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How to sort Iran out « Previous | |Next »
February 26, 2005

The article Taking on Tehran by Kenneth Pollack and Ray Takeyh in Foreign Affairs is well worth reading, as it is one of the better accounts of Washington versus Iran.

Washington has little time for the current regime and it certainly wants to derail Iran's nuclear program. But how does it do so? Using diplomacy? The military option? Bombing the nuclear facilities? Pollack and Takeyh suggest a possible pathway:

"With Tehran divided over how to balance its nuclear ambitions with its economic needs, Washington has an opportunity to keep it from crossing the nuclear threshold. Since the economy is a growing concern for the Iranian leadership, Washington can boost its leverage by working with the states that are most important to Tehran's international economic relations: the western European countries and Japan, as well as Russia and China, if they can be persuaded to cooperate. Together, these states must raise the economic stakes of Iran's nuclear aspirations. They must force Tehran to confront a painful choice: either nuclear weapons or economic health. Painting Tehran's alternatives so starkly will require dramatically raising both the returns it would gain for compliance and the price it would pay for defiance."

Interesting eh. It gives a different meaning to regime change.

Pollack and Takeyh conclude:

"Given Iran's economic frailty and shifting power dynamics within its leadership, a strategy offering strong rewards and severe penalties has a reasonable chance of discouraging Tehran from its nuclear plans, especially if the Europeans and the Japanese are willing to participate in full. In fact, it is the only plan that has any real prospect of success at present."

For the moment the imperial president Bush has accepted the need for a united Euro-Atlantic front on Iran strategy.It is better than trying the usual US policy of fostering a counter-revolution in Iran a through CIA-planned coup d'├ętat.

| Posted by Gary Sauer-Thompson at 12:24 PM | | Comments (0)