The US is building up its power in the Persian Gulf and that is an indicator that America is treating the development of Iran’s nuclear weapons seriously. It’s also an indication that America is planning a military solution to the issue, should diplomacy fail.
In her article, “From crisis to opportunity“, Gabrielle Rifkind gives us some hope that diplomatic efforts will succeed. She says here:
The current international crisis presents new opportunities. The political landscape in Iran is changing. There are increasing signs that President Ahmadinejad may have suffered a near-fatal blow. In an unprecedented criticism of his bellicose foreign policy rhetoric and his poor record on promised reforms at home, 150 members of the parliament signed a letter blaming him for raging inflation, soaring food prices, high unemployment, and failure to deliver a budget on time.
That is good. In fact, that is both great and a relief to those of us whoÂ watch Iran.
The question is this: Is it enough?
Those working behind the scenes in Iran have more power than those whoÂ visibly oppose Ahmadinejad.
Ms. Rifkind intimates that the US failed to take advantage of Iranian overtures and losingÂ a chance at fixing relations:
A little-known fact is that in 2003 the Iranian government, under Mohammad Khatami, discussed a secret Grand Bargain with US interlocutors at the time of the fall of Saddam Hussein. In return for US security guarantees of non-interference in the regime, the end of sanctions and the opening of the possibility of joining the World Trade Organization, Iran offered support for a two-state solution for Israel and Palestine in which it said it would accept the Arab League plan for ending the conflict. It also offered to give up supporting terrorist groups.
It is a Little-known fact, which is probably why I’ve known this fact.Â What we don’t know is who sabotaged the negotiations. My understandingÂ is that the negotiations fell flat on the Iranian side.
After all, the US is a pragmatic country and welcomed those Iranian overtures. The problem is that there are silent actors on the Iranian side that have a tremendous amount of power. Those actors do NOT want an American or EUÂ diplomatic victory. They wantÂ an Iranian military victory.
I think that we all understand the difference.Â Â Â