Michael Hirsh on West/Iran

The latest round of sanctions was too much. Hirsh has got it—there was a moment after the first round of sanctions when Ahmadinejad was weakened and isolated. He was easy pickings if Khamenei (via Larijani and Rafsanjani) were given some carrots.

Now of course Khamenei is moving closer to Ahmad. Leaving me with that the question of whether Bush has wanted war this whole time. Certainly many in his administration have, and I know Bush did have them targeted, but I thought events might force something out of him. Now I’m worried.

King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia declined a White House invitation and publicly stated the US occupation in Iraq is illegal and that the government of Iraq is a Shia sectarian force. King Abdullah of Jordan, a major US ally, has similarly had to decline a White House invitation–he can’t afford to be seen in public with our president who is beyond radioactive.

And now a this brinkmanship with Iran…..

clipped from www.msnbc.msn.com

The problem is that the United States and Britain, along with their partners France and Germany, have successfully created a huge, powerful machine of coercion against Iran—economic, political, diplomatic. And now they don’t quite know what to do with it. Similarly, the Iranians are divided about how to react, with Ahmadinejad and now apparently Khamenei himself counseling defiance while Tehran’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs tries to find a way back to the table. Yes, pressure works. But exerting too much of it for too long, without offering the carrot of conciliation that can encourage moderates, usually gives the edge back to the hardliners.

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Published in: on March 30, 2007 at 4:51 pm  Leave a Comment  

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