White House Announces New Sanctions On Iran After Israel Attack

White House National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan announced on Tuesday that the United States will be placing new sanctions against Iran after its attacks against Israel on Saturday.

In a press release, Sullivan revealed that President Joe Biden is “coordinating with allies and partners, including the G7, and with bipartisan leaders in Congress, on a comprehensive response” to Iran’s move against Israel.

“In the coming days, the United States will impose new sanctions targeting Iran, including its missile and drone program as well as new sanctions against entities supporting the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and Iran’s Defense Ministry,” the announcement read.

“In addition, we continue to work through the Department of Defense and U.S. Central Command to further strengthen and expand the successful integration of air and missile defense and early warning systems across the Middle East to further erode the effectiveness of Iran’s missile and UAV capabilities,” the statement read further.

Promising strong action from the U.S., Sullivan promised action that will “continue a steady drumbeat of pressure to contain and degrade Iran’s military capacity and effectiveness and confront the full range of its problematic behaviors.”

“Over the last three years, in addition to missile and drone-related sanctions, the United States has sanctioned over 600 individuals and entities connected to terrorism, terrorist financing and other forms of illicit trade, horrific human rights abuses, and support for proxy terrorist groups, including Hamas, Hezbollah, the Houthis, and Kataib Hezbollah,” adding that “the pressure will continue.”

“We will not hesitate to continue to take action, in coordination with allies and partners around the world, and with Congress, to hold the Iranian government accountable for its malicious and destabilizing actions,” he said further.

The new sanctions come as the Biden administration has faced criticism from the right for his less-than-tough stance on Iran since President Joe Biden took office. Notable among the president’s actions and inactions that have been condemned as too weak on the Middle East country is the administration’s decision to extend a waiver that gave Iran access to $10 billion in November.

The administration also unblocked $6 billion in sanctions relief to Iran in September as part of a prisoner swap deal, a move which former President Donald Trump slammed as an “absolute disaster.”

Weeks after, Israel was attacked by Hamas on Oct. 7, an attack believed to have been sponsored by Iran, a designated top sponsor of State terrorism.

While the Biden administration was criticized for inadvertently empowering Iran’s proxy attack on Israel, the White House denied it, with White House National Security Communications Advisor John Kirby claiming that Iran did not have access to any of the unfrozen funds by the time Hamas carried out its attack against Israel.

“It’s not that we’re not enforcing sanctions. We have been enforcing them. As a matter of fact, we’ve added sanctions. We’ve sanctioned 400 entities in Iran just in the beginning of this administration, let alone the sanctions that came before us,” Kirby explained,adding, “As for the fungibility, again, that money was never going to be tapped by the Iranian regime. They were never going to see it themselves. It was always going to go to vendors that we approved to go to buy humanitarian assistance and medical and food… directly to the Iranian people. The regime was never going to see that or feel that, and they haven’t asked for it.”