"Critics of any discussions might respond that the Iranians might say yes, but to only low-level talks in Switzerland, not in Washington and Tehran. In so doing, the mullahs could bind the United States to meaningless, stalling discussions while the regime perfected uranium enrichment, increased the range and accuracy of its ballistic missiles and advanced its nuclear warhead designs.
But so what? Minus the direct talks, this is more or less what is happening now. Would a President John McCain tolerate pointless discussions? Probably not. Would Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton? Perhaps. Mr. Obama and Mrs. Clinton may well prefer to see the clerical regime go nuclear than strike it preventively. But if that is where they would go, their opponents can do little about it. The only thing that could conceivably change their minds would be direct talks on the big issues separating the two countries. The mullahs have a way of driving their foreign interlocutors nuts. Just ask the European negotiators who’ve had to deal with them. Meeting Iranian leaders is perhaps the best way to turn doves into hawks.
For far too long, the United States has failed to wage a war of ideas with the Iranian regime over the proposal that scares them the most: the reopening of the American Embassy. " Reuel Gerecht
Careful, Reuel. The truly demented among you will begin to suspect you of MODERATION. Those who daily await the news that Ahmedinajad has launched his legions into Iraq in a re-enactment of the Anschluss tolerate no deviationist revisionism. This instinct for party discipline is part of their heritage. Michael Rubin, the movement’s "Igor" figure is rising again in the pages of the party press. He will be watching you. Rubin has revived his old tale of my feckless statement to some magazine to the effect that national level intelligence analysts do not like GWB’s thinking and do not wish him and the likes of Rubin well. Surprise! Or maybe Mufaja’a!
Seriously (more or less), Gerecht argues here for diplomatic engagmeent with the Iranians to see what the possibilities might be for a negotiated end to the "veiling" in their nuclear effort. That makes sense to me.
As he says, a real negotiation will, at the very least, expose the mullahs’s as merely tactical in their statements concerning their willingness to discuss serious issues seriously.
If the neocon Jacobins want to fight Iran, such a negotiation would be a politically necessary preliminary step.
Careful, Reuel. They will be watching you now.
Yes. I know. You are not in the picture. Maybe next time. pl