Rethinking our Iran strategy
Los Angeles Times / Robin Wright and Robert Litwak
13-Sep-2009 (2 comments)

Three decades of assumptions about Iran -- including the premises behind Washington's recent outreach to Tehran -- have been transformed by its stunning uprising. It's time for a policy rethink.

The Obama administration's offer to engage was the right idea. But the theocracy's brutal crackdown on the opposition since the June 12 presidential election, followed by the purge of senior politicians in show trials and an alarming increase in general executions, marks a turning point for Iran's revolution. U.S. policy now needs a broader approach. Recent history offers relevant guidelines.

The three most important revolutions of the 20th century -- for their political innovation and impact -- happened in the Soviet Union, China and Iran. At the peak of revolutionary paranoia, the Soviet Union and China witnessed turmoil similar to what is happening today in Iran. Soon afterward, however, Moscow and Beijing altered course. Both began the move from defiant revolutionary regime to a normal state willing to work within the international order and mended relations with the United States.

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Very intelligent!

by Mehdi on

The guy knows what he's talking about! If there were a few more people like him resolving Iran's situation would be a piece of cake. But there are so many influences who want war and are not interested in improvement, peace and prosperity!

Dan Huck

Can The President's Lobby Give Him Enough Support?

by Dan Huck on

The Obama Administration, in my opinion, has the intelligence and organizational ability to help accomplish a shift of this nature. It is an unnatural state for the American people to be in, being haters and demonizers of other nations and their peoples, and it lifts a burden from our shoulders when we escape Satan's grasp, so to speak.


Millions of Americans privately decry our nations' being led around by the nose by a nation of less than seven million people, yet, as we all know, our sanctions bellicosity is being choreographed by Malcolm Hoenlein, the executive vice chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, with the aid of allies in our Congress such as the House Chairman of Foreign Affairs Committee, Howand Berman.


Foreign policy is not supposed to be dictated by Congress. The reason for that: it is the weakest link for resisting interests dominated by other nations;  Congresswomen and men have too much on their plate for them to be very well informed independent of what the lobbyists tell them, and well-funded, well-organized interests such as the Israeli Lobby are very capable of, and routinely threaten members of Congress to unseat them. With that lobby's past record, this is no laughing matter. For Congress to be challenged at the polls is the way the system works, however the power of a nationally connected cohesive group with the ability to heavily influence editorial boards on local  as well as national media makes for an extreme temptation for members not only to cave in to the pressure, but to come to the point where they sincerely buy in to what the lobby is selling.  Or, better yet, from the Lobby's perspective, to have been an activist for the Israeli cause before even thinking of running for Congress. Rep. Berman is a case in point, who laughingly makes the point in fund raising speeches "I was a Zionist long before I was a Democrat".