The Islamic Republic of Iran is not about to implode. Nevertheless, the misguided idea that it may do so is becoming enshrined as conventional wisdom in Washington.
For President Obama, this misconception provides a bit of cover; it helps obscure his failure to follow up on his campaign promises about engaging Iran with any serious, strategically grounded proposals. Meanwhile, those who have never supported diplomatic engagement with Iran are now pushing the idea that the Tehran government might collapse to support their arguments for military strikes against Iranian nuclear targets and adopting “regime change” as the ultimate goal of America’s Iran policy.… Seguir leyendo »
Tehran's disclosure that it is building a second uranium enrichment plant near the holy city of Qum has derailed the Obama administration’s already faltering efforts to engage with Iran. The United States will now cling even more tightly to the futile hope that international pressure and domestic instability will induce major changes in Iranian decision-making.
Indeed, the meeting on Thursday in Geneva of the United Nations Security Council’s five permanent members and Germany with Iran (the “five plus one” talks) will not be an occasion for strategic discussion but for delivering an ultimatum: Iran will have to agree to pre-emptive limitations on its nuclear program or face what Secretary of State Hillary Clinton calls “crippling” sanctions.… Seguir leyendo »
President Obama's Iran policy has, in all likelihood, already failed. On its present course, the White House’s approach will not stop Tehran’s development of a nuclear fuel program — or, as Iran’s successful test of a medium-range, solid-fuel missile last week underscored, military capacities of other sorts. It will also not provide an alternative to continued antagonism between the United States and Iran — a posture that for 30 years has proved increasingly damaging to the interests of the United States and its allies in the Middle East.
This judgment may seem both premature and overly severe. We do not make it happily.… Seguir leyendo »
Tras la última National Intelligence Estimate [Evaluación Nacional de Información] sobre el programa nuclear de Irán, los Demócratas y otros sectores están criticando al presidente Bush por haber exagerado una vez más la amenaza de las armas nucleares. Estas críticas, aunque merecidas, no abordan la incógnita política más acuciante: ¿qué hacemos ahora? Está claro que Estados Unidos no puede hacer como si Irán no existiera. Es posible que Teherán haya suspendido los aspectos de su programa nuclear estrictamente relacionados con las armas, pero sigue en situación de producir uranio enriquecido sin que se haya puesto en vigor ningún acuerdo de limitación de dicha capacidad.… Seguir leyendo »
In the wake of the new National Intelligence Estimate on Iran’s nuclear program, Democrats and others are criticizing President Bush for again having “hyped” a nuclear weapons threat. This criticism, while deserved, does not address the critical policy question: What do we do now?
Clearly, the United States cannot ignore Iran. Tehran may have suspended the purely weapons-related aspects of its nuclear program, but it continues to master uranium enrichment, with no agreed limits in place. And Iran is well positioned either to facilitate or thwart American objectives in Iraq and across the Middle East.
At the same time, the Bush administration’s single-minded insistence on increasing international pressure on Iran seems increasingly detached from reality.… Seguir leyendo »