by Barry Rubin
It may well be that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has given the signal for the new phase of
Either this is her attempt to lobby for a tougher line against other administration officials or it's the long-awaited start of the sanctions made necessary by the looming of the administration’s own end-of-the-year deadline to get a deal with
Trying to negotiate, she said, has "produced very little" so "additional pressure is going to be called for."
Her phrasing was interesting, almost as if she was taking a poke at rivals in the administration who are reluctant to take action. "I don't think anyone can doubt that our outreach has produced very little in terms of any kind of a positive response from the Iranians,"
So what is the administration going to do? Try to get the UN and EU to support more sanctions. Here the administration likes to claim that its popularity and patient (arguably too patient) coalition-building will bring broad support.
Yet there’s another development that shows the opposite may be true. An important meeting to discuss sanctions, set for December 22, has been postponed at
Note that the administration keeps claiming that
Buried in a paragraph of an obscure article is explosively important news. A survey of people in 18 Arabic-speaking countries commissioned by a Qatari group—and not fully released yet-- found that a majority see Iran as a bigger threat to their security than Israel and one-third believing Iran is as big a threat as Israel.
This is of historic importance and, of course, reflects reality. This doesn’t mean the Arab attitude toward
Barry Rubin is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center and editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) Journal.
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