Barry Rubin is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center and editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) Journal. His latest books are The Israel-Arab Reader (seventh edition), The Long War for Freedom: The Arab Struggle for Democracy in the Middle East (Wiley), and The Truth About Syria (Palgrave-Macmillan). His latest book is Israel: An Introduction, to be published by Yale University Press in January 2012. You can read more of Barry Rubin's posts at Rubin Reports, and now on his new blog, Rubin Reports, on Pajamas Media
by Barry Rubin
The Biblical verse Deuteronomy 30 quotes God as saying: I have set before thee life and death, the blessing and the curse; therefore choose life that thou may live….”
This notion of choice is the basis for Obama Administration policy toward Iran. And as in the Bible the “correct” choice seems rather obvious. Who would not choose “life”? Answer: The Islamist regime of Iran.
Since late 2010, when he finally decided that he couldn’t make a deal with Iran, Obama turned to his own choice scenario. Here’s how he presented it in his December 8 press conference:
“Iran understands that they have a choice: They can break that isolation by acting responsibly and foreswearing the development of nuclear weapons, which would still allow them to pursue peaceful nuclear power, like every other country that’s a member of the Non-Proliferation Treaty, or they can continue to operate in a fashion that isolates them from the entire world.”
Now, when presented like that, how could Tehran not decide it should be ‘acting responsibly and foreswearing the development of nuclear weapons”? And yet Iran doesn’t make the choice Obama expects. Why is that?
I suspect that you, dear readers, already know much of the answer but you can ask yourself why you haven’t heard this answer more often.
Continue reading U.S. Policy and Iran: Why Obama’s Bargain has Failed
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