In Middle East Diplomacy, the Silent Treatment Goes Both Ways

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Of the 79 recommendations of the Iraq Study Group report that came out recently, the one that got the most attention — even before the report’s release — was the recommendation that the U.S. government talk with Iran and Syria. That recommendation has also met with broad approval in the Arab world, not so much out of affection for the two countries but out of a conviction that dialogue will yield better outcomes than an effort at isolation. Indeed, the Gulf governments’ response to more strident voices in Tehran over the last 18 months has not been a 1980s-style isolation […]


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