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Negotiations Obama Style
An Unequal Truce

While President Obama called for congressional restraint on Iran in the State of the Union, the Iranian-allied Houthi rebels had taken and were holding part of Yemen’s presidential palace. Reports are starting to emerge that they’ve been bought off with an updated power-sharing agreement, but the Yemeni government seems to be on the brink of collapse.

This marked the end of a week in which Iran pressed forward aggressively on several fronts: the Mullahs signed a defense cooperation agreement with Putin’s Russia, and were caught helping Hezbollah plan an attack on Israel. (“Caught” meaning that an Iranian General was incinerated by an Israeli helicopter-fired missile while inspecting preparations in the Golan Heights with top Hezbollah brass.)

It is increasingly clear that the President’s view of the way negotiations work is sharply divergent with that of the Iranian government. The President has made every effort to surrender leverage preemptively as a sign of good faith and to keep the heat off Iran during the (seemingly endless) negotiations. Tehran sees this as a sign of weakness and has pressed its luck at every opportunity—in Syria, in Iraq, and now in Yemen, with Hezbollah, and with Russia.

Those within the Administration may want to consider if they’re sending the signal they think they’re sending. Those in Congress may well be justified in thinking that if this is what cooperation looks like, losing it does not seem a negative side effect of renewed sanctions so much as one of their main aims.

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  • Anthony

    “The fact of the matter is that the redistribution of global power has produced a situation in which the US is no longer the sole hegemon. The US has to acknowledge the fact that the world is much more complex. The spread of conflict throughout the Middle East is currently precipitated more by the rise of religious sectarianism than by American interventionism. In these volatile circumstances, greater attention must be given to the national interests of countries such as Turkey, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Israel. By the same token, the interests of any one of them must not be allowed to become the total interest of the US.” Another perspective as we go forward in the world of 2015.

    • Corlyss

      Blah blah blah

      • Anthony

        Some thinkers/analysts/writers/scholars/etc. attempt to look honestly at 21st century world – regards.

  • Fat_Man

    Lord, it’s hard to love someone who doesn’t love you. Sounds like a country & western song about how she ran off with his best friend, his truck, and his dog. Unfortunately, it’s not possible to laugh at this one.

  • Corlyss

    Obama’s ideal of negotiations on behalf of America = BOHICA

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