The Iranian threat to global peace and security underlined by its intervention and terrorist activity in Iraq, Lebanon, and Palestine, coupled with its accelerated move to acquire a nuclear weapon, have led analysts and pundits to debate probable solutions in facing up to this threat.
The policy suggestions arising from such debate is generally helpful in awakening the world to the reality of Iran’s threat and to a search for a sound policy.
Among such policy formulations, however, there are those that while abhorring the Iranian government and expressing concern about a probable war, tend to in fact strengthen the regime and lay the foundations for an ominous war.
The March report of Chatham House (The Royal Institute of International Affairs) in Britain called ‘Israel and Iran, From War of Words to Words of War,’ is one example.
The report considers an attack on Iran the most undesirable option in confronting the Islamic Republic and says that the most obvious consequence of such an action is widespread instability in the Middle East and greater danger for Israel.
There is no doubt that an attack on Iran either by Israel or the US is an undesirable option and it is not a solution to the threat posed by Tehran.
The report’s conclusion, however, is worth contemplating.
The report presents Iran’s nuclear threat as too distant; proposes that the theocracy in Iran is negotiable; dangles foreign investment as an incentive to Iran to help the Islamic Republic to confront its critical economic situation; and encourages using the resumption of diplomatic dialogue with the US after more than 28 years as a luring incentive to the regime.
The Chatham House report, however, fails in understanding a number of essential realities about the current Iranian regime.