Philip Gordon offered some mostly sensible views on Iran in congressional testimony last week, including the key points that “the United States should also take care to avoid unnecessary clashes with Russia and China, which only make them even less willing to work with issues of importance to Washington.” Also:
Fifth and finally, the United States should complement its efforts to increase the price Iran pays for lack of compliance with the will of the international community with incentives for Iran to cooperate. So long as Iranians believe the United States is implacably opposed to their country no matter what they do they are unlikely to compromise on the nuclear issue. But if Iranians can be convinced not only that there are high costs of pursing nuclear weapons but also concrete benefits for not doing so, there is a chance that an agreement can be reached.
Right. It’s maddening how many people out there seem to think that stopping Iran from building a nuclear bomb is sufficiently important to be worth risking a catastrophic war over, but not important enough to consider worth building a cooperative relationship with the other major powers over, or offering Iran a path to re-normalization of relations with the United States.
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