Last month, US officials were greeting the election of Reformist candidate Hassan Rohani as Iran’s next president as a hopeful sign, while simultaneously patting themselves on the back and taking credit for his election.
But if Rohani was really the candidate the US wants, they have a funny way of showing it, as US diplomats are now reassuring Israelis that the US will treat Rohani with intense hostility, and will up the sanctions and threats against Iran going forward.
The promises appear designed to assuage Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who fears that Rohani’s election has spoiled his assorted war plans and has been railing about the need to threaten Iran more often every chance he gets.
Rohani has already called for direct talks with the US, and while the State Department was quick to issue a statement of its own to virtually the same effect, it isn’t clear if the talks will ever actually happen, with Israel too likely to fly off the handle if the US participates and US hawks eager to treat whoever wins Iran’s election as the next “enemy.”
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