Using unilateral sanctions

In the USA, the Helms amendment to the 1990 Arms Export Control Act specifies that all activities affecting the development or production of electronics, space systems or equipment, and military aircraft shall be sanctioned if that country violates the Missile Technology Control Regime. In this respect, sanctions were invoked against China in 1993, for its sale of M-11 missile parts to Pakistan, effectively preventing about 400 million dollars of exports (mainly communication satellites) from the USA to China.
Unilateral sanctions may be a justifiable mechanism by which to pressure or draw attention to the sanctioned country to observe agreed or "correct principles" of behaviour, though their effectiveness can vary. It may be the case that the sanction is unlilateral because no other country has the moral will to apply it.
Counter Claim:
Unilateral sanctions may back-fire because they do necessarily enlist international support and credibility, without which the unilateral sanction may have no effectiveness. Unilateral sanctions may have no international credibility because the sanctions may be deemed illegal, serving only the interests of the sanctioning country. Unilateral sanctions may end up hurting the sanctioned country far more economically and otherwise than the sanctioned country.
Government Sanctions
Type Classification:
E: Emanations of other strategies