The Challenge Of Iran


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The Challenge Of Iran

  1. 1. The Challenge of Iran
  2. 2. Welcome Holocaust Deniers!
  3. 5. OOOPS!
  4. 6. Kurds in Iran face death by government firing squads
  5. 21. Hung For Being Homosexual
  6. 28. Stoned to Death for Adultery
  7. 33. 130 Lashes for Drinking Beer
  8. 34. Beaten for Taking A Picture of Police Mistreating Women
  9. 65. Currently Range: 910 Mile Radius
  10. 69. Iran NLA Women Combatants
  11. 75. Women Voting
  12. 76. No Cleavage (or Knees) Allowed
  13. 103. History of the Region <ul><li>“ The Middle East is a region continuously divided against itself.” </li></ul><ul><li>1960s: Radical Arab regimes contested the legitimacy and power of traditional monarchical states. </li></ul><ul><li>1970s: Islamic fundamentalists rejected the prevailing secular order </li></ul><ul><li>1980s:Saddam Hussein enjoyed widespread support against Iran’s Shiite theocracy. </li></ul><ul><li>Today: the Middle East is fracturing along Shiite/Sunni lines. </li></ul>
  14. 104. History of U.S Intervention in the Region <ul><li>Sided with conservative monarchies against socialist republics. </li></ul><ul><li>“ Acquiesced in the brutal suppression of fundamentalist opposition by secular governments.” </li></ul><ul><li>Sided with Iraq against Iran. </li></ul><ul><li>Today the U.S. wants to build a coalition with Sunni regimes in opposition to Iran and its Shiite allies. </li></ul>
  15. 105. Containment of Iran <ul><li>Containment of Iran is Washington’s Primary objective in the Middle East. </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>WHY? (three reasons) </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  16. 106. Containment of Iran <ul><li>Washington’s Primary objective in the Middle East… </li></ul><ul><li>Holds Tehran responsible for violence in Iraq & Afghanistan </li></ul><ul><li>Blames Iran for problems in Lebanon </li></ul><ul><li>Support of Hamas in Palestine </li></ul>
  17. 107. Washington’s Policy <ul><li>What has the U.S. Been doing? (five strategies) </li></ul><ul><li>Building up Navy presence </li></ul><ul><li>Harsh rhetorical policy (“Access of Evil,” IRG as proliferators of WMD, Ahmadinejad’s “members only” jacket is “so 1980s…”) </li></ul><ul><li>$75 million democracy promotion program to support regime change in Iran. </li></ul><ul><li>UN sanctions </li></ul><ul><li>Support from moderate governments in Middle East </li></ul>
  18. 108. Washington’s Goal <ul><li>What is it? (three components) </li></ul>
  19. 109. Washington’s Goal <ul><li>Eliminate Iran’s influence in the region </li></ul><ul><li>Deny Iran the support of its allies </li></ul>
  20. 110. Drawing a Line
  21. 111. <ul><li>The Bush administration is attempting to rally support among Arab governments to oppose Iranian policies in Iraq, Lebanon and the Palestinian territories? </li></ul><ul><li>How is it attempting to accomplish this goal? (two pronged strategy) </li></ul>
  22. 112. <ul><li>$20 billion arms package to Saudi Arabia, UAE, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, and Oman. </li></ul><ul><li>Attempting to rejuvenate Israeli-Palestinian peace process (to refocus the region off of the Palestinian problem and on the threat caused by Iran) </li></ul>
  23. 113. “ New” Solution? <ul><li>Why does the Bush administration see containing Iran as the solution to the problem’s in the Middle East? </li></ul><ul><li>Opportunity to reshape the region to finally accept U.S. dominance and the strength of Israel. </li></ul><ul><li>How does the Bush administration hope to do this? </li></ul>
  24. 114. <ul><li>By enlisting the support of Sunni Arab states against the threat of Iran and Shiite primacy in the region …(e.g. Saudi Arabia and Egypt vs. Hezbollah in Lebanon). </li></ul><ul><li>Specifically, what major area of focus does this support entail (from the reading)? </li></ul>
  25. 115. <ul><li>The Bush administration seeks Sunni support in the reconstruction of Iraq to offset Iranian influence. </li></ul>
  26. 116. Can the “new” solution Work?
