"This paper serves as a proof-of-concept testing analytic tools for better understanding the efficacy and consequences of economic influence in terms of sanctions and other similar macroeconomic regimes. The underlying concept developed is a calculation of economic threat rings describing the propensity and utility of countries to participate in such regimes. [â€¦] The existence of national economies inside such rings shows that sanctions are an imprecise weapon. Sanctions necessarily require countries other than the targeted country to accept losses in the global economy in order for sanctions to be effective. When such loses are suffered by countries un-desirous of supporting sanctions for political, economic or other reasons then the prospect for influencing the targeted country is reduced. In this paper the economic threat ring technique is applied to the case of modern day Iran. Iran is used as a case study as it has a long standing record of sanctions being imposed upon it by the United States and others since its 1979 revolution. Iran continues to be of contemporary interest in American foreign policy owing to concerns with respect to its known sponsorship of terrorism and suspected pursuit of nuclear weapons. Based on analysis of the results, conclusions are drawn with respect to the risk opportunities present to American decision makers in terms of international support and the potential success of economic coercion targeted against Iran. Statistical analysis of publicly available balance of trade data for Iran and its interconnected network of related global trading partners are central to this study."
Naval Postgraduate School (U.S.). Program for Culture and Conflict Studies: http://www.nps.edu/Programs/CCS/
Culture and Conflict Review (Spring 2010), v.4 no.1