- By Daniel W. Drezner
Daniel W. Drezner is professor of international politics at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University and a senior editor at The National Interest. Prior to Fletcher, he taught at the University of Chicago and the University of Colorado at Boulder. Drezner has received fellowships from the German Marshall Fund of the United States, the Council on Foreign Relations, and Harvard University. He has previously held positions with Civic Education Project, the RAND Corporation, and the Treasury Department.
So, how should you interpret the first round of P5 +1 negotiations with Iran that took place yesterday?
The hard-working staff here at drezner.foreignpolicy.com would never want its readers to view material outside their ideological comfort zone — that would be crazy talk. Therefore, please go down this list of different ideological approaches to Iran and read only the one that fits you.
Liberal internationalism: An excellent first round of talks. At a minimum, the Iranian pledge to permit IAEA inspectors into its Qom facility, and the agreement to have fuel encriched outside of Iran, help to lessen fears of a breakout capability. This shows how a multilateral approach, linked to the threat of sanctions, can successfully bring Iran into a cooperative relationship with the West.
Neoconservatism: These talks were a feckless and futile exercise. Iran agreed "in principle" — which means that it will likely not honor its pledges. This also covers part of the uranium that we know about, and only the facilities that we know about. Anyone who thinks that this lying, odious, anti-Semitic regime is showing all of its cards on the nuclear question is deluding themselves. The only thing these talks will accomplish is sapping the will of Americans to use any means necessary to overthrow the regime.
Realism: Iran’s concessions reinforce the point that this regime a perfectly rational actor that is worthy of even deeper engagement. We still have no evidence that Iran is trying to develop nuclear weapons, so we should not go looking for red herrings that do not exist. A deal can be made with this government once we are able to ignore how its rulers treats its own citizenry. Any failure from here on in is entirely the fault of Israel and the Israel Lobby in the United States.
So, did I miss anything?