  27. 117. Can it Work? <ul><li>Not according to Nasr and Takeyh </li></ul><ul><li>“ Washington’s containment strategy is unsound, cannot be implemented effectively, and will probably make matters worse.” </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>WHY? (three errors) </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  28. 118. Error #1 <ul><li>Nasr and Takeyh claim that while Iran presents serious problems for the U.S. (quest for nuclear capability, interventions in Iraq, opposition to Israeli-Palestinian peace) the bigger issue is the Bush administration’s conviction that Iran cannot be an integral component of a stable Middle East. </li></ul><ul><li>“ Not unlike Russia and China, Iran is a growing power seeking to become a pivotal state in its region.” </li></ul>
  29. 119. Error #1 <ul><li>Senator Joseph R. Biden of Delaware, said that any sanctions on Iran that included an embargo on purchases of its oil &quot;would have a dramatic, dramatic negative impact.&quot; (NYT February 15, 2006) </li></ul>
  30. 120. Error #1 <ul><li>Senator Chuck Hagel , a Nebraska Republican, called Iran &quot;the most powerful country in the Middle East&quot; and &quot;the most difficult.&quot; (NYT February 15, 2006 ) </li></ul>Doing the “robot”
  31. 121. Error #2 <ul><li>Washington’s assumption that Iran can be handled like the former Soviet Union. </li></ul><ul><li>Washington’s application of the Cold War model to Middle East. </li></ul><ul><li>What’s the problem? </li></ul>
  32. 122. Error #2 <ul><li>Washington’s containment policy toward Iran places it in the middle between Israel and pro-Sunni (anti-Iranian) governments on the one side and the Shiite Iraqi (pro-Iranian) government on the other. </li></ul><ul><li>Rather than containing Iran, it could effectively sandwich the U.S. between opposing sides. </li></ul>
  33. 123. Error #3 <ul><li>Failure to recognize the diverse views of Arab states (the “new” solution assumes broad Arab solidarity). Is there such solidarity? (4 examples) </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Saudi Arabia and Bahrain oppose Iranian expansion and fear Iranian influence in their internal affairs. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Egypt and Jordan fear that rising Iranian power equates to an erosion of their own influence in the region (particularly over the Palestinian issue). </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Qatar and UAE have no Shiite minority problem and enjoy economic relations with Tehran. (Don’t want U.S. to rock the boat). </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Even U.S. allies in the region will pursue their own interests first, even if this means dealing with a powerful Iran, regardless of U.S. policy toward Iran. </li></ul></ul></ul>
  34. 124. Can U.S. containment of Iran be implemented? <ul><li>? </li></ul><ul><li>Why or Why Not? </li></ul><ul><li>(Four reasons) </li></ul>
  35. 125. Can U.S. containment of Iran be implemented? <ul><li>Iraqi military (dismantled in 2003) was primary instrument in containing Iran. </li></ul><ul><li>United States would have to commit large numbers of troops to the region indefinitely. </li></ul><ul><li>Given the already wide anti-American sentiment in the Gulf, redeployment of troops would be unacceptable to states in the region. </li></ul><ul><li>Only alternative would be for the U.S. to rely on weaker regional actors- but even major arms sales cannot shift the balance of power away from Iran as the largest state in the Persian Gulf (size, population, economy). </li></ul>
  36. 126. Middle East Peace <ul><li>Washington assumes that focusing on the Israeli-Palestinian peace process will redirect Arab states’ worries toward Iran. Tehran disagrees. </li></ul><ul><li>Why? What’s wrong with the Bush administration’s reliance on the Middle East peace process as the centerpiece of its strategy to contain Iran? (four problems) </li></ul>
  37. 127. Middle East Peace <ul><li>What’s wrong with the Bush administration’s reliance on the Middle East peace process as the linchpin of its strategy to contain Iran? </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Doubtful that the peace process can be successfully relaunched. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Arab leaders demand final status talks while Israel and the Bush administration want “momentum toward peace.” </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Unlikely Israelis and Palestinians will agree on concessions necessary for a working peace. </li></ul></ul></ul>
