Moscow is not happy about Iran's position


MOSCOW. (RIA Novosti political commentator Pyotr Goncharov) - Three major Russian news agencies - RIA Novosti, ITAR-TASS and Interfax - have published a statement by a certain "expert", who is closely involved in the negotiations on the Iranian problem.

To quote the expert, "the situation around Iran is very bad and is going from bad to worse." "A number of Iranian leaders are deliberately escalating the tensions," he said.

What is Moscow displeased about? What does it fear?

To start with, Moscow was disappointed by Iran's response to the decision of the International Atomic Energy Agency Board of Governors to transfer the Iranian file to the UN Security Council. "IAEA has made a rational decision, and Moscow is frustrated with Tehran's spontaneous response to this decision," said the expert. He seems to be hinting that IAEA could have made a much less favorable decision, and that Iran should not pretend it is not aware of this.

Moscow is also disgruntled about Tehran's reaction to its offer to set up a joint venture with Russia on uranium enrichment. Moscow believes that under the circumstances Iran has only one option: to make a political decision on uranium enrichment on Russian territory. The expert said that the negotiations on this issue were very difficult. He said that the Iranians "did not want to listen to reason, and were resorting to tricks", that they were "trying to exploit our pseudo-dependence on cooperation with them, that it is difficult to conduct negotiations using rational arguments pro and contra."

Moscow is not happy about Tehran's general political line, primarily about its deliberate efforts to step up tensions.

There are several reasons behind this line, but the main explanation is that the new President and his entourage cannot give up their election slogans. "They have sunk into this rhetoric and cannot get out of it, revealing lack of competence and experience, which leads to the wrong positioning, and misinterpretation of Iran's place in the world arena".

The Russian official media have openly admitted Moscow's attitude to Iran's negotiating tactics for the first time. This suggests another question: is Moscow going to change its position on Iran? Or is it going to give in to the U.S.?

The expert doesn't think so. He points out that the only option is "to show patience and continue dialog (with Iran) although the negotiators, including Russian representatives, find it very difficult". "Withdrawal from the talks would mean loss of control, in which case the situation will develop in line with Iranian logic," he said, apparently describing the worst-case scenario.

He did not rule out a possibility of a military operation against Iran by the U.S. and its allies. "The U.S. and its allies are bound to have a plan of a combined missile and bomb attack against Iran, but after all, the U.S. has a similar plan against any other country, including Russia, which it has kept since the Cold War times." He said it was "abundantly clear that the U.S. has started playing the Iranian card to distract attention from its other setbacks, if not failures. U.S. leaders are inciting Congress and Israel. The situation is very bad."

It goes without saying that simultaneous coverage of these statements by the three major Russian information agencies is not accidental. It is clear that the journalists have been invited to the Foreign Ministry, and perhaps even to the Kremlin. It is also obvious that these statements are designed for export rather than domestic consumption. They were made to send Tehran a signal that there is a limit to Russia's patience, and that its ability to protect Tehran against the referral of its nuclear file to the UN Security Council is not boundless, all the more so since Tehran is doing everything for the file to land there, as it follows from its conduct during the IAEA emergency session and after it.

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