In 2003, still under Khatami’s presidency, Iran approached the West and offered the USA vast concessions regarding both the Palestinian and the nuclear issue. Bush, however, ignored this chance.
Ahmadinejad’s election has brought a – at times rhetorical - regime and policy change, in the course of which Israel faces a serious threat by Iran’s anti Zionist politics.
Ironically, the United Nations Security Council’s will decreases to sanction Iran for its potential nuclear armament for military purposes and Obama signalises an increasing willingness to negotiate with the Iranian regime.
In HSFK-Standpunkt 2/2010 Krieg in Sicht? Das iranische Nuklearprogramm und das Sicherheitsdilemma Israels (War in sight? The Iranian nuclear programme and Israel’s security dilemma), Harald Müller examines why the current policy of appeasement is uncalled for and may instead lead to a continuation of Ahmadinejad’s militant anti-Israel policy. He refers to preconditions whose compliment must be the necessary requirement for any concessions by the West and pleas to maintain the sanctions as long as Iran does not depart from its nuclear weapon programme and as long as the anti-Israelian rhetoric is maintained.
At the same time, Müller shows how approaching moderate members of the Iranian leading elite may make sense and how the civilian population feels about Ahmadinejad’s politics.