Monday, September 30, 2013

Iran's Smiling Face Earns a Phone Call

Obama and Rouhani Speak by Phone - Peter Baker

U.S. President Barack Obama and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani became the first leaders of their countries to speak since 1979 in a 15-minute phone call. A senior administration official said Obama repeated that he respected Iran's right to develop civilian nuclear energy, but insisted on concessions to prevent development of weapons.

By talking on the phone instead of in person, Rouhani avoided a politically problematic photo of himself with Obama, which could have inflamed hard-liners in Iran wary of his outreach to the U.S. "The economic pain now is sufficient to oblige a telephone call, though not a face-to-face meeting," said Reuel Marc Gerecht, a senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies. "We will see whether the pain is sufficient for the Iranians to shut the heavy-water plant at Arak and reverse Iran's path to a rapid breakout capacity with enriched uranium."
(New York Times)


LHwrites said...

We will see. Certainly, Iran's leaders in allowing the results of the last election, and the statements that have been made since, want it to, at least appear, as if they are interested in rejoining the world community. This would make sense, so is not totally unexpected, but whether it is honest and sustainable, is another story.

Bruce said...

I'm not so impressed by the face change, but yes, time will tell...there's not much of it left though.