Iran's Nuclear Calculations

, US Politics

Ray Takeyh proposes that the best way to persuade Iran not to join the nuclear 'club' is for the U.S. to ease economic restrictions in Iran's Nuclear Calculations (World Policy Journal).

This "more adroit diplomacy and economic engagement" should, he proposes, be backed by a newly formed coalition of the willing to exert pressure. Presumably the aftermath of the Iraq conflict makes this idea politically worthless at home, as well as likely to trigger huge vitriol from Chirac, Schroeder, Putin & Kofi.

Is it not enough to offer economic engagement without the threat of force compelling acquiescence - removing the threat to Iran's ideaology posed by the U.S. and dismantling one of the pillars on which those who advocate a nuclear Iran base their arguments? Iran is understandably concerned (having being labelled as an axis-of-evil country) to find itself surrounded by U.S. Forces in Afghanistan and Iraq, is it not time for the U.S. to engage positively, shore up the reformers and work towards normal relations?

There's an article in Asia Times today (Reform or revolution, Iran's hard choice) which discusses what change could come to Iran - the author Tomaj Keyvani concludes

"Whatever happens, one can be certain that any US military pressure on Iran will lead to less space for reformists to act on the internal scene, as Iranians are likely to forget internal problems and focus on the external threat in the same way they did during the Iraqi invasion of Iran. This would in turn lead to the conservatives getting the time they need to consolidate their power and purge the internal ranks in the same way they did in the long war of 1980-88."

Posted by Paul at September 24, 2003 03:12 AM |

Visitor Feedback

Could someone explain why Iran should accede to US requests and why it is unreasonable for it to wish to possess a nuclear deterrent?

Posted by: Bonobo at September 30, 2003 06:10 PM