Politics and International Relations (PIR)
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PIR lecturer comments on Iran nuclear negotiations

Diplomacy ought to be given a chance, Iran should be tested, and hawkish voices must be opposed, writes PIR lecturer in The Scotsman.

In the 21 November edition of The Scotsman, Daniel Kenealy argues that 'Diplomacy is the best weapon against Iran'. Reviewing developments over the past weeks and looking forward to the conclusion of negotiations tomorrow the piece argues that a realist foreign policy should seek an interim agreement as a mechanism to test Iranian intentions, and then verify them.

The piece argues that realist prudence have brought the negotiating parties to the current situation and that hawkish voices articulating unreasonable demands (whether emanating from Washington, Jerusalem, or Riyadh) must be challenged and overcome. "The best way to undo the positive steps taken," the piece argues "would be to apply further sanctions, as some in the US Congress advocate ... The notion of offering Iran relief from future sanctions that have not been imposed yet, in exchange for a cessation of all enrichment activity, are less about negotiating than dictating."

The piece concludes: "The politics of the lesser evil and a prudent realism ought to guide negotiators in the coming days. Continuing with diplomatic measures are preferable to bellicosity and threats of military force ... It must be remembered that any interim deal is a test of the Iranian regime. You absolutely cannot trust them. You must test and then verify. The devil, therefore, will be in the detail of any deal that emerges tomorrow."

Read the piece here.