US Defense Secretary: Iran Inching Toward Position Where They Could Talk With US

Sees 'subtle movements' by Iran to facilitate future talks

While Iranian officials have seemingly been very consistent in saying they don’t believe they’re going to have talks with the United States, and that their precondition is a deal that allows them to sell their oil internationally, Defense Secretary Mark Esper suggests he thinks talks may still happen at some point.

Speaking Friday at a think tank in London, Esper said he is seeing recent Iranian comments and moves as part of a long plan to slowly inch toward a position in which talks with the United States could become possible, saying he believe this is a “good thing.”

Iranian officials aren’t saying anything different, however, and are maintaining their position that they expect very specific things to come out of US talks, either returning the US to the existing P5+1, or concessions that would recreate the incentives therein.

Trump said anything is possible, and that he believes he could solve the problems with Iran in 24 hours if there were talks. While Trump says he continues to seek talks, it is likely that top US officials like Mike Pompeo and John Bolton would seriously oppose any talks likely to produce a deal.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of