Remaking the Middle East - by Philip Giraldi
While it is unrealistic to assume that Iran and the United States can resolve all of their differences, it is equally unrealistic to assume that sustained and serious negotiation will bear no fruit as the neoconservatives persistently argue in their case against Tehran. Iran is, at the end of the day, like any other nation. It is not suicidal, and it is responsive to the same needs and priorities that drive any modern nation state. Recent opinion polls clearly demonstrate that the Iranian people are far from anti-Western, quite the contrary. Iran is resentful of its status as a pariah, which has been self-inflicted by leaders like Ahmadinejad, and there is considerable evidence that many in its political leadership would like to make it a more "normal" country. It can only do so if the threat from Washington subsides. The United States likewise, cast in the role of the school bully ever since the events of 9/11, is sorely in need of a change of direction and a refurbishing of its image. That change of direction could be signaled by a resolution of the issues dividing Washington from Tehran, a troubled relationship that has been long viewed as one of the most intractable in the world.