Sunday, April 26, 2015

The Elephant in the Room of the Iran Deal


 
I think that for something to qualify as an "elephant in the room" it has to be perfectly obvious to all concerned parties, yet too uncomfortable for anyone to deal with, or even acknowledge. So the elephant in the room of the Iran deal might not properly qualify a such, since very few seem to know it's even there. I'm referring to the absolutely crucial fact that this deal is not simply between the Iranians and the U.S., but rather between Iran and the allied powers of the United States, Russia, China, France, Great Britain, and Germany.

The impression in the media is that this is all about the American-Iranian relationship, with a focus on Israel, whereas I believe that it is the cooperative action between the six states that might be the most important part of this. I mean, how incredible is it that we are engaged in a cooperative venture with China and Russia? Pretty incredible, I say. One reason that conditions aren't harsher is that the Russians and Chinese just don't see Iran like we do. Their interests aren't the same as ours. If the US puts the kibosh on the deal, which seems pretty likely, the other states might just decide to lift their sanctions anyway and go back to business as usual.

I'm pretty reconciled to the agreement not happening. If it is the will of the people, as represented by Congress, to nix it, so be it. But because of our American solipsism, we're not even aware of the elephant standing in the back yard, just outside the back kitchen door. People of America! Invite that elephant in!

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