August 24, 2006

What Iran Wants

Blink and you might miss it, but it's buried here in this Washington Post article about the latest Iranian response on nuclear talks:

... They said Iran wanted a brief reference in the offer to a possible Iranian role in a regional security arrangement -- a critical concern for the Islamic Republic, given U.S. hostility to its current leaders -- to be fleshed out. ...

I quote a friend's two word summation of the beginning and end of Iran's diplomatic goals: security guarantees.

They want a guarantee that they won't be the target of a military first strike. They don't want to be the next Iraq and there's no reason at all for them to think they won't be. The U.S. is the only country whose word on the matter means anything, which naturally makes it a little difficult for even the most well-meaning European negotiators to get very far. Germany, France and the U.K. all working together can't promise Khamenei and Ahmadinejad that they won't be woken up some morning soon by air strikes on Tehran.

What negotiators are having to come to Iran with now, at it's most basic, is a demand to stop enrichment without any hope of meaningful reward. If the U.S. continues to be bent on attacking even if they comply, where's the benefit for them in arranging trade deals with other countries that they might not later find themselves in a position to collect on or fulfill?

Posted by natasha at August 24, 2006 12:26 PM | Iran | Technorati links |

This is typical Bush foreign policy. Iran must be completely evil and wrong. There is ony black and white; no grays.

Oh, and it goes without saying that anyone who tries to offer even the slightest balance to the story is a liberal apologist who is aiding terrorism and making the U.S. weak.

Posted by: Scott at August 26, 2006 03:05 PM