  38. 128. <ul><ul><ul><li>Arab people do not share the anti-Iranian sentiment of their governments, and continue to see Israel as a greater threat than Iran. Ahmadinejad’s denunciations of Israel and support for Hamas and Hezbollah have won him the support of the Arab masses. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Tehran enjoys significant soft power in the Middle East. Does America enjoy soft power in the Middle East? Does Israel? </li></ul></ul></ul>Middle East Peace
  39. 129. Palestinian Issue or Failing States? <ul><li>Washington assumes that focusing on the Israeli-Palestinian peace process will redirect Arab states’ worries toward Iran. Tehran disagrees. </li></ul><ul><li>What do Nasr and Takeyh say? Is the crucial issue the Palestinian issue, or is it failing states? If failing states which ones? </li></ul>
  40. 130. Palestinian Issue or Failing States? <ul><li>Not Palestinian issue but failing states (Afghanistan, Iraq, Lebanon) hold the key to balance of power in the region. </li></ul><ul><li>WHY? (three reasons) </li></ul>
  41. 131. Palestinian Issue or Failing States? <ul><li>Growing Iranian influence expanding in power vacuum of failing states. </li></ul><ul><li>Center of gravity has shifted from the Levant to the Persian Gulf. It is now more likely that peace and stability in the Persian Gulf would bring peace to the Levant (rather than the other way around). </li></ul>
  42. 133. Palestinian Issue or Failing States? <ul><li>Also, in the 1980s when America drummed up Arab support to contain Iran it resulted in radicalized Sunni extremism and al Qaeda. Containing Iran by the same means today would mean promoting Sunni extremism all over again. </li></ul>
  43. 134. Basically <ul><li>Washington’s Cold War strategy to contain Iran will: </li></ul><ul><li>Sink Afghanistan, Iraq and Lebanon into greater chaos </li></ul><ul><li>Inflame Islamic radicalism </li></ul><ul><li>Commit the U.S. to a lengthy and costly presence in the Middle East . </li></ul>
  44. 135. Alternatives? <ul><li>Instead of militarizing the Persian Gulf and building unstable alliances to box Iran in, What could the U.S. do? </li></ul><ul><li>Move toward a new regional security system. </li></ul><ul><li>What would this new regional security system entail? (five components) </li></ul>
  45. 136. Alternatives? <ul><ul><ul><li>Feature all local actors </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Rest on a treaty pledging the inviolability of the region’s borders </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Arms control pacts </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Common market with free trade zones </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Mechanism for adjudicating disputes </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Does this look more like a collective security organization or a collective defense organization? </li></ul></ul></ul>
  46. 137. <ul><li>What are some of the benefits of a new regional security system? (five) </li></ul><ul><li>Bring Shiite-dominated Iraq and Iran into partnership, rather than conflict </li></ul><ul><li>Opportunity for Iran to legitimize its power </li></ul><ul><li>Recognize autonomy of Iraq (not just a subsidiary of Iran) </li></ul><ul><li>Saudi Arabia and Iran could move beyond zero-sum competition in Iraq, and lead to recognition of the interests of Sunni and Kurdish minorities in Iraq. </li></ul><ul><li>Serve the interests of America’s European allies, China and Russia- all of which would benefit from stability in the Middle East. </li></ul>
  47. 138. Other Considerations <ul><li>Andrew Grotto’s crib sheet facts: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Iran is attempting to build a manufacturing infrastructure for producing enriched uranium. (Peaceful or military?) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>There is little doubt that Iran wants the ability to manufacture nuclear weapons but there is no “smoking gun.” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>No economic reason/ global market for nuclear reactor fuel </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Iran has massive petroleum reserves </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  48. 139. Other Considerations <ul><li>Andrew Grotto’s crib sheet facts: </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Iran received nuclear assistance from A.Q Khan, including instructions for shaping uranium metal into hemispheric shapes (claims it didn’t know) </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>Pakistani scientist and metallurgical engineer, widely regarded as the founder of Pakistan’s nuclear program.
