Bending the Third Rail
Because We Should, We Can, We Do
Friday, January 19, 2007
This was in the news yesterday. I say something along the lines of, "can you believe this"! But then I remembered we're talking about Cheney ....
The BBC reports: "Iran offered the US a package of concessions in 2003, but it was rejected, a senior former US official has told the BBC's Newsnight programme.

"Tehran proposed ending support for Lebanese and Palestinian militant groups and helping to stabilise Iraq following the US-led invasion.

"Offers, including making its nuclear programme more transparent, were conditional on the US ending hostility.
"But Vice-President Dick Cheney's office rejected the plan, the official said. . . .

"'We thought it was a very propitious moment to do that,' Lawrence Wilkerson told Newsnight.

"'But as soon as it got to the White House, and as soon as it got to the Vice-President's office, the old mantra of 'We don't talk to evil' . . . reasserted itself.'"
If true, this is a perfect example of paranoia and ideology run amuck. Conservatives will likely say that it wasn't a serious offer or that it was a delaying tactic. But isn't that the essence of diplomacy? Both sides in any negotiation have a vested interest in agreeing and a vested interest in disagreeing. Over time, the balance tips one way or the other. The result? A peaceful settlement.