as the focus on sanctions intensifies, a review of the United States’ experiences in enforcing its own longstanding restrictions on trade with Iran suggests it would be difficult to truly quarantine the Iranian economy.
Black market networks have sprouted up all over the globe to circumvent the sanctions.
This makes perfect sense. Any ban on profitable economic activity, whether it is drug sales, prostitution, or international trade, creates the incentive to evade the ban. Evidence from history suggests that trade sanctions, like other prohibitions, are difficult to enforce and usually have minimal impact.
The unfortunate reality is that the U.S. has only two choices on Iran: accept that they will soon possess nuclear weapons, or use military force to destroy their capabilities. Trade sanctions are just a way of pretending to "do something" without having any impact.