Friday, July 30, 2010

Russia, Iran and Diplomacy

There is no one "Russian foreign policy" on Iran but a collection of policies that the Kremlin attempts to balance and harmonize. Russia's straddling of the fence can only be sustained if a diplomatic process gets back off the ground in September.

UPDATE: Do we have a two-track approach--Brussels and Beijing--on this issue?

There is absolutely no possibility of a Libyan style capitulation. Sanctions will erode and lack of oil and gas is going to hurt US friends more than it will hurt Iran.

For if that is on the table, why did not Iranians take it in 2003?

And why have Iranian president and Iranian Supreme-Jurisprudent repeatedly stressed that they will not accept limits on their nuclear rights?

If that is the expectation in DC, I suggest that they will be disappointed.

Anyway, Iranians are much more powerful than Libyans - 10 times the population, better educated population, institutional framework of government, and entrenchment in the Levant, Mesopotamia, Afghanistan, and also Pakistan.

Furthermore, iron-clad security guarantees to Iran are not forthcoming. They are not possible.

And then you are adding support for Hezbollah etc.; that is a non-starter.

Best you can hope for is for this specific TRR fuel-swap to be consummated.
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