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Diplomacy Directed Toward Iran

In recent days, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has repeated the offer first made to the Iranian government in 2006:

"If Iran suspends its uranium enrichment – which is an international demand, not just an American one – then the United States is prepared to reverse twenty-seven years of policy. And I will meet with my Iranian counterpart any time, anywhere. Thus we would have the possibility to discuss every facet of our countries' relations."

White House spokesman Tony Snow says that diplomacy, rather than military action, is the current U.S. strategy in regard to Iran:

"Diplomacy as a way of putting pressure on the regime in Tehran to do some things that are going to be very good for it and its people, which are going to be good economically; they are going to be good in terms of relations with people in the neighborhood. They offer also reassurance to the Iranian people that this government has a lot of respect, admiration and affection for the people of Iran."

At the same time, the United States disapproves of the Iranian regime's activities in Iraq. President George W. Bush said Iran has been giving "material support for attacks on American troops" in Iraq and that the U.S. "will seek out and destroy the networks providing advanced weaponry and training to our enemies." White House spokesman Tony Snow says that Mr. Bush's remarks are not, as some have said, "provocative":

"When you talk about provocation, the movement toward the development of a nuclear program with the public pronouncements of [Iranian] President [Mahmoud] Ahamdinejad, those are provocative. When you have him traveling the world and talking about killing large masses of people, that's provocative. When you have the presence of Iranians on Iraqi soil killing Americans, that is provocative. What the United States is doing in Iraq is doing force protection. We're protecting our people, which is not only what you'd expect, it's the smart and wise thing to do."

"When it comes to people on Iraqi soil. . . trying to move arms that are going to be used to kill Americans or innocent Iraqis," says Mr. Snow, "it is a matter of military necessity to confront them."

The preceding was an editorial reflecting the views of the United States Government.