Reshaping our Iran Policy

U.S. policy must ensure the price of Iranian aggression becomes unaffordable.

Issue: Jan-Feb 2007

In recent issues of The National Interest, there has been an ongoing discussion as to whether Iran can be deterred as the Soviet Union was during the Cold War. I have serious doubts. The ideology that governs Iran is as noxious as the radicalism that fuels Al-Qaeda. Moreover, the resurgence of the fanatical spirit of the Iranian Revolution, and President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's commitment to exporting the revolution to Lebanon, the greater Middle East and the entire Muslim world, calls into question whether we can expect a nuclear Iran to be a rational state actor disciplined by deterrent doctrines such as "mutually assured destruction." Maurice R. Greenberg, who met with Ahmadinejad in New York this past September, summed it up: "We can't deal with him. You can't deal with this guy.

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