East Truth
Founded in 2005, EMET is a pro-American, pro-Israel, and pro-human rights, foreign policy think tank and policy shop in Washington, D.C. For more information, please visit www.emetonline.org
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