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Posted by on May 14, 2007 in At TMV | 21 comments

USA & Iran: Crazy Diplomacy?

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While the US administration is openly seeking Iran’s support to sort out the bloody mess in Iraq, it also keeps throwing mysterious spanners that may yet again stall the delicate diplomatic moves that are afoot to make any progress.

Nasser Karimi of the Associated Press writes: “The U.S. and Iran said Sunday they will hold upcoming talks in Baghdad about improving Iraq’s security — a historic political turnabout for the two countries with the most influence over Iraq’s future.

“Expectations of progress remain low, however, with tough issues at stake and mutual suspicions running high. Even as it announced the talks, Iran lashed out at Vice President Dick Cheney’s weekend warnings about its nuclear program, saying it would retaliate if the U.S. attacked it.

“Yet the two sides said they were setting aside such differences to focus on a narrow issue — Iraq’s continued violence and sharp political deterioration.

” ‘The purpose is to try to make sure that the Iranians play a productive role in Iraq,’ said Gordon Johndroe, the White House’s National Security Council spokesman.

“There had been speculation of a Cabinet-level meeting at that Egypt conference, but neither Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice nor Iran’s foreign minister wanted to make the initial move, passing up what would have been the first high-level, face-to-face talks since the U.S. broke off relations with Tehran after the 1979 hostage crisis.

“Until this spring, the Bush administration had dismissed calls for both outreach to Iran and Syria. At the Egyptian conference, Rice did sit down for a talk with Syria’s top diplomat…”

For more read here…

Funny…Why a few days ago at Sharm El-Sheik in Egypt Iran’s foreign minister boycotted a dinner of diplomats where he was to be seated directly across from Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. The rumour mill has it that this happened because a female violinist entertaining the gathering was “dressed too revealingly.”

Shows that American diplomats are either missing out on a great opportunity to engage Iran at this delicate stage, or are just being flippant.

According to another report: “ ‘I don’t know which woman he was afraid of, the woman in the red dress or the secretary of state,” State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said Friday.”

“Rice and Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki met earlier at a lunch Thursday but exchanged only pleasantries. Neither appeared ready to make the first move for a real meeting.

“ ‘You can ask him why he didn’t make an effort,’ Rice told reporters Friday. ‘I’m not given to chasing anyone’.”

How silly can one be!!! Are American foreign affairs being conducted by such people who do not even know the basic nuances of diplomacy. Are sartorial preferences of an inconsequential violinist going to govern the US-Iran talks/relationship so crucial now to sort out the Iraqi mess?

Meanwhile the MSNBC reports: “Condoleezza Rice, the ­secretary of state, calls her Iran strategy ‘rebalancing’ – a concerted and comprehensive effort to push back against Tehran’s advances in the region and in its nuclear programme.”
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