Thursday, March 15, 2007
Jules Crittenden excerpts and analyzes a Stratfor report on the on-going verbal and non-verbal negotiations between the United States and Iran. I had wished to do the same, but am too darn busy today. Tidbit:
The Iranians are also under pressure. They have miscalculated on what Bush would do: They expected military drawdown, and instead they got the surge. This has conjured up memories of the miscalculation on what the 1979 hostage crisis would bring: The revolutionaries had bet on a U.S. capitulation, but in the long run they got an Iraqi invasion and Ronald Reagan.
Expediency Council Chairman Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani already has warned the Iranians not to underestimate the United States, saying it is a “wounded tiger” and therefore much more dangerous than otherwise. In addition, the Iranians know some important things.
… Uncontrolled chaos next door could spill over into Iran in numerous ways — separatist sentiments among the Kurds, the potential return of a Sunni government if the Shia are too fractured to govern, and so forth. A certain level of security in Iraq is fundamental to Iran’s national interests.
… there are concerns that Iraq’s Shia are so fractious that they might not be serviceable as a coherent vehicle for Iranian power.
… Finally, Iran’s ability to threaten terror strikes against U.S. interests depends to a great extent on Hezbollah … far more interested in the power and wealth to be found in Lebanon than in some global — and potentially catastrophic — war against the United States. The Iranian leadership has seen al Qaeda’s leaders being hunted and hiding in Pakistan, and they have little stomach for that. In short, Iranian leaders might not have all the options they would like to pretend they have …
Back a few conversations.
Can one of you guys discussing the Akbar deal explain to someone not familiar with the ME culture what the deal is about having a "U" or not having a "U" in that other word?
It seems one of you guys is an expert and the other is well informed with a good many proofs. Then there's a third party arbiter telling one guy that the other guy is the expert.
What is going on so I'll know when the bad stuff starts here in America.
That conversation was wound up with the answer being reiterated. I'll repeat it here for convenience.
"Depends on the exactness of the pronunciation. The "u" at the end is not a letter, but an alteration to the previous letter based on its function in the sentence. In colloquial Arabic those little additions get left off all the time because they're kind of a bitch to keep track of and it slows down speech."