Friday, April 20, 2012

Bits and Pieces - Iran Edition

And now we face the rushing wave of op-ed pieces on what's next in the negotiations with Iran. Just before last week's meeting, there was such a wave, much of which was highly repetitive and a somewhat smaller portion was wrong. If I had a spare week or so, I would go over all that and show which writers you needn't read any more on the subject because they were so far off on that first meeting.

But I don't have a spare week or so. Instead, I'll pick up some of the better commentary from this week. Subsequent pieces are likely to repeat some of this or go off on hobbyhorses.

If you want to follow only one commenter on negotiating with Iran, Gary Sick is the one. He was involved in the 1979 negotiations over the hostage crisis. He has a tumblr to which he posts his own work and articles that he finds worth reading.

Sick recommends an article by John Limbert and another in which Sick looks at what the history of Iran's nuclear program might tell us about the present.

BTW, Al Monitor is a good source of information and commentary about the Iran negotiations. Laura Rozen has some inside stuff there from last week's negotiations. Looks like the Iranians are really concerned about the sanctions.

Michael Brzoska, Oliver Meier, and Götz Neuneck gives their seven steps toward an agreement. Look for a lot of articles like this over the next month. This is likely among the better of them, but I don't have time to work through it today.

And, finally, Max Fischer provides some polling data that says that Americans are more afraid of Iran now than we were of the Soviet Union in the 1980s. I would be less generous to the media than he is.

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