Hillary’s Silence On Iran

Stephen Kinzer notes that “one of the surest signs that Clinton is running for the presidency is her refusal to take a position on the greatest geopolitical question now facing the United States”:

A strong statement by Clinton in favor of reconciliation [with Iran] would be a game-changer in Washington. She would be giving a centrist, establishment endorsement of her former boss’s most important foreign policy initiative. That would provide political cover for moderate Democrats terrified of antagonizing the Netanyahu government and the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, which is leading the anti-reconciliation campaign in Washington.

Such a statement, however, would risk outraging pro-Netanyahu groups and individuals who have been among Clinton’s key supporters since her days as a Senator from New York. Having spent years painstakingly laying the ground for a presidential campaign, she does not want to risk a misstep that would alienate major campaign contributors.

Kinzer doesn’t think a deal with Iran would have been happened if Clinton had remained the Secretary of State. However, a few weeks ago, Crowley pointed out that Hillary was open to diplomacy:

She was the first Obama official to suggest that Iran could maintain a domestic uranium enrichment program under an international nuclear deal. And one of her most trusted State Department aides, Jake Sullivan, conducted secret talks with the Iranians in Oman. “She was skeptical that diplomacy would work with the Iranians but absolutely convinced that we had to test the possibilities,” [Dennis] Ross adds.