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Europe Holds The Key To Iran
Articles - June 18, 2008
 

Officials in Europe are beginning to sound more and more like their American counterparts when it comes to Iran. In the wake of President Bush's trip to Europe, they even appear to be moving towards freezing the assets of Iran's largest bank as a way of signalling their resolve over Tehran's nuclear intransigence. In recent months, French President Nicolas Sarkozy has warned publicly that a nuclear Iran poses an "unacceptable risk for regional and world stability," and his government has taken the lead in calling for tougher international sanctions against the Islamic republic. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has made similar noises. "If Iran were to obtain nuclear weapons, it would have disastrous consequences," Merkel told Israel's parliament, the Knesset, during her visit there in March. "We have to prevent this." In practice, however, Europeans are sending a very different signal. Indeed, recent days have seen the Old Continent deal a body blow to efforts to isolate the Islamic Republic.
 

 
Iran Democracy Monitor - No. 74
Bulletins - May 29, 2008
 

Financial pressure, European style; Iran's Baha'i under fire; Securing Syria; Larijani rising

 
Iran Democracy Monitor - No. 73
Bulletins - May 16, 2008
 
To export, or not to export?; Not so quiet on the economic front
 
Iran Democracy Monitor - No. 72
Bulletins - April 23, 2008
 

Iran and al-Qaeda; the ties that bind; A helping hand for Palestinian militants; Rewriting history in Tehran; Iran's take on the news

 
Iran Democracy Monitor - No. 71
Bulletins - April 14, 2008
 

More nuclear progress in Tehran...; ...and greater economic generosity abroad; A new phase in the war on media; Tehran's newest counterterrorism partner

 
Turf War
Articles - March 1, 2008
 

It has been nearly five years since President George W. Bush stood on the deck of the U.S.S Abraham Lincoln and announced the end of major combat operations in Iraq. During that time, the United States has gotten a first-hand education in the complex ideological and religious frictions that simmer below the surface in the Muslim world. And while the Bush administration’s “surge” has now helped the Coalition regain the initiative in the former Ba’athist state, it has become abundantly clear that if Washington and its allies hope to maintain—and, better yet, to expand—their influence in the region as a whole, they still have a great deal to learn about what makes its inhabitants tick.

 
Iran Strategy Brief No. 3: The Case For Economic Warfare
Policy Papers - January 30, 2008
 

What can the United States do about Iran? Today that question, fueled by growing international concern over the Islamic Republic’s persistent nuclear ambitions, has emerged at the forefront of the American strategic debate.

In this calculus, economic measures have received comparatively short shrift. This is because conventional wisdom has it that the United States possesses little leverage that it can bring to bear in order to deter and contain Iran’s nuclear ambitions. In this case, however, the conventional wisdom is wrong; the United States has a considerable number of economic tools at its disposal, despite its lack of trade relations with the Islamic Republic.

 
The National Intelligence Guesstimate
Articles - December 6, 2007
 

In recent weeks, the White House appeared to be gaining serious ground in its efforts to cobble together an international consensus to confront Iran. Today, however, Administration officials are desperately trying to put the pieces of their Iran policy back together. The culprit is the intelligence community's new National Intelligence Estimate (NIE), which asserts that the Iranian regime currently is not in the business of making nuclear weapons.

 
Confronting Iran: U.S. Options
Policy Papers - November 15, 2007
 

Today, the Islamic Republic of Iran looms large on the agenda of policymakers in Washington. Over the past several years, it has become clear that the Islamic Republic is pursuing a massive, multifaceted endeavor to acquire a nuclear capability—and that it is making rapid progress toward this goal, despite pressure from the world community. Yet Iran’s nuclear program is just part of a larger picture. The Islamic Republic’s enduring support for terrorism, its growing and pernicious regional role, and its radical, uncompromising ideology currently also pose serious challenges to the United States, its allies and American interests in the greater Middle East.

So far, policymakers in Washington have failed to muster an adequate response on any of these fronts. As a result, the Islamic Republic has gained precious time to entrench itself in Iraq, expand its support for terrorists and bring added permanence to its nuclear effort. The logical conclusion of the current status quo is a mature Iranian nuclear capability, continued Coalition casualties in Iraq, and emboldened terrorist groups across the region. If it hopes to avoid such an outcome, the United States must harness all the elements of national power into a strategy that focuses on three concrete goals vis-à-vis Iran: counterproliferation, counterterrorism, and counterinsurgency.
 

 
Iran, The Rainmaker
Articles - October 1, 2007
 

Ever since its start six years ago, the United States has been waging the War on Terror chiefly on the Sunni side of the religious divide within Islam. The principal targets have been Al-Qaeda and its affiliates. As recently as September 2006, the White House’s counter-terrorism strategy was still focused overwhelmingly on the Bin Laden network and its offshoots, which were seen as the vanguard of “a transnational movement of extremist organizations, networks, and individuals” threatening the United States. By contrast, the vision articulated by the president in his 2007 State of the Union Address is substantially broader. It encompasses not only Sunni extremists, but their Shi‘a counterparts as well. And, for the first time, it clearly and unambiguously identifies not just “terrorism” but a specific state sponsor — the Islamic Republic of Iran — as a threat to U.S. interests and objectives in the greater Middle East.