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White House works to ease Iran proposal in Congress

jujuman13

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White House works to ease Iran proposal in Congress - latimes.com

Quote(Reporting from Washington —
The Obama administration, which labored for months to impose tough new United Nations sanctions against Iran, now is pushing in the opposite direction against Congress as it crafts U.S. sanctions that the White House fears may go too far.

Administration officials have begun negotiations with congressional leaders, who are working on versions of House and Senate bills that would punish companies that sell refined petroleum products to Iran or help the country's oil industry.

Unlike the U.N. measures, congressional action would pertain only to U.S. policies and agencies and would not be binding on other countries. Other countries and groups of nations also are considering adopting measures to augment the U.N. action.)

Good God, after all that the US has done in persuading other Countries to agree with the exceptionally weak sanctions that they have been able to get a majority agreement for in the UN,
Obama is now trying to weaken those sanctions still further.
JUST WHAT IS GOING ON?
If Obama was fearful of damaging relations with other countries that have Company's that deal with Iran, does he not realize that country's such as EU nations as well as Russia and China knew exactly what the ramifications of signing up and agreeing to the latest round of sanctions would be for them and their own Company's.
 

Deputy Fife

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Obama is certainly concerned about foreign relations, but he does not realize that conveying weakness does not earn you any respect on the world stage.

The carrot is offered as a means of promoting diplomacy, but the carrot is useless without the stick to serve as a severe consequence if nations are unwilling to cooperate.

Can it be argued that the US is a bully? That the US has a cultural and economic empire? Yes, but since that perception is unlikely to change in the Europeans' minds, I say we embrace our role as world leaders.

The US should worry about garnering the respect, rather than the friendship of foreign nations. If fear and envy factors into that respect, so be it.

When we change this whole popularity contest outlook on foreign policy to one that zealously asserts American exceptionalism, we will gain respect and avoid false sentiments of "friendship" among nations.

Iran needs to know that we're serious, and Obama needs to communicate that.
 

jujuman13

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Do you in all honesty think Obama is capable of that?
 
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Deputy Fife said:
Obama is certainly concerned about foreign relations, but he does not realize that conveying weakness does not earn you any respect on the world stage.

You have to put this in the context of recent events. I don't know how closely you follow Iranian politics, but the flotilla massacre and detainments were a huge propaganda victory for the hardliners in Iran who exploited them in their rhetoric to gain support. Iran has a lot of influence in the region, and has gained a lot of that due to US intervention in the region in the past decade, and so this poses a very big problem for the US government. While they do want to exert their influence on Iran in terms of its nuclear program, they don't want to push Iran so far to the right that the really conservative leaders gain the majority, as this would really increase the tensions in the region and increase the chances of destabilization enormously, which is exactly what the US doesn't want.

It's a very sensitive situation, and if the US administration plays too strong of a hand they could see it slip through their fingers. The results could be disastrous.
 
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danarhea

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You have to put this in the context of recent events. I don't know how closely you follow Iranian politics, but the flotilla massacre and detainments were a huge propaganda victory for the hardliners in Iran who exploited them in their rhetoric to gain support. Iran has a lot of influence in the region, and has gained a lot of that due to US intervention in the region in the past decade, and so this poses a very big problem for the US government. While they do want to exert their influence on Iran in terms of its nuclear program, they don't want to push Iran so far to the right that the really conservative leaders gain the majority, as this would really increase the tensions in the region and increase the chances of destabilization enormously, which is exactly what the US doesn't want.

It's a very sensitive situation, and if the US administration plays too strong of a hand they could see it slip through their fingers. The results could be disastrous.

Actually, the US let the situation slip through their fingers in 1953, when they sent in the CIA to overturn a democratic election in Iran, and then installed the Shah.
 

NolaMan

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You have to put this in the context of recent events. I don't know how closely you follow Iranian politics, but the flotilla massacre and detainments were a huge propaganda victory for the hardliners in Iran who exploited them in their rhetoric to gain support. Iran has a lot of influence in the region, and has gained a lot of that due to US intervention in the region in the past decade, and so this poses a very big problem for the US government. While they do want to exert their influence on Iran in terms of its nuclear program, they don't want to push Iran so far to the right that the really conservative leaders gain the majority, as this would really increase the tensions in the region and increase the chances of destabilization enormously, which is exactly what the US doesn't want. It's a very sensitive situation, and if the US administration plays too strong of a hand they could see it slip through their fingers. The results could be disastrous.

