Thursday, 29 March 2012

The Race Goes To The SWIFT



I must say, I had never heard of them. But that doesn’t matter.

Because the people who need to have heard of them, have.

You will recall that “SWIFT”, the bank transfer center, has joined the boycott against Iran.

The Belgium based SWIFT is the world’s standard ‘messenger’ for international bank transactions. The effect of this boycott is to make life far more difficult for Iranians looking to do international trade – primarily their vast oil industry.

Of course, the Iranians are wily enough to find alternatives; bartering would by-pass the use of banks; transferring cash or gold would be bulky, but possible; using third country banks (such as pliant Chinese or Russians) might avoid the need for SWIFT.

However, “celebrate the victories”, I say!

And who should be popping a champagne cork about the SWIFT victory?

The guys I’d never heard of….

UANI – United Against Nuclear Iran.

According to their website:

United Against Nuclear Iran (UANI) is a not-for-profit, non-partisan, advocacy group that seeks to prevent Iran from fulfilling its ambition to obtain nuclear weapons. UANI was founded in 2008 by Ambassador Mark D. Wallace, the late Ambassador Richard Holbrooke, Former CIA Director Jim Woolsey and Middle East expert Dennis Ross.

UANI has various boycott campaigns running, including “Hotels”, “Autos”, “Cranes”, “Shipping” etc.

Corporations who have signed-up against trade with Iran include GE, Siemens, Shell, Hitachi and Caterpillar. More companies here.

UANI have lobbied Central and State legislators to push Iranian sanctions into law.

Here’s some of their results:

“The specter of debarment is one of the most effective means of pressuring companies to cease their Iran business and support of the corrupt and criminal Iranian regime. No responsible and profit-minded corporation would jeopardize the millions, if not billions of dollars in revenue from federal and states contracts by doing business with Iran.

“UANI translated this concept to apply to federal, state and local governments across the U.S. via it’s Iran Business Certification Act (IBC Act), which was incorporated into the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Divestment Act of 2010 (CISADA). The unprecedented measures of the IBC Act require companies that do business with the U.S. Government to certify they do not conduct sanctionable business with Iran in order to receive American taxpayer dollars.”

The list of objectives and achievements for this four-years young lobbying organization is astounding.

Here’s an advertising movie (which I didn’t particularly like – but they’re not asking me) to put pressure on Fiat to stop trading with Iran:


UANI – when it comes to "crippling sanctions" you’re doing great work!







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