This is an extremely well written and well documented book about a very important issue of world politics. The carefully laid out analysis of the Iranian mind set, based on both the political goals and historical background help the reader to understand the issues relative to the relationship between Iran and the West, as well as Iranian influence in many other issues in the Middle East. As I read the book, the counter-revolution nin Egypt (the ousting of Morsi), as well as the apparent turning of events in the Syrian civil war in favor of Assad were underway - and the perspectives presented in this book help to better understand these events which could well reshape the middle East for generations. If you want to understand what is happening in Iran and the rest of the Islamic world, this book will help you. Of course the detractors of the book are legion - as can only be expected for an essay which demonstrates that American foreign policy and communication concerning the middle east is mostly erroneous, biased, and probably deliberately deceptive.It is always difficult for anyone to accept the need to revise ones deep-seated belief systems.
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51 internautes sur 58 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
Cri de Coeur23 janvier 2013
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This is a well-written, frank, and courageous book. The master idea is that there are unpleasant times ahead for the US unless it changes its policy from a hegemony-oriented policy to a modus-vivendi-oriented policy. The conclusion of the book is: it's time for an American president to go to Tehran.
It offers an unorthodox analysis of Iran and is a scathing criticism of the US's foreign policy. The authors argue that the US is simply on the wrong trajectory leading to very unpleasant outcomes. The Grand Strategy of the Obama's administration (like the admins before him) has been to effectively a "regime change" in Iran. It has been endorsed and pursued semi-silently, not openly. The strategy is to topple the Iranian regime "by other means" and replace it with a puppet regime made of the Iranian émigrés, cranks, Saudi-backed militant lunatics and double-agents. This unpleasant compote we can observe today in Syria. The strategy is extremely ill-advised. The "other means" are: 1] a run on the Iranian currency 2] sanctions and embargoes against Iran 3] cyber-weapons and "worms" targeting Iran's nuclear facilities 4] targeted assassinations of top Iranian nuclear scientists. 5] sanctions against Russia, its banks and firms doing business with Iran.
This strategy may prove successful. But the collateral damage will be very unpleasant for the US. Apart of putting the world of international relations in flames, one of the victims will be the relations with Russia -- my former country -- which has been already much frayed because of the conflict in Syria and the US's support of the anti-Putin opposition last year. Put it in the context of the Sunni-Shia struggle in Syria, where the US is siding with the Sunni Gulf states against Iran and Russia -- unwisely in my view -- and it looks like a devil's brew. There will be no winners, we can be sure of that. The US would be much better off by talking to Iran seriously. This book is calling for this persuasively. Are there defects in the book? Sure, but the pluses of the book by far outweigh its minuses. The US policy-makers need to hear criticisms like that. I highly recommend it.
37 internautes sur 43 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
A unique book with an objective and brave look at U.S Iranian relations. A MUST READ.25 janvier 2013
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The U.S has been adamant on establishing itself as a world power by attempting to destroy any nation that fails to comply with its views and interests. The 50 countries that the U.S has attempted to sabotage or destroy since 1949 (be that openly as it did in Iraq, or covertly as it did in Latin American) bear witness to this. The world may be at the brink of full scale war if the U.S does not adjust its policy. It is failing as a superpower and must begin to change its foreign policy, namely its approach to Iran and the Middle East. The risk is just too great for the U.S to continue its hegemonic practices.
It is actually refreshing for a change to see two real experts who are prepared to tell Americans some unpleasant truths about US foreign policy; and more importantly the truth about Iran. It provides a realistic portrayal of the positions of both the U.S and Iran, and shows how much can change if the U.S would adopt a more positive, non-confrontational stance towards this great power.
40 internautes sur 50 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
REQUIRED reading on US-Iran relations10 janvier 2013
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Unless you've read this book, frankly you have no business having any opinions on US-Iran relations. The authors, each experienced in the actual conduct of US foreign policy and not mere armchair generals or think-tank denizens, meticulously define and then debunk common myths and the "conventional wisdom" about Iran prevalent in Washington foreign policy circles and in the the mainstream media, and show how these myths have thus far accomplished nothing to serve US interests except to put the US and Iran on the path of yet another needless confrontation in the Mideast built on lies. Their arguments are fully backed up with extensive citations to sources, and they lay out a comprehensive case for a new approach to Iran along the lines of "Nixon going to China," by substituting realism for wishful thinking. It takes intellectual bravery to go against the tide on what has become a deeply polarized and emotion-laden issue. This book stands out by far amongst all the ill-researched and agenda-driven books on US-Iran relations. 5 stars.