I will grant you that Iran has been spinning this event in their favor, I would argue that it is more so becaue of their worsening domestic situation that they have to make an even bigger deal about events like this. Ultimately, I do not think additional sanctions would push the youth, and those we saw revolting in the streets a few months ago, suddenly into the arms of the far right within Iran. If anything, I would argue that backing off of sanctions would weaken the reformers resolve, and firm up the power base of the present regime, which is not something I would shoot for.

I think that your method is basically a maintence of the status quo, which already destabilizes the region, and does nothing to oust the current regime in favor of a more moderate replacement.

Now to be clear, I am not calling for war, but reality is, this round of sanctions is mostly meaningless to begin with, and it just makes us look bad, and give Iran another PR victory when we back down from them, for really no gain.
 
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NolaMan

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Actually, the US let the situation slip through their fingers in 1953, when they sent in the CIA to overturn a democratic election in Iran, and then installed the Shah.

Looking at it through the context of the Cold War and stability of the world's oil supply, that was not necessarily a bad move.
 
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Nolaman said:
Ultimately, I do not think additional sanctions would push the youth, and those we saw revolting in the streets a few months ago, suddenly into the arms of the far right within Iran.

There has already been a huge shift towards the hardliners because of these recent events so I'm not really sure what this means.

If anything, I would argue that backing off of sanctions would weaken the reformers resolve, and firm up the power base of the present regime, which is not something I would shoot for.

I very highly doubt there are many people in Iran that support sanctions.

I think that your method is basically a maintence of the status quo, which already destabilizes the region, and does nothing to oust the current regime in favor of a more moderate replacement.

What is "my method"???

Now to be clear, I am not calling for war, but reality is, this round of sanctions is mostly meaningless to begin with, and it just makes us look bad, and give Iran another PR victory when we back down from them, for really no gain.

You're very seriously underestimating the influence that the hardliners have and the volatility of the situation. A "hardline" approach against Iran will shift national opinion sharply to the right. There is absolutely no doubt about that.
 
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NolaMan

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There has already been a huge shift towards the hardliners because of these recent events so I'm not really sure what this means.

I don't think a "rally around the flag" moment constituents a real change however.

I very highly doubt there are many people in Iran that support sanctions.

I agree, my point is that there are those in the opposition party (for lack of a better term) that would probably see them as a way to eliminate the hardliners and change their overall policies to get them lifted.

What is "my method"???

Perhaps this was a poor choice of words. What I meant was what you were advocating, which is the same as the President I suppose.

You're very seriously underestimating the influence that the hardliners have and the volatility of the situation. A "hardline" approach against Iran will shift national opinion sharply to the right. There is absolutely no doubt about that.

I don't doubt they have a lot of influence, I am just saying the way to change that is arguably not to look even more weak and cave in terms in sanctions.
 

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Actually, the US let the situation slip through their fingers in 1953, when they sent in the CIA to overturn a democratic election in Iran, and then installed the Shah.

It's a good thing we didn't install the current government. The people are no more satisfied with this boss than the last boss. I guess this time, the Iranian government has the world press on their side.
 
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I don't think a "rally around the flag" moment constituents a real change however.

What does this mean?

I agree, my point is that there are those in the opposition party (for lack of a better term) that would probably see them as a way to eliminate the hardliners and change their overall policies to get them lifted.

You can find people that believe anything. This doesn't mean anything.

Perhaps this was a poor choice of words. What I meant was what you were advocating, which is the same as the President I suppose.

I'm a communist. I don't advocate what the President advocates. I'm merely putting their actions into context and attempting to dispel the "Obama's a weakling" crap that conservatives are trying to spew.

I don't doubt they have a lot of influence, I am just saying the way to change that is arguably not to look even more weak and cave in terms in sanctions.

This has nothing to do with "looking weak". And besides, danarhea is absolutely correct; we all saw what happened the last time the US tried to "play a strong hand" in Iran.
 

NolaMan

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What does this mean?

Iranian people will be outraged about the Israeli actions for awhile, but then it is back to the reality that their domestic situation is worsening, due largely to their current leadership.

