Obama has an early awakening to reality.

  Forum Editor 18:46 28 Jan 2009

President Obama may want to extend a had to Iran if it can unclench its fist, but it seems Iran doesn't feel like unclenching right now.

"President Ahmadinejad responded to President Obama's offer by saying (in a speech to the Iranian people) "Those who speak of change must apologise to the Iranian people and try to repair their past crimes"

I can't see America apologising for anything, so it looks like fists are staying clenched for the foreseeable future. Isn't diplomacy great?

  anskyber 19:04 28 Jan 2009

Well yes but as we all know there is the posturing and there is the real diplomacy behind the scenes.

If I was President Ahmadinejad knowing that I needed to keep the radicals onside I would be treading very carefully indeed until I understood what America really meant behind the rhetoric.

I think the approach by Obama is broadly right.

Any thought of winning a conflict using conventional weapons or cold war tactics surely died with the failures of recent experience. A working peace based on some sort of mutual respect must be the way forward and America has more than just a few bridges to build in that area.

  Forum Editor 23:47 28 Jan 2009

The Teran Times says what it's told to say, and Ahmadinejad knows full well that Obama will not engage in any precipitous hand-shaking because it wouldn't go down too well in Israel. He also knows that Obama, like his predecessor, wouldn't be too picky about taking direct action against Iran, given sufficient provocation, so he has decided to see just how the New President reacts to a bit of old-fashioned sword rattling.

The Iranian people - at least sections of them - love it, and Obama definitely doesn't. The truth is that Obama will increase sanctions against Iran unless there's some sign of Ahmadinejad capitulating in terms of engaging with Western concerns about Iran's nuclear ambitions.

  spuds 00:40 29 Jan 2009

And there was me thinking the title had something to do with a newly selected team player, who apparently appeared in girly poses in a men's magazines. According to the cartoons that have appeared, Hillary Clinton is a very relieved person, that Bill's not still in charge :O)

  Wilham 13:25 29 Jan 2009

President Ahmadinejad could ask an apology for USA's threatening tight-fisted obtruction to Iran's neuclear research,- in contrast to America's condonation of Israel's refusal to answer UN questions about its research, and which now appears to have reached neuclear weapon capability.

  Cymro. 14:06 29 Jan 2009

Obama may be a new president that is very different from his predecessor but he is not so different as to apologize to a country like Iran for anything anytime soon.

Even if he wanted to apologise the American people would never put up with such a thing and he would be unelected at the first opportunity.

World leaders do not have a free hand to do as they please and the American people are much too proud to have their president apologise to Iran or any such country.

  Forum Editor 17:16 29 Jan 2009

Apologies can be asked for, but when they are it makes it that much harder for the other person to concede - Obama isn't about to apologise for anything. As far as America is concerned it will prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons at almost any cost, and rightly so: Iran's possession of a nuclear capability would destabilise the entire Middle East.

You'll not see Obama budging an inch on the nuclear question, and if he did it would be perceived as a sign of weakness - as would any form of apology. It isn't going to happen.

  Wilham 22:05 30 Jan 2009

'As far as America is concerned it will prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons at almost any cost, and rightly so:...'

Difficult question for you but I have to ask this...

Would your 'rightly so' words of support apply if America took military action against Iran
without United Nations authorisation?

  Forum Editor 22:32 30 Jan 2009

"Which is why Ahmadinejad asked for it."

And as I said, right at the beginning of the thread "I can't see America apologising for anything, so it looks like fists are staying clenched for the foreseeable future"

That's why Obama could afford to make the stirring statement about clenched fists in his speech, he knew it would make him look like a peace-maker. It's called politics.

  Forum Editor 22:39 30 Jan 2009

Please note that I said "....at almost any cost, and rightly so" Not 'at any cost'.

I would never be able to support a decision to take military action against Iran without a UN resolution.

  Wilham 11:53 31 Jan 2009

Thank you for clearing any doubt about that.

Wily old gentleman Ahmadinejad would agree with Cymro, forum member, and FE in not expecting a positive reply from Obama. Asking for an apology would be the vehicle to draw attention to the disparity between UN's tolerance of Israel and the aggressive treatment of Iran regarding neuclear research.

The 'question' nowadays can do a similar task to the ancient 'parable', and I notice is much used in diplomatic exchanges.

This thread is now locked and can not be replied to.

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