Let's See What "Listening" Accomplishes

Carol Platt Liebau
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Posted: Jul 16, 2008 12:18 PM
The Bush Administration has sent a "high level envoy" to "talk" with Iran -- or, more accurately, to "listen" to what Iran's officials have to say.

Well, it will be an interesting experiment.  Throughout the campaign, Barack Obama has consistently faulted The White House for failing to reach out to Iran, even at one point promising to meet with Ahmadinejad without precondition (Chavez and Castro, too). 

This listening exercise isn't the "aggressive personal diplomacy" Barack has promised -- nor is the US offering what Barack called "certain assurances in the context of them showing some good faith” -- but it is the most extensive contact we've had with Iran in 30 years.

According to Barack's formulation of how the world works, this meeting should result in some reciprocal sign of good faith from the Iranians.  Let's see how that all works out.