SOLANA GOES TO TEHERAN: DIPLOMATIC PROSPECTS
"Mr. Solana proposed two different dates for his visit to Tehran that I am considering...I think he will pay a visit to Tehran soon....
"Solana has given us a message that he wants to travel to Iran to deliver the package and we have agreed to the principle of the visit".
Persian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki quoted on 29 May, by Agence France-Presse in www.afp.com
The timing of the EU's diplomatic dogsbody & foreign minister manque, Javier Solana, could not be better or more interesting: on the one hand, the regime in Teheran must by definition feel that recent events in the region have played into its hands to a degree: a) the tactical and political victory by Hezbollah in the latest round of Lebanese infighting; b) the survival and indeed more than survival of the Hamas government in the Gaza Strip. Notwithstanding Israeli efforts to sabotage and indeed destroy it. On the other hand, the fact that its closest regional ally, Syria has decided to open talks with its (and Persia's) arch enemy Israel, must be worrying to the regime in Persia. Especially since it is quite clear that separating the two powers is one of the Israeli pre-conditions for the success of the talks. In addition, notwithstanding the fact that the high price of oil should be all reason give a marvelous fillip to the Persian economy, the Beirut Daily Star tells us today that due to sanctions imposed by the USA and its allies on the UN Security Council, the population of Persia can expect power cuts this summer. Another headline from Persia notes that six Revolutionary Guards were killed in fighting with Kurdish rebels. A reminder for those ignorant of the fact that only half of the population of the Persian, are in fact 'Persian' language speakers. The rest belonging to other groupings like the Kurds for example (for both headlines, see: www.dailystar.com.lb)
The long and the short of it is, that with things carefully balanced for the Persian regime, with both negative and positive elements, it could very well be that the authorities in Teheran will be open to a 'grand compromise', with the USA and its allies. Of course the USA will not agree to anything at this stage, but, it could very well be the case that the Bush regime, faute de mieux, will agree to accept any plausible agreement that Solana is able to cobble together at this stage on the nuclear issue. As David Albright's Institute for Science and International Security, latest report shows, there has been considerable progress in Teheran's quest for nuclear power (www.dailystar.com.lb). So the issue becomes, contra to those like ex-American Ambassador to the United Nations, John Bolton and his ilk, of not, 'appeasement' or Persian disarmament, and then hopefully 'regime change', in Teheran. Rather as a realistic and feasible proposition, something which any analyst of the region worth his salt will recognize immediately, negotiating some type of modus viviendi with the regime of Mullah's, and, by that means defuse the issue of Persian possession of nuclear weapons in the future. In return for which, by definition the West will indeed need to both forswear any idea of 'regime change', in Persia in the future (at least any which can be said to have been fostered by Western, outside assistance), and, to agree to recognize de facto, if not necessarily de jure, Persia's valid security interests in the region. Which of course, contrary to our neo-conservative ideologues, does not necessarily mean giving carte blanche to the Persians, but, simply an accommodation to regional realities. It is probably the case that we (meaning the West) are not yet ready for this type of grand compromise, but, hopefully in the future, either near or not so far, we will be. One can only hope so. Not that I for one, have any more sympathy for the regime of Mullah's than Ambassador Bolton does. I am one with him in hoping that the current regime in Teheran collapses completely. I am just of the opinion that based upon all the available evidence and logic available, that this hoped for utopia will not in fact occur anytime soon. Tant pis mais c'est la force de la chose. And, diplomacy means if nothing else accommodating oneself, even if only temporarily to inconvenient facts. A lesson which zealots like Ambassador Bolton, Mr. Elliott Abrams, et cetera, et cetera, appear to have failed yet to learn. Hopefully they will do so before it is too late. Based upon all the evidence, there is absolutely nothing to be gained for the West by waiting upon events in this matter.