Sunday, December 16, 2007

Iran Strengthened By NIE

Meir Javedanfar writes that hope of a strong united international front against Iran is gone, after the NIE gave state sponsor of terrorism a clean bill of health regarding nuclear weapons:

It is one thing when the IAEA gives Iran positive points for being “generally truthful about its past.” After all, many argue that the IAEA is a toothless bureaucratic organization, at the mercy of different governments and their political agendas.

But when the multi-billion dollar US intelligence machine declares Iran halted its nuclear weapons program back in 2003, then as far as many Middle Eastern countries are concerned, the “danger” label has been taken off Iran’s nuclear program.

Although many Sunni countries are worried about Tehran’s activities in Iraq and Lebanon, they were more worried about the prospects of war between Washington and Tehran. Now that this danger has dissipated, it is likely that even more countries in the region will decide to engage Iran, as means of influencing its strategy and behavior in the Middle East. This will make the job of imposing sanctions against Iran much more difficult than before.

It will also enable Iran to come out of regional isolation, thus ruining all the celebration that took place in Washington and Jerusalem following the Annapolis show of solidarity.
In just one document, in which incendiary conclusions are misrepresented and not supported by the substance of the report and which some suggest was artfully written to damage President Bush, the writers have managed to undo years and years of effort to contain the world's leading state sponsor of terror and its nuclear ambitions.

This will only embolden Iran. A more confident and less vilified Iran is more likely to continue to engage in activities which will make war more likely.

Changing Our View Of Iran
Spying and Policymaking Don't Mix

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