2011 has been a tumultuous year for tensions between Iran and the west. In January, the talk of Iran’s nuclear weapons program was stalled. Britain, China, Russia, France and the US were forced to walk away after the Iranian delegation implemented preconditions that the UN drop sanctions concerning the Tehran nuclear program. In February, protests broke out across the Mid East and in Northern Africa as “Arab Spring” hit very close to it’s home. Thousands of protesters rallied in Tehran in support of the Tunisia and Egypt uprisings.
In June, the protesters used a different tactic on the second anniversary of the 2009 reelection of Mahmud Ahmadinejad. Special forces were deployed to block the streets, but this didn’t stop the protesters. They took to the streets and chanted protest mantras anyway. In October, the US Department of Justice uncovered a plot to assassinate a Saudi diplomat. The two men were working for the Iranian government. Iran called the allegations “laughable”, however, a UN resolution that condemned the action was supported by over one hundred countries. President Barack Obama did not rule out any options in making Iran pay for their mistakes and said, “this is part of a pattern of dangerous and reckless behavior by the Iranian government.”
November was the month of nuclear activities when the International Atomic Energy Agency announced their assessment of Tehran’s nuclear program. Director Yukiya Amano was quoted as saying “The information indicates that Iran has carried out activities relevant to the development of a nuclear explosive device,” Amano said. “It also indicates that, prior to the end of 2003, these activities took place under a structured program and that some activities may still be ongoing.” Iran still maintains that all of their nuclear activity is to support their country by a means of providing energy to their citizens.
The west did not take these allegations so lightly. Later in the month, Central Bank and was sanctioned. Britain was the first to take most of the blame from Iran and their Tehran embassy was stormed by protesters on November 29th. In December, Iran claimed to have shot down an American drone. On December 12th, Iran announced that they were running a drill to practice closing the Straigh Of Hormuz, a region where about 40 percent of the world’s oil passes through. Parliament deputy Parviz Sorouri gave a warning of”If the world wants to make the region insecure we will make the world insecure.”