Thursday, November 03, 2005

Iran - Isolation or Engagement?

In this New York Times piece, Afshin Molavi argues that now is not the time to isolate the Iranian reformers within the country by isolating Iran with sanctions. In the piece Molavi states that now is the time for engagement:


Molavi's closing:

Before the revolution, American officials often urged the dictatorial shah to share power with the emerging middle class. The shah chose to ignore that advice, and Americans eventually stopped offering it. Now is the time to dust off such thinking and pursue a policy that targets economic support to our natural allies in Iran's economic center. Only a strong and stable middle class can ensure that Iran's inevitable winds of change do more than knock down a few trees - or produce another populist demagogue.

Although I see some logic in the argument, I also can’t help but feel that its time for Iranians who truly desire democracy and change, to take an active role in bringing it to themselves. When and if I see such action then I would be more receptive to the strategy of engagement.

If Iranians are not truly represented by the current hard-line Islamic government, and they have a soul that is based in reform, then I say its time for them to begin making changes from within. Only Iranians can make the changes that need to occur in Iran…………….