  49. 140. Other Considerations <ul><li>Andrew Grotto’s crib sheet facts: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Iran is attempting to build a manufacturing infrastructure for producing enriched uranium. (Peaceful or military?) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>There is little doubt that Iran wants the ability to manufacture nuclear weapons but there is no “smoking gun.” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>No economic reason/ global market for nuclear reactor fuel </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Iran has massive petroleum reserves </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Iran received nuclear assistance from A.Q Khan, including instructions for shaping uranium metal into hemispheric shapes (claims it didn’t know) </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Evidence that Iran has studied how to build tunnels for atomic testing, and designs for modifying its ballistic missiles to accommodate a nuclear warhead. </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Not clear that Iran would use nuclear weapon if it had one </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  50. 141. Other Considerations <ul><li>Andrew Grotto’s crib sheet facts: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>3) An Iranian nuclear weapons capability would fundamentally threaten U.S. and allied interests in the Middle East and beyond. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>NPT prohibits Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>NPT does not prohibit Iran from enriching uranium (peaceful and disclosed) </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>If Iran acquired nuclear weapons, it would be only OPEC state- tremendous leverage setting oil prices </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Nukes could seriously encourage Iran’s increased support for terrorism </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  51. 142. Other Considerations <ul><li>Andrew Grotto’s crib sheet facts: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Iran’s recent (April, 2006) announcement that it enriched uranium was politically motivated (not a breakthrough toward the imminent production of a weapon) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Iran is at least three years from having the fissile materials needed for a crude nuclear bomb, and 5-10 years from making one (still time for diplomacy). </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Military strikes against Iran are extremely unlikely any time soon. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Military strikes could kill 10,000 Iranians, permanently alienate Iran from the U.S., invoke retaliation, and devastate oil markets- driving oil prices to $100/barrel- been there done that.. </li></ul></ul></ul>
  52. 143. Karim Sadjadpour The next U.S. president should : Associate Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Focus initially on areas where the United States and Iran share common interests, such as Iraq and Afghanistan, rather than issues with little or no common interest, like the nuclear issue or the Israeli–Palestinian conflict.
  53. 144. <ul><li>Refrain from any grand overtures to Tehran which risk redeeming Iranian President Ahmadinejad’s policies and enhancing his bid for reelection in June of 2009.  </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid rhetoric that threatens violence. This only empowers Tehran’s hard-liners and paints the United States as the aggressor.   </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul>Karim Sadjadpour The next U.S. president should : Associate Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.
  54. 145. <ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Deal with those who hold power in Iran, namely Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. </li></ul><ul><li>Support policies that facilitate, rather than impede, Iran’s modernization and reintegration in the global economy. </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul>Karim Sadjadpour The next U.S. president should : Associate Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.
  55. 146. <ul><li>Maintain a multilateral approach. Tehran is highly adept at exploiting rifts in the international community. </li></ul><ul><li>Resist attempts by spoilers within Iran to torpedo a diplomatic breakthrough.  </li></ul><ul><li>Pursue “secret” or “private” discussions—proven to have a greater success rate.   </li></ul>Karim Sadjadpour The next U.S. president should : Associate Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.
  56. 147. <ul><li>Representative Jim Saxton (R-NJ) is skeptical that the U.S. can deter Iran the way it once deterred the former Soviet Union. </li></ul>
  57. 148. <ul><li>Maurice Greenberg, who met with Ahmadinejad in September 2006: “We can’t deal with him. You can’t deal with this guy.” </li></ul>former chairman and CEO of American International Group (AIG)
  58. 149. <ul><li>Fareed Zakaria sees no reason not to use sanctions and embargoes against states such as Iran, But he suggests that we also need to “allow a viable way out.” That is to say, we need to negotiate and not merely mandate. </li></ul>
  59. 150. Cliff Kupchan acknowledges that President Bush has definitely strained the relationship between Washington and Tehran, he points out that Iran “did agree to suspend enrichment for two years.” Kupchan suggests that there may be more than one way of dealing with Iran. Cliff Kupchan is Director, Europe and Eurasia, at the Eurasia Group, a political risk consultancy.