28 internautes sur 36 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
A must read for those interested about Iran-US relations22 janvier 2013
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The most important contribution of this work is that it draws attention to often ignored facts, data, and analyses that could be of significant importance in US-Iran relations. Even if one does not fully agree with the facts and analyses provided in the book, at the very least it is providing a very different angle to the topic at hand for students of International relation who are seeking to increase their understanding of Iran based on facts and not ideologically driven agendas. Those who categorically reject this important work and label the authors as "Iranian Lobby and Agents" are doing a disfavor to their own academic integerity, rationality, and objectivity and are willing, because of their deeply rooted hatred towards the Islamic Republic of Iran, to remain blind to the facts on the ground. This work is a must read for all who are interested about Iran AND are willing to approach the topics presented therein with an open, rational, and objective mind.
8 internautes sur 9 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
A Must-Read for Anti-War Activists18 juin 2013
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The dogs of war in the U.S. media bark and, in true Don Quixote fashion, it’s a sign that authors Hillary and Flynt Leverett are on the move. In their electrifying new book, Going to Tehran: Why the United States Must Come to Terms with the Islamic Republic of Iran, the former National Security Council experts – who were forced out of their positions for their opposition to Washington’s war-mongering and occupation – take on the growing myths told by the U.S. government about Iran.
Liberals, conservatives and centrists in the U.S. media hysterically attacked Going to Tehran as soon as it came out. The Wall Street Journal derided the Leveretts as “Washington’s most outspoken defenders of the mullahs,” in a particularly nasty hit-piece called “I Heart Khomenei.” Laura Secor of the New York Times called the book “one-sided” and a “mirror image” of the anti-Iran propaganda churned out by the U.S. government. Foreign Affairs claims they “overargue” their case for ending U.S. hostilities. The Weekly Standard accused them of “paranoid dogmatism,” and The New Republic called the book “an act of ventriloquism,” presumably with the Iranian government as the puppet master.
When I see a book receive universal condemnation from the corporate-owned media, I take it as a sign that I need to read it. And ultimately every anti-war activist in the U.S. owes it to the people of Iran to check out this well-researched, persuasive and highly readable case against war with Iran. After all, we live in a country where Argo, a ludicrous xenophobic hit-piece on the Iranian Revolution, wins the Academy Award for Best Picture at the 2012 Oscars. As the Leveretts show in their book, the U.S. government and the corporate media work hand-in-glove to dominate the narrative on Iran, telling and repeating all sorts of myths and falsehoods to build the case for war against a large, independent, oil-producing country in the Middle East. Going to Tehran sets the record straight.
The book focuses on dispelling three elements of the U.S. mythology around Iran, breaking each into three-chapter parts. First, it challenges the myth that Iran is an irrational state “incapable of thinking about its foreign policy interests,” arguing instead that the Islamic Republic is incredibly rational in its fight for survival as a revolutionary state in a region historically dominated by U.S. imperialism and Israeli militarism. Second, it unravels the myth of Iran as an illegitimate state, by showing the overwhelming popularity of the Iranian government and refuting the unsubstantiated claims of electoral fraud in 2009. Finally, it challenges the myth that the U.S. can – or should – topple Iran through sanctions, diplomatic isolation and the threat of war.
Going to Tehran is written primarily to persuade policy-makers to abandon the current U.S. strategy of toppling the government of Iran. Throughout the whole book, the Leveretts seem frustrated at the very likely possibility that their well-researched case against war with Iran will go unread by politicians. However, the primary audience that will benefit from Going to Tehran is not lawmakers, but rather anti-war activists. Anti-war organizers could use the book as a starting point for reading groups and teach-ins about the nature of U.S. aggression.
The disorganized response by the U.S. anti-war movement to NATO’s attack on Libya proves the need for a unified, principled, anti-imperialist opposition to war that seeks to build meaningful international solidarity. And in 2013, Going to Tehran is an important contribution to that struggle.
I wrote a more thorough review on the book that appeared on Fight Back! News in June 2013. Amazon won't let me post links, but a Google Search will turn it up if you're curious on reading more about this outstanding book.