You can find people that believe anything. This doesn't mean anything.

Then that point is up for debate I suppose.

I'm a communist. I don't advocate what the President advocates. I'm merely putting their actions into context and attempting to dispel the "Obama's a weakling" crap that conservatives are trying to spew.

Well, it does come across as weak. Why not just let it go, since most sanctions are nothing more than window dressing anyway.

This has nothing to do with "looking weak". And besides, danarhea is absolutely correct; we all saw what happened the last time the US tried to "play a strong hand" in Iran.

What happened? We got a friendly government for 25 years that helped serve as a buffer against communism and keep a relatively stable world oil market.

Not to mention, backing off will just serve as another PR coup for the Iranian leadership to point to.
 
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pragmatic

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Obama is certainly concerned about foreign relations, but he does not realize that conveying weakness does not earn you any respect on the world stage.

The carrot is offered as a means of promoting diplomacy, but the carrot is useless without the stick to serve as a severe consequence if nations are unwilling to cooperate.

Can it be argued that the US is a bully? That the US has a cultural and economic empire? Yes, but since that perception is unlikely to change in the Europeans' minds, I say we embrace our role as world leaders.

The US should worry about garnering the respect, rather than the friendship of foreign nations. If fear and envy factors into that respect, so be it.

When we change this whole popularity contest outlook on foreign policy to one that zealously asserts American exceptionalism, we will gain respect and avoid false sentiments of "friendship" among nations.

Iran needs to know that we're serious, and Obama needs to communicate that.

Nice summary.

(And while we dawdle, those centrifuges just keep on spinning, refining the uranium. Month after month. Seven days a week. 24 hours a day. Like a clock....)





.
 

danarhea

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It's a good thing we didn't install the current government. The people are no more satisfied with this boss than the last boss. I guess this time, the Iranian government has the world press on their side.

But the government they already had was democratically elected. Problem is, we did not like the new president of Iran nationalizing British Petroleum. 57 years later, though, I think I understand why they nationalized it. LOL.
 

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But the government they already had was democratically elected. Problem is, we did not like the new president of Iran nationalizing British Petroleum. 57 years later, though, I think I understand why they nationalized it. LOL.

During the Cold War, and in that political environment (which you must judge this decision based on), it was not a bad move to put the Shah into power.
 

danarhea

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During the Cold War, and in that political environment (which you must judge this decision based on), it was not a bad move to put the Shah into power.

I strongly disagree. If we had not made that move, Iran would not have had their revolution against the Shah, and the mullahs would not control that country. THIS is the perfect example of what Ron Paul refers to as "blowback" in our foreign policy.
 

NolaMan

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I strongly disagree. If we had not made that move, Iran would not have had their revolution against the Shah, and the mullahs would not control that country. THIS is the perfect example of what Ron Paul refers to as "blowback" in our foreign policy.

You cannot ignore the pressing needs of today by focusing on the unknown problems of tomorrow. It is just as easy to argue that if the USSR dominated Iranian politics it still would have created an Islamic revolution and resulted in roughly the same situation, just after 25 years of grief instead.

Blowback or not, supporting the Shah, at the time, was a correct move.
 

jujuman13

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You cannot ignore the pressing needs of today by focusing on the unknown problems of tomorrow. It is just as easy to argue that if the USSR dominated Iranian politics it still would have created an Islamic revolution and resulted in roughly the same situation, just after 25 years of grief instead.

Blowback or not, supporting the Shah, at the time, was a correct move.

It was the US peerception that supporting the Shah at that time was the correct thing to do!
 

NolaMan

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It was the US peerception that supporting the Shah at that time was the correct thing to do!

And it was the correct thing to do... at the time.
 

deltabtry

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It's a good thing we didn't install the current government. The people are no more satisfied with this boss than the last boss. I guess this time, the Iranian government has the world press on their side.
How does the saying go, "old boss, new boss, same boss". I think we should give Iran enough rope to eventually hang themselves with it, by staying out of their affairs. I could be wrong on this but, the hardliners resolve is much stronger than those who impose sanctions on Iran. Iran has the allies it wishes to have and it doesn't really include the U.S. or numerous European countries. Funny thing about hard liners the tougher you are on them the stronger the will they get. The only ones to suffer under these sanctions as usual will be the common people.
 
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