Carol Platt Liebau: A Big Waste of Time

Monday, May 28, 2007

A Big Waste of Time

This piece details the "talks" between the US and Iran.

A close reading indicates that no real progress was achieved -- as, indeed, one might expect. It's difficult to understand what incentive Iran actually has to alter any of its behavior. After all, the Ahmadinejad government derives from the talks an increase in status through direct negotiation with America, and buys time to continue building nuclear bombs (that topic was, conveniently, off the agenda).

The Iranians' position is that the violence in Iraq is inspired by the U.S. presence there -- a no-lose proposition. After all, if the US withdraws, it enables Iran to do even more to destabilize Iraq and attempt to install a Shiite theocracy there. If the U.S. holds on, Iran continues to arm terrorists and other adversaries of the democratically elected government, reveling in the Democrats' attacks on President Bush and the weakening of America through the irresolution and indecision broadcast by left-wing attempts to force surrender.

Even an elementary understanding of diplomacy suggests that for meaningful negotiation to take place, both sides have to be at the table in good faith, and both have to want something. At this point, it's not clear that the Iranians either want or need anything other than the continuance of the status quo. So what reason do they have to meet any of the US's requirements or requests? What incentive do they have to be helpful in the least to US interests?

The whole "discussion" strikes me as an enormous waste of time.


Blogger stackja1945 said...

In December 1941, Japan negotiated with the USA. Negotiations were terminated on December 7th 1941.

6:56 PM  

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