can’t see the forest

Iran Determined to Defy Hypocrisy

Following the expiration of yet another deadline on Wednesday, the International Atomic Energy Agency reports that Iran is not only continuing but is redoubling its efforts to produce fuel for what Teheran insists is a peaceful nuclear program.

The US government believes that Iran’s program is a cover for the development of nuclear weapons, a dubious privelege already enjoyed by the United States and many of Iran’s neighbors, including Israel and Pakistan. US officials apparently do not see an incongruity in these circumstances. If Iran does indeed seek to develop nuclear weapons—a proposition supported by no conclusive evidence—many in Iran and elsewhere might argue that the aims are justified by precedent and political necessity.

The US has announced increases in its Persian Gulf presence and plans to send an additional aircraft carrier group in the coming days.

Amid cries for intensified UN sanctions against Iran, al-Jazeera reports that Moscow’s UN envoy has called for temperance. “We should not lose sight of the goal and the goal is not to have a resolution or to impose sanctions,” said Vitaly Churkin. “The goal is to accomplish a political outcome for this situation.”

Washington and Moscow, no doubt, have different ideas about the desired “political outcome.” US officials desire an Iran which cannot serve as an example of successful defiance of its unilateral agenda, an agenda which Russian president Vladimir Putin openly criticized at the recent security conference in Munich.

US Undersecretary of State Nicholas Burns commented that “it’s Iran’s refusal to talk which right now has gotten Iran into a lot of hot water. Iran is increasingly isolated, and we hope that Iran is going to choose negotiations.”

Yet Iranian officials, particularly Ali Larijani, have repeatedly stated that they are open to any negotiation which does not involve preconditions set by the US. Iran does not refuse to negotiate; it does wisely refuse to negotiate in a predetermined dialog as anything other than a political equal. There is a big difference.

Iranian students demonstrate

Increasing sanctions may only serve to make life more difficult for the Iranian people and to give the Bush administration a further excuse for considering military maneuvers. It is up to the United States, not to Iran, to change its paradigm of dominance and coercion through intimidation. Only then will political circumstances and international relations begin to improve throughout the Middle East.


One Response

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  1. waitmyturn22 said, on 3/14/07 at 9:52 am

    I hope this will make my Vladimir Putin stocks go up so I make some money on it :-)

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