The Meaning of Rouhani

The Meaning of Rouhani

The landslide victory of Hassan Rouhani, a moderate and pro-reform cleric, in Iran’s recent presidential election came as a surprise to many observers within and outside of Iran. Although Rouhani’s win was a major gain for the moderate and reformist political groups...
Dining with Mahmoud

Dining with Mahmoud

Sometimes a person you’ve been trained to hate comes across as reasonable. That happened to me when I met Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Every year, during the United Nations General Assembly, Iran’s mission to the United Nations offers a Persian dinner (no alcohol)...
Can Egypt Chart Its Own Course?

Can Egypt Chart Its Own Course?

Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi’s bold initiatives on the world stage indicate that the Muslim Brotherhood leader is attempting to pursue a more independent approach to international affairs. By visiting China and Iran before the United States, forcing several...

Cracks in the Argument That Iran Is Realist and Rational?

Ostensibly, Israel fears annihilation should Iran develop nuclear weapons. Israeli officials and commentators have often invoked Iran President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s alleged statement in 2005 that Israel should be wiped off the face of the Earth. (Nor do they...

WikiLeaks XV: Does Tehran Really Press-Gang Ninjas Into Its Services?

We’re honored to have Michael Busch dissecting the latest WikiLeaks document dump for Focal Points. This is the fifteenth in the series. Amidst some pretty stiff competition, the award for most provocative cable headline released thus far by WikiLeaks goes to...

The Democrats & Iran

As the dust begins to settle from the mid-term elections, popular thinking is that, over the next two years, the Democrats will force the Bush administration to edge away from the unilateral militarism that has entrapped the nation in two open-ended wars. Don’t...