Around Town …

The Australian newspaper reported earlier this week that the Australian government has blocked several shipments of controlled items including water pumps used to cool nuclear reactors.  Ominously titled “Kevin Rudd’s secret war on Iran,” the reporter who penned the article asks readers to contact them if they have had exports blocked by the government.  That …

Settlement in Iran Sanctions Clark Truck Spare Parts Case

Last week a former official of the Clark Material Handling Company (CMHC) has signed a Settlement Agreement with the Department of Commerce, Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) involving the illegal export of truck spare parts to Iran.  BIS alleges that the former CMHC Vice President of Global Parts Marketing, Robert Quinn, made a false …

Iranian Oil Sanctions Bill Passed in Senate by Voice Vote

An unnamed Congressional staffer says in this morning’s Politico on Iran sanctions that it is “[h]ard to imagine tough sanctions in both bills getting less tough in conference.”  The staffer is referring to a new set of economic sanctions on Iran that have been making it ways through the Congress for some time now.   …

Around Town …

In a bizarre but an increasingly all too common approach in the new Washington of “change,” the U.S. Envoy to the Middle East, George Mitchell, suggested this week that the U.S. should consider using economic sanctions to force Israel to negotiate with the Palestinians.  Our best ally in the region bullied, while we coddle terrorists. Some …

Around Town …

The Western Sahara Research Watch (WSRW) has kept open an online petition urging the European Commission to cease granting licenses to EU vessels fishing the waters off the coast of the Western Sahara.  “No state in the world has recognised the Moroccan annexation of Western Sahara. Still, the EU is paying millions of Euros annually …

We Could Learn a Thing or Two from Japan

According to the Japan Trade Compliance blog, the owners of a small trading company have been arrested for exporting household items to North Korea without a license.  The likely punishment?  Violations of the Foreign Exchange and Foreign Trade Law face jail time for as much as give years and/or a fine of five million yen, or …

Around Town …

U.S. Citizen Sentenced for Illegal Exports of Controlled Aircraft Parts to Iran.  Last week the Department of Justice announced that the “director of Monarch Aviation Pte, Ltd. (“Monarch”), a Singapore company that imported and exported military and commercial aircraft components for more than 20 years, was sentenced … in federal court in Brooklyn to 46 …

“New” Approach on Sudan, Coddling Terrorists and Human Rights Abusers

White House press secretary Robert Gibbs announced yesterday that the President would seek engage the regime of state sponsor of terror Sudan.   According to an article in Politico, the Administration “would help enact a more “comprehensive policy” for dealing with Sudan’s political instability.”   This “new” approach will not advance U.S. interests, but will …

Zimbabwe Opposition Figure Calls for Easing of Economic Sanctions; Not a Good Move

In a speech in Spain last week, Zimbabwean Prime Minister and opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai made a plea to European leaders to ease what he called “restrictive measures” (i.e., economic sanctions) on his country. Ironically, many of the U.S. and European sanctions were put in place in response to the arrest of Tsvangirai and his …

Around town …

Every now and then, usually when I post about it,  I receive critical e-mail from folks about my stance on export control reform and why massive reforms of the system should be made in a piecemeal fashion.  One of the reasons for this stance is that “reform” (updating a more accurate term) of the processes …

OFAC Publishes TSRA Guidance, Spare Parts and Repairs for Medical Devices

The Treasury Department, Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) yesterday published guidance related to the shipment of spare parts for medical devices initially exported pursuant to a Trade Sanctions Reform Act (TSRA) license.  It also addresses what exporters need to do when medical devices breaks and need to be returned for repair.  Under both scenarios, OFAC …

Around town …

Over at the Export Law Blog, Clif Burns pens on a speech by Commerce Secretary Gary Locke on export control reforms.   While it made a whole lot of sense in the mid 1990s to reform the old export control system – Coordinating Committee for Multilateral Export Controls – I still think the current system is …

In the News …

A former leader of the terrorist group Tamil Tigers claims the group was making efforts to acquire nuclear weapons technology from the West. On the heals of likely Congressional approval of a $7.5 billion foreign assistance package to Pakistan, Islamabad officials “categorically rejected” accusations by unnamed U.S. officials published in the New York Times that …

Around Town …

The Pentagon will spearhead a review of export control laws and regulations, while the House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman plans to introduce legislation on the same matter.  The talisman will be waved again? Clif Burns at the ExportLawBlog tells us how “Sparky Stays Home“. Meanwhile across the pond, the UK Export Control Office has published …

Syria Sanctions Folly Will Put Controlled U.S. Technology in Iranian Hands

The Syrian Envoy to the United States, Imad Moustapha, wasted no time announcing the proposed easing of U.S. sanctions on state sponsor of terrorism, the Syrian Arab Republic.  What did the U.S. get in exchange?  Likely not enough to warrant the easing of trade restrictions and other cooperation.   Details are sparse, but according to …

Around the Hemisphere …

The Bolivarian Axis makes a move in Honduras to institutionalize leftist rule.  This is how it was done in Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia, and Nicaragua.  They will trample rule of law, minority rights, and slowly take control of the country.   A blogger claiming to be the son of an Honduran Senator states that during a Congressional …

Orbitz As Proxy for State Sponsor of Terrorism Cuba?

Americans lobbying on behalf of a state sponsor of terrorism? Well, as odd it as it may sound, that is exactly what Orbitz decided to do last month when it launched a lobbying effort to ease travel restrictions on Cuba.  For all intents and purposes, it might as well register as a lobbyist for the …

NYU Students Study Foreign Aid Programs

The Development Research Institute at NYU has a program that studies how to best hold agencies accountable for delivering foreign assistance to poor countries.  DRI’s mission is to “expand the number and diversity of serious commentators on the state of foreign aid and development.” DRI’s “ultimate goal is to have a positive impact on the …

Economic Sanctions on Madagascar Coup Plotters Needed

Far away places and small countries such as Madagascar rarely make the mainstream news in the United States for any appreciable amount of time; however, U.S. taxpayers should take a closer look because their tax dollars – in the form of foreign assistance – will soon be in the hands of an illegitimate government that …

Freezing Pirate Assets?

On April 15, 2009, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced a series of steps that the State Department was going to start implementing to expand efforts to combat piracy on the high seas. There were four main points including:  1. Sending an envoy envoy to Brussels to attend an international Somali peacekeeping and development meeting; 2.  Additional …