THE PLANK JUNE 23, 2009
Yglesias on Iran:
[A] regime win would simply make me much less confident that engagement
will work. The hope behind an engagement strategy was that the Supreme
Leader might be inclined to side with the more pragmatic actors inside
the system—guys like former president Rafsanjani and former prime
minister Mousavi. With those people, and most of the Iranian elites of
their ilk, now in open opposition to the regime, any crackdown would
almost by definition entail the sidelining of the people who might be
interested in a deal. Iran would essentially be in the hands of the
most hardline figures, people who just don’t seem interested in
improving relations with other countries.
Under the circumstances, the whole subject of American engagement may well wind up being moot.
As one who was pretty skeptical that Khameinei could be persuaded to give up the bomb in the first place, I tend to agree. Sadly.
The good news is that the international community might be more willing than it has been to get tough with Tehran, and not to dismiss America's view of Iran as mere holdover Bush-era neocon bellicosity.