So-called "crippling sanctions" -- the Washington cliche du jour, I guess -- seem to be, to people like me, who want to see Iran's nuclear program stopped but don't want to see military forced used to stop it, the best option available. Except that I've been reminded, in this article by Gal Luft, that it gasoline sanctions, in particular, might not work:
Iran is much less vulnerable to gasoline sanctions than is commonly believed on Capitol Hill, and its foreign gasoline dependence is dropping by the day. The little-known reason is that President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has imposed dramatic measures to eliminate this strategic vulnerability. He has massively expanded the country's refinery infrastructure. Seven of Iran's nine existing refineries are undergoing expansion projects; seven new refineries are on the drawing board or already under construction. In three to five years, these projects will double Iran's refining capacity, putting it on par with Saudi Arabia. These efforts, in addition to an effective petrol rationing scheme, have slashed Iran's need to import petroleum products.
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