Saturday, July 11, 2009

Israel struggles to adapt to a changing picture of Iran

Financial Times, By Philip Stephens (2/7/2009)
No one watches events in Iran more closely than Israel. Tehran has long been the abiding preoccupation, some would say obsession of political discourse in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. Now the story line has changed.

At first glance the violent repression deployed by Mahmoud Ahmadi-Nejad’s regime in the wake of last month’s presidential election has been grist to the mill. The images of beaten and bloodied demonstrators have described vividly to a global audience Israel’s long-held view of the Iranian theocracy. Yet the implications do not all run in the same direction. The apparent fixing of the poll result and the subsequent crushing of dissent has also made the case for more rather than less engagement by the west...