  60. 151. <ul><li>Joel Rosenthal suggests that Ahmadinejad is using the Bush administration’s threats to “rally nationalist sentiment” and take the Iranian people’s focus off domestic problems such as corruption and unemployment. Rosenthal suggests that it’s time the United States allows democracy to change the Iranian regime from the inside. He reminds us that for all of Iran’s meddling in Iraq, it was Bush that handed Iran an entrance into Iraq in the first place. </li></ul>Joel H. Rosenthal is president of the Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs.
  61. 152. <ul><li>While we faced a much bigger threat from Mao Zedong in the 1970s, who claimed that China could withstand the loss of hundreds of millions in a nuclear confrontation and still come out standing due to its large population, Betts points out that we’ve “yet to hear anything that chilling from Ahmadinejad.” Betts claims that anyone “who beats the drum for war against Iran fits the classic definition of a fanatic.” </li></ul><ul><li>Furthermore, Betts assures us that in addition to causing even greater alienation from the Muslim world, a US attack on Iran would most likely only delay Iran’s nuclear capabilities for a few years. This is because the US has “given Tehran ample warning to hide important elements of the necessary infrastructure.” Betts also reminds us that nuclear weapons technology is sixty years old. “The crusade to keep all second-rate powers from acquiring a nuclear ultimately a rear-guard action.” </li></ul>Richard Betts: Adjunct Senior Fellow for National Security Studies
  62. 153. Author and founder of the Eurasia Group Ian Bremmer reports that he heard Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator, Ali Larijani, speak at the Arab Strategy Forum in Dubai, where Larijani “invited other Middle Eastern states to join Iran in a regional security organization that excludes the United States and called on Arab governments to develop nuclear programs to facilitate a nuclear OPEC.” Bremmer agrees with Rosenthal that Ahmadinejad is attempting to win “support at home by taking a harder-line position on the nuclear program.” Bremmer also points out that “Iran isn’t a totalitarian state like North Korea. There’s real opposition in the country to other elements of Ahmadinejad’s political agenda.” Bremmer rejects the Bush administration’s military approach to Iran, suggesting that President Bush needs to “develop a more nuanced and moderate approach, one that stops feeding Ahmadinejad new opportunities to play the defiant champion to the United States” (Gramercy Round, 2007:72-77).
  63. 154. <ul><li>David C. Hendrickson and Robert W. Tucker (2006:50-1) maintain that “the confident assertions that Iran has decided to acquire nuclear weapons and will bend every effort to do so is simply worst-case speculation dressed up as fact.” </li></ul><ul><li>They insist that there is no evidence to assume that Iran wants anything more than nuclear energy for civilian uses. </li></ul>
  64. 155. <ul><li>The United States needs to be very aware of Iran’s growing political influence in the international community as well. In a sermon commencing the month of Ramadan 2007, the Ayatollah Ali Khamenei accused the Bush administration of war crimes in Iraq, and of attempting to undermine Islam in the Middle East. </li></ul>
  65. 156. <ul><li>Amidst chants from worshipers: “Death to America,” Khamenei stated that he has “a firm belief that one day this current US president and the American officials will be tried in a fair international court for the atrocities committed in Iraq.” </li></ul>
  66. 157. Final Remarks <ul><li>While diplomacy with Iran may have its challenges, it should be pursued at every length. Iran has a conscription army and nearly 10 million eligible males between the ages of 18 and 32. </li></ul>
  67. 158. Final Remarks <ul><li>Iran’s conventional military potential aside, US Intelligence assesses that Iran will likely have nuclear weapons capability within the decade (Select Committee on Intelligence, 2006). </li></ul>
  68. 159. James R. Schlesinger Professor of Strategic Studies at Georgetown University and former chairman of the United States Institute of Peace (1992-2004). Chester Crocker suggests that President Bush has “squandered” America’s opportunity to secure Iran’s cooperation. In a previous era, America could have obtained a “ truly global consensus” and presented it to the Iranians. “ But the diplomacy of the global war on terror has mortgaged America’s capacity to line up such support.”