Ahmadinejad at nuclear reactor (archives)
Photo: EPA

Words better than missiles

Op-ed: 100 meetings between US, Iranian officials in suits better than 100 missiles on Tel Aviv

Should the US succeed in launching direct talks with the Iranians with the aim of halting the Islamic Republic's nuclear program, Israel will benefit most from such a development.


When people talk, they don't shoot. Despite our tendency to belittle diplomacy, 100 meetings between Iranian and American officials in suits are preferable to 100 missiles on Tel Aviv. Whichever way you look at the Iranian threat, it is better to lift it prudently, at the negotiation table, rather than terminate it with smart bombs and bunker busters.


We should also keep in mind that since his first day in office President Obama has been working through secret channels to initiate a real dialogue with the Iranians. However, this did not prevent him from imposing crippling sanctions on Iran. It is true that Iran has been using these overtures to continue deceiving the West, but now that the sanctions are stifling its economy, Iran's efforts to resume the nuclear talks may be sincere.


Iran is not just the sickening and terrorizing ayatollahs' regime, it is also the Iranian people, who aspire to become a part of the family of nations. The Iranian people are expressing their disgust for the regime in Tehran. I was there, I saw it. I spoke to people in Tehran, Isfahan and even in their holy city of Qom. They purchase US-made products in the black market and secretly watch American movies. They want to be liberated and live like people do in the West. They do not want to remain isolated in the global village.


After the West struck Iran with an iron fist in the form of sanctions, the US and the West will negotiate from a position of power. The West's desire to reach a compromise is driven by strength, not weakness.


Iran's economy is hurting. If its leaders are indeed willing to negotiate with the "Great Satan" America, a close ally of Israel, the "Little Satan," it means they are truly seeking a way out, and the West should jump at this opportunity. And if it is just one big hoax, the US will always be able to send another aircraft carrier to the Gulf.



פרסום ראשון: 10.25.12, 00:30
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