After a short break for the UN General Assembly and talks on ISIS, with a few high-profile executions in the mix, talks between Iran and the six world powers are set to resume once again within the next two weeks. And the press is certainly aware of the momentum, with analysts clamoring to determine who’s calling the shots in the talks, who needs to compromise more – and who’s going to, well, “win”.
Take The Atlantic’s David Frum, who this week published an analysis under the eye-catching headline “How Iran Scammed America Out of a Nuclear Deal,” suggesting that after “facing disaster” only a year ago, Iran’s leaders were on the verge of “scoring a stunning diplomatic triumph” over the US – not because the West had less leverage, but because Iran had managed to turn the tables through greater clarity of purpose and a stronger will to win.
Over at The Washington Post, Jennifer Rubin took a similar stance, writing that “‘Desperate’ describes the West’s Iran negotiations” more than any other adjective as Western negotiators grow ever-closer to Iran’s position and ever more willing to accept a “flawed” deal.
At The New York Times, David Sanger suggested back in September that Zarif would not be able to go home with a deal that goes against the policies of Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Does this mean Iran could walk away without a deal if the West insists on nuclear restrictions? According to an analysis by Alizera Nader on The National Interest, it can’t afford to, and will eventually have to compromise on the number of centrifuges and the scale of the nuclear program.
Alongside those warning of the perils of too much leniency, western voices have been preaching all the time for western compromise. The Telegraph’s Jack Straw, for example, said that in light of the “old enmities being put aside in the Middle East,” Iran was now “fundamental to securing stability” in the region. Apparently, sponsoring terrorism, jailing journalists, restricting women and censoring online content are no barriers to stability – or to a journalist making a point.