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Published on August 2nd, 2010 | by Eli Clifton


The Daily Talking Points

Here’s a round-up of mainstream and right-wing news and hawkish opinion about U.S. foreign policy on Iran:

  • Wall Street Journal: Edward J. Epstein discusses the intelligence community’s failure to identify that Iran had not given up its nuclear program in 2003. While Epstein discusses a number of factors contributing to the faulty intelligence, a recurring theme in his analysis is that the lack of diplomatic relations with Tehran made gathering reliable intelligence more difficult.
  • Washington Post: Ray Takeyh and Steven Simon ask, “If Iran came close to nuclear weapons would Obama use force?” They optimistically suggest that a military strike might not result in a Iranian retaliation but, “The White House would have to signal to Tehran that the U.S. military objective was not to overthrow the clerical regime but to enforce the will of the international community by disabling Iran’s nuclear program.” Takeyh and Simon are both fellows at the increasingly hawkish Council on Foreign Relations. (Look for another LobeLog post later this afternoon.)
  • National Review Online: Michael Rubin warns that Turkey may sell U.S. and Israeli military secrets to Iran. Rubin’s latest piece falls in line with the recent far-right’s shift in attitude towards Turkey.  Neoconservatives such as Rubin have been big supporters of U.S.-Turkey and Israel-Turkey political, economic and military relations. But Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s denunciations of the deadly May 31 Israeli raid on the Gaza flotilla and Turkey’s efforts, alongside Brazil, to promote renewed negotiations with the West on Tehran’s nuclear program have resulted in serious backlash against the country once heralded by neoconservatives as a model Muslim democracy. Jim Lobe wrote about the neoconservative offense against Turkey in June.
  • New York Times/International Herald Tribune: Jon Vincour makes the case that sanctions against Iran will, at best, only bring Iran to the negotiating table and, that “the only acceptable outcome in such talks for the United States’ and its allies’ credibility is the elimination of Iran’s nuclear weapons capability — which they have defined as unacceptable, again and again and again.”  Apparently this would be a useless exercise since “talks with Iran could in the end produce nonsolutions wrapped in the slick paper of reasonable compromise.”
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One Response to The Daily Talking Points

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  1. avatar Jon Harrison says:

    The usual suspects can go on as above, but that won’t make the war. Watch for something happening outside our borders that inflames U.S. public opinion, and puts Obama in a position of looking weak (and un-reelectable). Thus the groundwork will be laid. Otherwise it’s just a talking shop.

About the Author


Eli Clifton reports on money in politics and US foreign policy. Eli previously reported for the American Independent News Network, ThinkProgress, and Inter Press Service.

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  • Named after veteran journalist Jim Lobe, LobeLog provides daily expert perspectives on US foreign policy toward the Middle East through investigative reports and analyses from Washington to Tehran and beyond. It became the first weblog to receive the Arthur Ross Award for Distinguished Reporting and Analysis of Foreign Affairs from the American Academy of Diplomacy in 2015.

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