Last week, Mr. Obama invited a group of journalists into the White House to talk about Iran. According to the Washington Post's David Ignatius, Obama's agenda was to signal Iran that the United States might "accept a deal that allows Iran to maintain its civilian nuclear program, so long as Iran provides 'confidence-building measures' to verify that it is not building a bomb." He said that his Administration is prepared to lay out "a clear set of steps that we would consider sufficient to show that they are not pursuing nuclear weapons." Together with the tightening of sanctions against Iran and the CIA Director Leon Panetta's June 27 conclusion that sanctions will "probably not" dent Iran's drive for a "nuclear option" and also former CIA Director Michael Hayden's recent statement on CNN that a strike on Iran now "seems inexorable," the Administration seems to be sending mixed signals to Iran . Some analysts have concluded that other than his unsuccessful attempts to engage with Iran, Obama has come to very similar positions with Bush on Iran. Now, some believe that calls for deals and dialogue on both sides are only to brush of the guilt of being complacent and not doing enough to prevent another tragedy in the Middle East. Neo-cons and zionists whose thirst for war and destruction of the Islamic nation has not been quenched by wars in Lebanaon, Gaza, Iraq and Afghanistan, now insist that the storm clouds of war seem to be circling in the Middle East once again.
In synchrony with other pro-war voices , the Washington Times, yesterday attempted to legitimize an attack:” An Israeli strike may or may not be in the cards, with the acquiescence, if only privately, of some Arab states and others, but the question nevertheless arises: Would an Israeli strike on Iran necessarily be unlawful? “
There is much hope in Iran that Obama will not ultimately play into the hands of the extremists who are similar to certain elements within Iran, in their thinking that any attack on Iran will lead to apocalyptical conditions thereby ushering the rise of the “Hidden Imam” for the Muslims or the “Messiah” for the Jews and the Christians alike. These extremists have gone to the verge of predicting when the Imam will appear and who his true allies would be. Such prophecies had an important role in the initial election of Mr. Ahmadinejad in 2005 and still continues to be a source of religious arousal for his followers, amidst the very difficult times he is facing now in Iran.
I believe it is also very important to mention that Reformists and the Green Movement do not approve of the escalating tensions between Iran and the West . Sanctions and economic pressures are useless tactics that ultimately destabilize the economy, weaken the private sector and put more pressure on the masses thereby impeding democratic processes in Iran. The notion of striking or attacking Iran is outrageous considering the chain reaction it would initiate not only in the Middle East but throughout the world. Dialogue and alleviation of tensions are the only way ahead. Taken in that light, while his other policies were reminiscent of the Bush era, this recent step by Obama may be cautiously envisaged as a step in the correct direction.