Take your seats everyone. The lights are dimming on the world stage and the diplomatic pas de deux between the US and Iran is about to begin.
The Corps de Ballet, aka the EU, will finish its last pretty sanction flutter around the stage leaving Condi and Mahmoud alone in the spotlight.
Will Mahmoud continue the 'slow and sustained movements' of the diplomatic adagio thereby allowing the talks to drag on until 2008? Is he gambling that the DemocRats will win by a landslide in 06 and set the stage for a Dem Pres in '08? Why not? It does make sense if you think about it.
I mean honestly, who would you rather deal with? The Appeasing Dems or that wacky gun-happy Bush Neocon crowd? Mahmoud's mama didn't raise no fool. Remember how North Korea snookered the Clinton Administration? Mahmoud sure does. He's looking forward to the Dhimmicrats for crying out loud. They've given him a human rights pass and cover their eyes when it comes to his state sponsorship of terror. The American Liberal Media seems to be doing everything they can to assist him. Things are coming up dhimmitude as far as Mahmoud is concerned.
But let's not forget there's another danseur center stage...
Will Condi, take advantage of Mahmoud's foot dragging adagio to display a "mastery of lyrical movement" thereby shaming him in front of his people and his mullahs? Or will she misstep thanks to bad advice from those leakin' loons over at State? Time will tell.
In my opinion, there's no way Mahmoud is going to cave. Too much is at stake for him. He has the mullahs at his back and his base whipped to a frenzy.
As you can imagine, there are a wide variety of opinions and metaphors used to describe the subject. Here's a smattering:
First, If you don't read Dr. Sanity you should. She sashays out her take on the subject in Texas Two Step (scroll to June 1)Her theory is not a pretty one but it's definitely worth a read. She starts with an idea that makes me want to tell Condi to dig those black boots out of the back of her closet:
The Iranians could never possibly agree to the pre-condition without believing that they would be losing face--and hence experience shame. This will infuriate Ahmadinejad. Particularly since a woman has shamed them.
The good Doctor reminds us again of the impact of a shame based culture and refers to her magnificent work Shame and the Arab Psyche (another must read if you haven't already) before winding up with this:
Ahmadinejad's next step in this dance will be to do something that will bring him back his honor and eliminate the shame. It will not be something nice, like contributing to the Indonesian relief effort, either. He will have to do something to counter the humiliation of being outmaneuvered by Condi Rice.After that depressing dance with Dr. Sanity and the devil, let's move onto the UPI playground for a ride on the old Iranian Seesaw. Up and down. Up and down. Up and down.
Anyone in the world who is not yet convinced of the sick irrationality and mental instability of the leaders of this regime, will likely be witness to a demonstration on the part of handiness that will remove all doubt.
But that has been part of the Bush Administration's strategy in dealing with Iran--give them enough rope and Ahmadinejad will surely hang himself; and the international community will eventually realize exactly what kind of insanity they are dealing with.
In reviewing the week's events it seem rather that Washington and Tehran are engaged in a dialogue of the deaf. But then again maybe not. Perhaps this was exactly the reply that Washington expected from Tehran, and again, perhaps this was just what Tehran wanted to hear. One should not exclude the possibility that Iran's President Ahmadinejad might not be interested in dialogue.Their conclusion and what a surprise, it's all George Bush's fault. The real shocker? They don't mention the evil Jooooos. Here you go.
Several analysts who monitor developments in Iran believe that Ahmadinejad was placed in the presidency by the ruling theocracy with the specific task of insuring the country gets its nuclear program running as soon as possible.Had enough of that seesaw business? Well, another UPI article Iran Intransigence Threat to NPT likens the Iranian talks as a game of poker and quotes State Department official Larry Semmel.
Then there are those who support the thesis that Ahmadinejad awaits the return of the 12th imam, which according to legend will come to announce the end of the world. Ironically, there are some among Iraq's Shiite community groups of religious supporters who are beginning to call President Bush "the 13th Imam," in reference to the 12 historical Imams sacred to the branch of Shiism, which is dominant in Iran, Iraq and Lebanon. India and Pakistan also have large Shiite populations.
President Bush's support for Shiism was by no means intentional. There is no doubt regarding the effects of his administration's preference in making sure that the Shiites maintain their power in Iran. U.S. support for the Shiites would in part explain the violent terrorist campaign in which mostly Sunnis are engaged in fighting the American presence in Iraq.
In the run-up to the last American presidential elections a high ranking Iranian security chief publicly wished success to George W. Bush, much to the amazement of many American analysts. The reason for that is now clear. President Bush and his administration have done more than any other American president to promote and protect the interests of Iraq's Shiite community. In three short years, Bush succeeded in strengthening not only the Shiite community in Iraq, but gave renewed vigor to the Iranian Islamic revolution across the border in Iran.
So as far as sitting across the table from an American delegation to discuss any matter, except its nuclear program, Ahmadinejad might well play along. And if the talks fail, which they most probably will, Ahmadinejad will walk away, placing all the blame on the Americans. And if sanctions are imposed, as they are likely to be, and the Iranian people are to suffer, once again Bush will appear to be the villain and the Iranian president the hero.
Semmel said the United States' offer to negotiate now was not a capitulation to Iranian brinkmanship, but a well-contemplated next step in an escalating series of offers. "We don't lay everything out at the outset," Semmel said. "In a game of poker you keep certain things reserved."Hold 'em or fold 'em:
"There is some time, but I think with every passing day the situation becomes more precarious," he said. Iran is aware that time is on its side, and he believes that is why this current tussle over uranium enrichment has been brewing for two years.The article goes on to point out that he is clueless and more than willing to kick the can down the road til 2008.
I think their strategy is definitely to drag it out," he said.
"We'll see what the lesson is as this unfolds. We'll see what the end product is when the situation ends." He suggested that diplomacy has a long way to go yet, and seemed to dismiss the possibility of military action to resolve the problem. "We want to be very careful and turn over every rock to be sure Iran comes to negotiations," he said. "We want to make sure we have the right information in Iran. One of the lessons is to be very careful, more careful than we were on Iraq."
The nuclear coda is coming. I just hope everyone is paying attention because when Mahmoud pulls his first overt act of aggression and W goes in and takes out some Iranian nuclear facilities with precision guided bombs I don't want to hear everybody whining about not 'taking the diplomatic route', m'kay?