Following Iranian President Hassan Rouhani's statement that he is open to talks with the United States on Iran's nuclear program, the American press is discussing a broad regional diplomatic settlement to the war drive Washington and its allies unleashed against Syria, Iran's main Arab ally.
Welcoming a "quick turn of fortunes, as diplomatic options open up with Syria and Iran," the New York Times cited a "senior American diplomat" who called the shift "head-spinning."
US officials are preparing a possible meeting between Rouhani and President Barack Obama at the UN General Assembly next week, after Rouhani vowed Iran would never seek to build nuclear weapons. They are also monitoring the initial steps in Syria's program to destroy its chemical weapons.
On Thursday, Syrian officials submitted a list of their chemical weapons to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons in The Hague, beginning a $1 billion effort to turn over and destroy Syrian chemical weapons stocks. They are also preparing to revive negotiations between Syria, Syrian opposition forces and the Western powers to be held in Geneva.
The vast stakes involved in US negotiations with Iran and Syria make very clear that the US war drive against Syria concerned far more than the unsubstantiated claim peddled by Washington that Syria had used poison gas in an attack on Ghouta on August 21. This was a pretext to drag the American and European people into an imperialist war against not only Syria, but ultimately also against Iran and possibly Russia, without disclosing the war's far-reaching objectives.