The Geneva talks on Iranian nukes have turned into a "pull my finger" charade. Iran says that it's only making electricity, not nuclear bombs. The U.S., Britain, France, Russia, China and Germany are somehow all supposed to agree on reeling Iran in -- but let's face it: Russia and China are close Iranian allies and trading partners, while even Germany and France have significant geopolitical ties to Russia through, for example, the European defense conglomerate EADS and the Nord Stream pipeline running Russian gas into Europe. And Russian President Vladimir Putin's spokesman reportedly bragged to Russian journalists at the latest G-20 summit about Russian oligarchs' influence in Britain.
As with the Syrian conflict, America is wasting its time trying to "resolve" anything directly when it should be relying on regional power players who have actual economic leverage. America is almost entirely energy self-sufficient now, and has no real skin in this game. Its allies do, however -- and this is their fight.
Whether Team Obama currently recognizes this or not, America's primary strategic ally on the Iranian nuke issue, as well as on other issues in the region, is France. The only place Secretary of State John Kerry should be flying in that customized Boeing is to the Elysee Palace in Paris. Anything else is a waste of a carbon footprint -- at least on the Iran file. America would gain from focusing its security efforts in its own backyard (specifically on Mexico), and its economic efforts in emerging South America and Africa, where it should be jockeying for influence against China -- particularly in regions where Islamic terrorism risks thriving in the absence of stability. There's no point in simply duplicating what France can accomplish diplomatically on its own with Saudi Arabia vis-a-vis Iran. Pour any cash left over into domestic priorities. How about showing some leadership by appearing as though you actually know what you're doing strategically, for once. Ten flights to Paris would make more sense at this point than a single flight to some useless poseur summit.
France is the linchpin for resolution of the entire Iranian mess. Here's why.
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