PRESIDENT BUSH’S officials confirmed yesterday that Iran had agreed to hold talks with the US on Iraq.
The Iranian communique said: ‘Following consultations between Iranian and Iraqi officials, Tehran has agreed to hold negotiations with Washington to relieve the pains and suffering of the Iraqi people, support and strengthen the government of Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki and stabilise security and peace in that country.’
It was the United States that was seeking these talks.
Just a few weeks ago the Iranian and US delegations barely said good-day to each other at the Sharm El-Sheikh conference on Iraq, even though their Egyptian host placed Iran’s chief negotiator opposite US Secretary of State Rice, at the dinner table, so that they could talk.
The negotiator Larijani however quickly left his place and after the conference the Iranian president announced that there would be no face to face talks with the United States. Now after an internal struggle within the Iranian clerical establishment it is all change and a meeting with the ‘Great Satan’ is on.
The Bush administration, for its part, has been referring to the Iranian government as the leader of the ‘Axis of Evil’ for years. At the same time, its fleets have been off the Iranian coast and its mercenary Israel has been training for bombing raids on Iranian nuclear facilities.
However, it has been doing the pursuing as far as talks with Iran are concerned.
The reason is obvious. It will not be able to withdraw its armies from Iraq, and leave behind at least one major US base in Kurdistan, without the Iranian government using its influence in southern Iraq to halt the growing insurgency there. This means Iran will have to tame the movement around the Mahdi Army.
The Iranian bourgeoisie may well be willing to play ball with the US ruling class, provided its interests as a regional power are respected. This means its right to use nuclear power for peaceful means.
A deal with the Iranian bourgeoisie and Syria is now being touted by the US Democrats as the key to pacifying the Middle East, stabilising Iraq and creating the conditions where Syria restrains Hezbollah, and makes a peace treaty with Israel after recovering the bulk of the Golan Heights, and forces the Palestinians to accept a Bantustan.
However, both Bush and the Democratic alternative are determined that they will not concede to Iran the right to develop as a nuclear power.
In fact, things have gone too far for such a settlement. The Iranian administration will not be able to help the US out of the quagmire unless it concedes to it what it considers to be its right.
The other, more powerful factors are, of course, the Iraqi masses and the Arab masses. The former make up the insurgency which has defeated both the US and the UK occupation armies, preventing them from achieving their war aims.
They will not accept any deal, made by the Iranian government, that their insurgency must be halted for the benefit of Bush.
The entire mass of the Arab people is elated with the success of the Iraqi liberation fighters and with the way that the Hezbollah recently defeated the Israeli army in the Lebanon. There is no support for giving Bush a helping hand out of the killing fields of Iraq that he created.
There will be no quick fix between Iran and the US. The talks will be drawn out and arduous, and meanwhile the Iranian programme for developing nuclear power will be advancing.
The US was also yesterday seeking to patch up its rapidly worsening relations with Moscow in the wake of its decision to unilaterally place anti-missile radars and anti-missile missiles in the Baltic States.
Sergey Rogov, director of the USA and Canada Institute, observed yesterday that ‘Russian-US relations are deteriorating sharply.’
He added: ‘One gets the impression that we are fast approaching a new “cold war” when the USA will officially pursue the policy of containment of Russia’, he said.
With imperialism in crisis in every part of the world the situation for overthrowing it in its main bases in the metropolitan capitalist countries is rapidly approaching.