What to do about U.S. Sanctions and Israeli Threats: Iran's Muted Nuclear Debate
Middle East Brief 61, April 2012
The leaders and people of Iran have been watching with keen interest the loud debate in the United States and Israel regarding the relative efficacy of different means for preventing Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons. However, inside Iran the economic and verbal onslaught has created a public conversation that is quite different. In this Brief, Prof. Farideh Farhi argues that since it is not permissible to advocate temporarily suspending Iran’s enrichment program, the public debate in Iran centers on two other areas of contention: The credibility of an attack on Iran and the possibilities of meaningful negotiations with the United States. She concludes by analyzing the implications of Iran’s internal debate for the future of diplomatic efforts to resolve the conflict with Iran over the nuclear issue.