Recently Charlie Rose had a conversation on camera with Richard Holebrooke.

Two important things came out of that conversation.

One, was that there can be no peace in the Middle East that is not directly organized, driven, and followed through upon by the United States government.

Two: was that there can be no peace in the Middle East that does not involve Iran.

Therefore, if any administration is seriously interested in Middle East Peace, then the United States and Iran need to hammer it out. Such an agreement would have far reaching effects over the entire region, even upon the settling of the Israel-Palestinian conflict.

This may be unsettling for those who only get their information from newspapers. Their wing nuts are sure to call out….B.b.b.but Iran supports terrorism.

Perhaps they forget that the US did the same, under the context of containing the soviets. But since many often loosely throw out the word “terrorists”, let us first define exactly what the word means itself? Who defines a terrorist? The winners right? Were the Viet Cong terrorists or were they freedom fighters? No one mentions the difference now. Were the Contras terrorists or were they freedom fighters? No one mentions the difference now. Were the Afghans freedom fighters, or were they terrorists? The soviets and us, each had diametrically opposite opinions.

Anyone who has seen this cannot truthfully say that Iran is the evil empire of Mordor. Even though we are told one thing by our administration, when we look at raw intelligence we see that Iran is quite different from the picture painted by some Republicans pontificating before a session of joint congress.

Most of the harsh talk condemning Iran, if one looks hard enough, is financially traceable back to Big Oil. Still they are smarting from the nationalization of their oil based infrastructure that occurred as the US was being thrown out in 79. Need proof? Compare the votes of those who shake their fists at Iran, with those votes recommended by the Petroleum lobbyists. They are in lock step.

Iran was hurting under our relationship. The population responded by rallying around the best person who had a shot of ridding their country of the despotic ruler. Khomeini succeeded, and the US interests were tossed out.

But if one looks into Iran today, one can find that they have two political parties just like we do, and that they…. have close elections too.

Besides religious fanatics, Iran is full of moderates and liberals as well. It’s citizens are clever, industrious, patriotic, as well as artistic. They tend to think for themselves. And right now, their best bet for security from any of the giants around them, is to build a nuclear weapon. Even while this administration has painted them as dark and evil, they have helped us in the recent past. They receive credit for easing our way into southern Afghanistan. That engagement was too easy and over too quickly. Iranians should also be given credit for Karzai; it was their insistence that the Afghans listened to, not ours, and what could have been a long conflict, was settled quickly. We have also heard rumors that they gave Zarqawi to us in Iraq. We kindly thanked them by naming them in the axis of evil, by sending three carrier groups to their doorstep, and by lambasting them internationally……….

Some of the problem of dialog lies with Iran. But any discussion takes two parties. And the US needs to get off its high horse and start finding common ground with the Iranians. Iran controls Hesbollah; the US influences Israel. Great dividends are possible if todays blocked avenues are reopened and risks are again taken.

What America needs is a strong leader: one who is willing to stand in Iraq at the border of Iran. and say: People of Iran, ….tear down this wall you have built against the United States. But to be believable,….. that leader must not stink of oil……..
Beauty of Iran is often neglected
Hope on the Iranian horizon.