The sanctions don't touch Iran's gasoline or its domestic energy sector. They will allow China to continue developing three large oil fields as well as oil refineries that will eliminate Iran's need for gasoline imports. They will permit Russia to switch on the Busheir nuclear plant this summer. The sanctions came six months later than the U.S. wanted. During that time Iran's centrifuges have enriched more than 2,000 pounds of uranium.
Ahmadinejad is getting stronger at home, as well. A few months ago he and Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei were fighting with the opposition Green movement for control of the streets of Tehran and other major cities. Now, with the anniversary of the fraudulent election that touched off that rebellion approaching this Saturday, the streets are quiet. For now, at least, the Green movement has been quelled.
New Sanctions Fail to Impose Serious Costs on Iran -Paul Koring
"These are not the crippling sanctions that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had promised about a year ago," said James Lindsay, senior vice-president of the Council on Foreign Relations.
"China and Russia insisted that the resolution contain nothing that would impose broad costs on the Iranian economy - or damage Chinese and Russian commercial interests." The sanctions leave untouched the $100 billion in annual oil exports that underpin Iran's Islamic regime and pay for its nuclear program, which Washington says is an ill-disguised effort to acquire nuclear weapons.
(Globe and Mail-Canada)
See also What U.S. Paid for Iran Sanctions -Benny Avni (New York Post)