June 2, 2006


Rabbit and carrot: US turns the tables on Iran (Kaveh L Afrasiabi, 6/03/06, Asia Times)

The United States has pulled a rabbit out of its nearly empty diplomatic hat by offering direct talks with Iran - a superb maneuver that almost instantly turns the tables on Tehran by putting it on the defensive.

The pitch is nearly perfect, that is, that the White House is "bowing to pressure" by offering direct talks with the defiant Iranians, to quote the Financial Times, which, like most of the mainstream Western media, spun the development as a sign of "patient US diplomacy".

Thus two cheers for US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice for reportedly winning over the anti-talk forces in the Defense Department and within the White House. Soft power over hard power, persuasive diplomacy over the art of war. Or is it?

The less room we have to manuever the more likely we've got you right where we want you.

Posted by Orrin Judd at June 2, 2006 12:20 PM
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