The Daily Talking Points

News and views on U.S.-Iran relations for February 17:

  • The Washington Post: Council on Foreign Relations Senior Fellow Ray Takeyh calls for the U.S. to “empower the Green Movement.” Takeyh acknowledges that Russian, Chinese, and Middle Eastern allies are unlikely to support tighter sanctions and says that “it would be rash to employ force against Iran’s suspected nuclear installations and radicalize the Arab populace just as forces of moderation and democracy seem ascendant.“ “Whether motivated by idealism or a desire to advance practical security concerns, the West must recognize that the only thing standing between the mullahs and the bomb is the Green Movement,” he argues. Takeyh concludes, “In the end, the most effective means of disarming the Islamic Republic and ending its reign of terror is to invest in the indomitable Green Movement.”
  • Commentary: J.E. Dyer blogs on the transit of two Iranian war ships through the Suez Canal and the impact the news has had on the shekel, the U.S. dollar, and the prices of crude oil and gold. “The important facts are that revolutionary, terror-sponsoring Iran — under U.S., EU, and UN sanctions — feels free to conduct this deployment, and Syria feels free to cooperate in it,” says Dyer. She argues that the deployment and Iran’s support for Hezbollah is equivalent to “battle lines being drawn” and “Iran’s posture is hardening: the Islamic revolutionary regime is ‘all in.’”
  • The Jerusalem Post: Hilary Leila Krieger reports on the new Iran sanctions bill introduced in Congress which would require greater disclosure from publicly traded companies that have links to Iran. Krieger interviews the Foundation for Defense of Democracies’s Mark Dubowitz, who tells her, “The hardest part has been trying to find out exactly what these companies are actually doing,” and, “The brilliance of this law is that it forces these companies themselves to disclose” their Iran dealings. Krieger adds, “Dubowitz’s organization has already identified two dozen US companies or international companies with US subsidiaries that would have to disclose such ties.”

Eli Clifton

Eli Clifton reports on money in politics and US foreign policy. He is a co-founder of the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft. Eli previously reported for the American Independent News Network, ThinkProgress, and Inter Press Service.