by Barry Rubin
Question: What does
Secretary of State Hilary Clinton says she doesn’t consider the Iranian foreign minister’s statement that they aren’t making the deal to be “the final word.” The Obama Administration will give
Higher sanctions, you might remember, were supposed to come about in September 2009 under the Obama Administration's own original time table. You know when the deadline was for the multi-year European negotiations with
Now at the earliest sanctions probably wouldn’t come before, what, March 2010? Victory for the
Another great power statement says that Iran has "not responded positively" to the plan, "We are disappointed by the lack of follow-up," and "Iran has not engaged in an intensified dialogue and in particular has not accepted to have a new meeting."
Memo to world leaders: Do you think they might be stalling for time?
Note something important here. It isn’t as if the minute they declare that
Now what is the president of the
Can you imagine what would have been said if President George W. Bush, that fumblemouthed clown so unlike the brilliant articulate Obama had said "the importance of having consequences"? What does that phrase mean? Translation: I refuse to threaten
Now a new voice has been added asking for Obama to take tough action. that of Mohsen Makhmalbaf, international spokesman for
Recall that Obama's claim that a tougher stance would hurt the opposition was a major reason for him refusing to condemn the election theft, speak out forcibly against the repression, and hit the regime harder. Well, obviously that's untrue.
But even Makhmalbaf, former campaign spokesman for presidential candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi, thinks the regime won't make a deal because, in his words, "If they agree not to pursue a nuclear bomb and start negotiations, they will lose their supporters. Definitely dialogue is better than war. ... But can you continue your dialogue without any results?"
Answer: Apparently yes.
Now here's where it gets really disgusting.
In 1983, 241
The Justice Department is arguing that implementing the decision "can have significant, detrimental impact on our foreign relations, as well as the reciprocal treatment of the
Really? What is
What this Administration doesn't understand is the value of pressure, leverage, credibility, and lots of other diplomatic techniques. What it should do is: let the court decision be implemented and put on sanctions now. That would be a much better situation:
--Under more pressure the likelihood of its slowing down the program and bargaining will increase. Sure, they won't really make a deal but at least they will be more scared and cautious.
--If sanctions are increased,
--Seeing the West being tougher and the
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.
Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.