Iran, despite having the second-largest deposits of oil in the world, lacks refining capacity and must import 40 percent of its gasoline. The threat of a cutoff is the ultimate weapon, short of force, to be used in compelling Iran to abide by the resolutions of the international community and refrain from producing nuclear weapons.
Hillary's comment can only have brought a sigh of relief to the lips of the Iranian mullahs. It sends the clear signal that the Obama administration lacks the toughness to impose real sanctions and its disapproval can be safely disregarded in Tehran.
If gasoline imports were curtailed, the "ordinary" Iranians would blame their own government. They know that Iran has been isolated from the world by its own government, and surveys show this cutoff rankles the population mightily. They are very worried about getting the cold shoulder from the rest of the world and worry about the consequences for their already blighted and fragile economy.
A gasoline shortage can only stoke the fires of rebellion so brilliantly flaring forth on Iranian streets and can only bolster the courage of those who brave gunfire and police clubs to express their demands for liberty.
Hillary: Don't go squishy on us now!
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