In Defense of Talk

The former US Ambassador to Afghanistan and Iraq, Ryan Crocker, describes terms for successful negotiations with Iran, namely:

  • Progress requires direct talks
  • Substance of the talks must be “closely held”
  • US should introduce “other issues beyond the nuclear file”
  • Be clear that the US doesn’t seek regime change

via Talk to Iran, It Works,

His recommendations seem to be working–at least for now–with Sec State Kerry joining in the fun.


2 thoughts on “In Defense of Talk”

  1. Knowing now that the negotiations failed, it is interesting to look at what points were considered most essential. I don’t know exactly what all was tentatively established at the meetings before they fell apart today, but I thought that the US did a good job on making these points. I was excited that the talks were even happening, but I knew that it would be hard for them to be successful because of all the players involved. It is easy to pass blame quickly on to France for being the block between anything being passed because the French representative insisted that the discussions were not comprehensive enough, but I am sure there were many more factors to that. It is hard to create open discussions with a country with very different views who feels as if their sovereignty is being infringed upon in the first place, so I don’t know if there was any actual hope for the peace talks. But good on Kerry for all he did accomplish. Hopefully the talks will be resumed one day soon!

  2. This article is particularly relevant to me as I am learning to be a better diplomat. I think that often negotiations are done from the short-term perspective. I found it interesting that one of the main points was to negotiate on items other than major issues such as nuclear arms. It builds trust and it allows for the negative view of the United States to be softened. It also made me wonder how different US and Iran relations would have been had Bush not have made that speech. We could have been a very different situation. It goes to show that the world is always watching to hear what we have to say and so we need to be conscientious of that fact.

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