Andrew Pollack's Blog

Technology, Family, Entertainment, Politics, and Random Noise

What should the US do about it's relationship with Iran?

By Andrew Pollack on 09/11/2006 at 09:29 AM EDT

What is the US supposed to do about an Iran that is developing seriously dangerous weapons?

First, let us assume for this discussion that Iran really is developing the capability to produce nukes, or to supply that technology to others. We have, after all, set the stage in such a way that it makes sense for them to do so. In international politics, having nukes lets you sit at the special table. We've made it clear that if we could do so without fear of repercussion we'd already have invaded. If you don't think so, look at our policies. What's the difference between North Korea and Prewar Iraq? The ability to hurt us and our allies that North Korea has but Iraq did not have.

We know what doesn't work just by looking at the current situation in Iran, Afghanistan, and Lebanon. Military force doesn't change minds. Is there a historically successful model to take as an example? I think there is. Take a look at the long term results of Nixon's policy of engagement with China. China in 1970 was a rapidly developing state with Nukes and a poor relationship with the US on a political level. By engaging with China at whatever level was possible, over time we have built up a partnership in business and an understanding politically. China still falls far short of what we'd like to see in a neighbor and I'm not endorsing their policies here; but I would suggest that United States is much less threatened by China today than it was in 1970.

I believe the way to deal with Iran (and Cuba, but that's another issue) is through engagement. The Iranian people are intelligent, strong willed, and proud. Many of them are very progressive politically and favor western style economic and political models. At present, that large minority isn't in power, but the concepts of tolerance and democracy are there. Increased threats and sanctions, the specter of war, and most of all fear will only help those who push a nationalistic military based repressive society -- on both sides of this issue.

There are  - loading -  comments....

You're absolutely rightBy Rob McDonagh on 09/11/2006 at 11:53 AM EDT
There's no question in my mind. Economic and cultural partnerships are the
only way to "win" here.

Iran will develop nuclear weapons, because we have made it very clear to them
that they have to do so in order to defend themselves. We either have to
invade Iran (and that's a staggeringly bad idea - which practically guarantees
that this administration is seriously considering it) or we have to
dramatically increase our mutual understanding and tolerance of each other's

Only Nixon could go to China. Who can go to Iran?
Rock and A Hard PlaceBy Andy Broyles on 09/11/2006 at 12:22 PM EDT
Have you read Fouad Hussein's book on Al-Qaeda?

Here is a link to a der Spegiel article on it...

Basically, Hussein says that the West is being played in a big way...that OBL
wants us to attack Iran to further his him the end does ineed
justify the means.

The only way I see to head this off is a stronger and enforced policy of
isolation by the entire west (yes this means you too France and Russia.) But
that will never happen because of the economic interest France and Russia have
in/with Iran; they are ignoring/damaging the future to prosper today...much the
same as they did with Iraq.

This, I believe, puts the USA in a very bad position, damned if you do, damned
if you don't. The worse thing we could do would be to mount a full scale
attack on Iran. I think that we would 'win' the battle, but lose the war.
My own thoughts on this are...By Devin Olson on 09/15/2006 at 11:18 AM EDT
Interesting premise. I have to admit that I had not considered this in any
way. This isn't so much complete paradigm shift for me; it is more like the
discovery of a piece of quartz in a bag of charcoal -it is something you simply
don't expect to find.

And now that I've found it, I can't stop wondering about it.


Other Recent Stories...

  1. 05/05/2016Is the growing social-sourced economy the modern back door into socialism?Is the growing social-sourced economy the modern back door into socialism? I read a really insightful post a couple of days ago that suggested the use of social network funding sites like “Go Fund Me” and “Kickstarter” have come about and gained popularity in part because the existing economy in no longer serving its purpose for anyone who isn’t already wealthy. Have the traditional ways to get new ventures funded become closed to all but a few who aren’t already connected to them and so onerous as to make ...... 
  2. 04/20/2016Want to be whitelisted? Here are some sensible rules for web site advertisingAn increasing number of websites are now detecting when users have ad-blocking enabled, and refuse to show content unless you "whitelist" their site (disable your ad-blocking for them). I think that is a fair decision on their part, it's how they pay for the site. However, if you want me (and many others) to white list your site, there are some rules you should follow. If you violate these rules, I won't whitelist your site, I'll just find content elsewhere. 1. The total space taken up by advertisements ...... 
  3. 12/30/2015Fantastic new series on Syfy called “The Expanse” – for people who love traditional science fiction[] “The Expanse” is a new science fiction series being broadcast onthe Syfy channelthis winter. It’s closely based on a series of books by author James S. A. Corey beginning with “Leviathan Wakes”. There are 5 books in the “Expanse” series so far. If you’re a fan of the novels you’ll appreciate how closely the books are followed.TIP: The first five episodes are already available on If you’re having trouble getting into the characters and plot, use those to get up to speed.The worlds created for ...... 
  4. 10/20/2015My suggestion is to stay away from PayAnywhere(dot)com  
  5. 08/07/2015Here is one for you VMWARE gurus - particularly if you run ESXi without fancy drive arrays 
  6. 08/06/2015The Killer of Orphans (Orphan Documents) 
  7. 06/02/2015Homeopathic Marketing: Traveler on my Android is now calling itself VERSE. Allow me to translate that for the IBM Notes community... 
  8. 03/17/2015A review of British Airways Premium Economy Service – How to destroy customer goodwill all at once 
  9. 02/26/2015There's a bug in how @TextToTime() and @ToTime() process date strings related to international standards and browser settings. 
  10. 01/21/2015Delivering two new presentations at Developer Camp (EntwicklerCamp) 2015 in Germany 
Click here for more articles.....

pen icon Comment Entry
Your Name
*Your Email
* Your email address is required, but not displayed.
Your thoughts....
Remember Me  

Please wait while your document is saved.