The decision by US President Donald Trump to prolong the lifting of some sanctions against Iran for a further 120 days has reopened the 4-year old “what to do about Iran” debate.
While some have condemned Trump for renewing sanctions relief for the mullahs, others have castigated him for his call to re-negotiate the “nuclear deal” connoted by his predecessor Barack Obama.
Conducting the “what to do about Iran” debate in a calm and constructive way isn’t easy for two reasons.
The first is that the Iran issue has become linked with the United States and, worse still, more recently with Trump.
As we all know whatever issue involving the US, even remotely, is instantly upgraded for better or for worse.
No one cared when a million people were massacred in Rwanda or that an entire community is driven out of Burma through ethnic-cleansing.
The US wasn’t and isn’t involved.
The European Union foreign policy point-woman Federica Mogherini travels all the way to Rangoon not to plead on behalf of the Rohingya but to criticize the US for “threatening the nuclear deal with Iran.” The Vatican calls for “respect for the nuclear deal” but takes care not to mention the word Rohingya.