Omid Memarian

Monday, May 05, 2008

Iran-US talks await new leadership era
By Omid Memarian
"BERKLEY, California - A week after Democrat Senator Hillary Clinton's harsh remarks that if hardliners in Tehran were to attack Israel, it would result in the "total obliteration" of Iran, a Republican member of the House Select Committee on Intelligence, Peter Hoekstra, suggested on CNN that "engaging in a full-court diplomatic press with Iran is a good thing to begin the process" of reaching out to Tehran.

The hawkish tone of Clinton and the more moderate view of Hoekstra about dealing with Iran's so-called threat leaves a major question unanswered: What can and should the United States do about Iran's alleged influence in Iraq and its nuclear program?

A day after General David Petraeus' briefing to Congress this month, President George W Bush called Iran one of the two "greatest threats to America in this century" - along with al-Qaeda. Bush also warned Iran that if it did not stop arming and training Shi'ite militia in Iraq, then "America will act to protect our interests and our troops". And Bush this week said he released intelligence about suspected North Korea-Syria nuclear collusion to put pressure on Pyongyang and send a message to Iran that it could not hide its own nuclear program." (Read the rest of the piece here- Asia Times)


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