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Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Obama refuses to consider 'Plan B'

Haaretz reports that Israel has been urging the United States and other countries to begin work on 'Plan B' - a 'paralyzing' round of sanctions against Iran - so that it will be ready when and if the talks with Iran fail, as everyone believes they will. But the United States is refusing to play along.
Before the protests in Iran began, the official explained, Israel's assessment was that the planned American-Iranian dialogue had little chance of succeeding. But in light of the protests, and the need of Iranian hard-liners to shore up their rule, Israel's intelligence community believes the chances of the dialogue even beginning, much less succeeding, are near zero.

"In the situation that has arisen following the protests in Iran, there is much greater international readiness for harsh steps against the regime in Tehran," the official noted.

However, Washington has so far rejected the "Plan B" idea.

American officials involved in the Iranian issue have told their Israeli counterparts that they are aware of the frustration in Israel, Europe and the Gulf states over Washington's insistence on going ahead with the dialogue with Iran, and that they also do not believe the chances of success are high.

Nevertheless, they said, were the U.S. to start laying the groundwork for stiffer sanctions now, this would signal to the Iranians that Obama is not serious about dialogue with Tehran, which would foil any chances of success that the dialogue might have.
And how would Iran know that the US is preparing alternatives? If Obama waits until January to start throwing together sanctions, and they're not ready until sometime between April and July of next year, I can tell you that the probability of an Israeli attack during that period would be quite high.

Just to give you an idea of how pathetically poor our relations with Washington are right now, here's what Haaretz considers the silver lining in the cloud:
This exchange of messages has a positive side: The two countries have at least resumed serious conversation on the Iranian issue, after a hiatus of almost six months.
What could go wrong?


At 1:45 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

Does any one think the Iranians are frightened of tougher sanctions that will never come? Don't hold your breath expecting Tehran to change course soon.

Hopenchange, any one?


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