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Iran refuses to relent in developing nuclear technology, despite U.N. sanctions. Rumors persist that Israel is drawing up plans for military strikes. Neither the emboldened Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad nor the embattled President Bush has relented in his war of words. How did we get here? Iran expert Ali Ansari sets the current crisis in the context of a long history of mutual antagonism. From the overthrow of Mosaddeq in 1953 to the hostage crisis in 1979 and, more recently, the Gulf War and the War in Iraq, both Iranian and American politicians have forged conflicting narratives about an “evil empire” lying half a world away-resulting in a mutual mistrust that may ultimately lead to war.
Posted January 8, 2007
This slightly convoluted book provides tremendous background to help advanced readers understand the complex motives and machinations that shape U.S.-Iranian relations. Unfortunately, professor Ali Ansari has a definite point of view that affects his presentation about Iran¿s stated nuclear threats and terrorist financing, even as he chides the 'trigger-happy Americans' in Iraq. He may be right that the U.S. missed several opportunities to reduce tensions with Iran, but he admits that Iran¿s overtures were oblique and unpopular. His baroque interpretations of Iran¿s motives and the relationships among its factions is dizzying, and open to question - ultimately adding to Iran¿s mystery. Despite its biases, we consider this important for those seeking a comprehensive overview of Iran and its complex U.S. relations. The book goes well beyond any discussion available in the mass media.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.