Iran rejects nuke talks with U.S.

posted at 10:36 am on June 27, 2006 by Allahpundit

Not with Europe, mind you. Just with us.

Shrewd move. Rejecting the offer in toto would push the Europeans towards our position on regime change, but objecting on the narrow grounds of U.S. participation forces them away. And of course it exploits anti-American sentiment in Europe and the Middle East especially, where Ahmadinejad is riding a wave of popularity for his belligerence towards the U.S. and Israel.

It could also be a ploy to extract more concessions from the U.S., but what’s left to concede? Uranium enrichment is the sticking point and there’s no way we’ll agree to that.

Is there?

Anyway, the left is constantly telling us to “engage” with rogue regimes like Iran and North Korea, as though their belligerence were the geopolitical equivalent of a child throwing a tantrum to get attention. They accuse us of seeing Hitler in every tinpot dictatorship, but often it seems like all the see is a particularly knotty case study from Dr. Spock. Buy ’em an ice cream and give them some daddy time, the theory goes, and they’ll behave better. We did that here. Now what? Buy them a balloon by giving up our no-enrichment policy?

Khamenei’s already served notice that Iran won’t give up enrichment, so Europe can go one of two ways now: indulge the spoiled child by allowing the U.S. to drop out or show some “tough love” by making U.S. involvement a condition of its own participation. It’s too soon to tell which it’ll be — but I know how I’m betting.

Update: Iran’s minister of science says Islam forbids the construction of WMD. See the update in my “served notice” link to learn what another Iranian minister thinks about that.

Update: On second thought, just how popular is Ahmadinejad?

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We should respond with an offer to have Israel replace us in any negotiations.

Pablo on June 27, 2006 at 10:52 AM

We should decapitate the Iranian leadership, if destroying the laboratories & other nuclear sites cannot be done.
The EU will do nothing to stop Iran on this issue, that much is clear. And they will howl with outrage if we take care of the problem, but in private the little weasals will be thanking us for doing what they could not bring themselves to do. Just your usual European hypocrisy.

Abigail Adams on June 27, 2006 at 11:39 AM

Our counter offer should be sent on an ICBM to Qum

Defector01 on June 27, 2006 at 12:37 PM

For what it is worth, I have always suspected and heard that Ahmadinejad and the Islamic regime is much less popular with the Iranian population than most Americans seem to think it is.

That doesn’t mean that the population wouldn’t support him if we attacked or bombed Iran. And I suspect national pride makes many of them support Iran’s nuculear ambitions. But none-the-less, Ahmaninejad and the Mullahs are very unpopular with the Iranian people.

EFG on June 27, 2006 at 2:33 PM

Not to quible, but I am not sure that the article Allahpundit has linked to really says that Iran has rejected talks with the U.S.

“Negotiating with America does not have any benefit for us and we do not need such negotiations,” Khamenei was quoted as saying by state television.

I agree, normal people would say that sounds like a rejection. But diplomatic-speak is filled with all sorts of nuances and double meanings and innuendos.

I myself dont need to comment on HotAir. But that doesn’t mean that I reject it. My point is that there is still some wiggle room in this statement. If the U.S. and Europe hang tough, Iran might then agree to talk with the U.S. and won’t have to admit it caved to U.S. pressure.

EFG on June 27, 2006 at 2:39 PM

I’d disagree that the mullahs’ refusal to speak with the US, but not the Euro-weenies, is such a good move. Having been played like a grand piano for the naive fools that they are, the Euro-weenies are now stripped of their last fig-leaf: there’s no longer any excuse of, “But if only the US would agree to participate, we could find a resolution by talking.”

What they got instead was the belligerently intransigent “negotiation partner” who just won’t take “yes” for an answer, even to a capitulation-style deal that ol’ Jimmah Cahtah himself would’ve been proud to have served up.

There comes a point when even the most Pollyanna-ish among the West must realize that the other guy is “negotiating” only because he’s not quite done with his preparations to clobber you: a good example of this kind of duplicity was the fact that the Japanese ambassadors in Washington were hand-delivering a “diplomatic response” to our secretary of state even as the bombs were falling on Pearl Harbor.

When the war begins with the Iranian mullocracy, I’ll be among the first to regard the peace-at-any-price talkniks with the disgust they so richly deserve; it’s too bad, however, that I won’t get any real satisfaction from saying, “I told you so.”

Spurius Ligustinus on June 27, 2006 at 2:44 PM

EFG: you’re right. Taking any statements at face value is foolish. The mullahs and Ahmadinejad are racking up points with the extremist factions and will continue to play the waiting game re Iraq. Beating their chests cost them nothing, so why not.

honora on June 27, 2006 at 4:32 PM

Yeah, fair point, EFG. It’s not an outright rejection but I think his motives are the same as described in my post. He’s trying to look defiant while driving a wedge between us and the Europeans.

Allahpundit on June 27, 2006 at 4:35 PM

Allah, I think your analysis that this is an attempt to drive a wedge between us is spot on. They definitely want to split any sort of aliance between us and Europe. Phrasing it the way they did just gives them the wiggle room and face saving they will need if the European and U.S. hang tough.

I wouldn’t ever try to pull an actus on this site.

EFG on June 27, 2006 at 9:57 PM