Behind the scenes, diplomacy appears to be making slow progress toward a resolution of the Iranian-nuclear stalemate, possibly early in the new year. But obstacles remain – and they are mostly in Washington, say Flynt and Hillary Mann Leverett at RaceforIran.com.
For more than three decades, many Americans have viewed Iran through the lens of the painful hostage crisis of 1979-81, seeing the Islamic Republic as irrational and dismissive of international law. But the fuller story is more complicated and less frightening, write Flynt and Hillary Mann Leverett.
Having won reelection, President Obama appears interested in a deal on Iran’s nuclear program. But key U.S. commentators continue to embrace baseless fraud charges about Iran’s 2009 election while pressing unrealistic negotiation demands, a recipe for failure, say Flynt and Hillary Mann Leverett at RaceforIran.com.
The expectation at the annual UN General Assembly has been for Iran’s President Ahmadinejad to come across as wacky while the U.S. media lauds Israel’s Prime Minister Netanyahu for his seriousness, except that the script went differently this year, as Flynt and Hillary Mann Leverett note at RaceForIran.com.
The Obama administration is acquiescing to a high-priced lobbying campaign to “delist” the Iranian dissident movement, MEK, from the U.S. terrorism list. The move signals a readiness to intensify the confrontation with Iran, write Flynt and Hillary Mann Leverett at www.RaceForIran.com.
The neocon response toward the anger against the U.S. on the Arab and Muslim “street” is to lash out at those countries and to chastise President Obama for his early efforts at out-reach. But Middle East specialists Flynt and Hillary Mann Leverett say the real problem was the lack of follow-through.
Political pressure is building on the Obama administration to intervene in Syria’s civil war on the side of the anti-government rebels, but an escalation of the violence might only prolong the conflict and prevent serious national reconciliation, say Flynt and Hillary Mann Leverett at RaceForIran.com.
Official Washington, including the U.S. press corps, depicts the Syrian crisis as a civil war between black hats and white hats with no room for talks with dictator Bashar al-Assad and certainly no role for Iranian negotiators, but Flynt and Hillary Mann Leverett at RaceForIran.com see that position as shortsighted.
Toeing the neocon line, Mitt Romney denounced Iran as the world’s “most destabilizing nation” despite polls in the Middle East putting Israel and the United States at the top of that list, as Flynt and Hillary Mann Leverett note at www.RaceForIran.com.
The United States has threatened to impose punishing sanctions on countries importing oil from Iran and – only at the last minute on Thursday – granted China a waiver from the penalties. But these third-party sanctions are likely illegal under trade laws, write Flynt and Hillary Mann Leverett at RaceForIran.com.