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Patrick Disney

Entries by Patrick Disney

Get Serious About Freeing American Captives in Iran

(8) Comments | Posted February 23, 2011 | 10:27 AM

About six months after the US Embassy in Iran was overrun in 1979, the American diplomat and hostage John Limbert welcomed an emissary from the revolutionary government. Limbert's facility for the Persian language was on full display when he eerily commented about the Iranian cultural quirk known as...

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Is the Sanctions Debate Justifying the Military Option?

(1) Comments | Posted April 26, 2010 | 6:24 PM

To an outsider, it may seem like Washington is united in favor of imposing new sanctions on Iran. But, like in Iran itself, the internal wrangling over this question among Washington policymakers is much more complex and divided by factions than one may assume.

Congressional leaders from both parties have...

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Changing Course on Iran Sanctions

(2) Comments | Posted April 22, 2010 | 8:48 PM

New sanctions on Iran are about the surest bet in Washington these days.

Both the House and the Senate have passed a "crippling" gasoline embargo, and the administration has all but given up talk of negotiations in favor of pressing for UN Security Council sanctions "that bite." In fact, the...

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Amanpour Is Being Attacked Because She's Iranian

(124) Comments | Posted March 25, 2010 | 12:34 PM

As with anything in politics, there should be room for a lively debate about Christiane Amanpour's recent appointment to host ABC's This Week. Legitimate arguments can be made both for and against the decision to hire an acclaimed foreign correspondent to do a Sunday morning show that previously...

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Iran's Next (Literal) Tectonic Shift

(3) Comments | Posted March 22, 2010 | 9:28 AM

In mid-January, an earthquake in Haiti killed 230,000 people. Last month, an even larger quake rocked Chile, leaving an estimated 700 people dead, despite the latter being more than 500 times more powerful.

The explanation for how this could be possible is surprising: according to the definitive study done...

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Iran at a Crossroads

(5) Comments | Posted March 8, 2010 | 10:21 AM

Iran used to be a pretty black-and-white issue. You either wanted war, or not. Diplomacy, or not. Regime change, or not.

Those days of simple choices between two clear opposites-they're long gone.

Now, the rise of an indigenous opposition movement has thrown a new set of variables into questions of...

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Some in Congress Get Smart on Iran

(22) Comments | Posted December 15, 2009 | 2:10 PM

For more than two decades now, US policy on Iran has depended almost entirely on sanctions. Even now, Congress is set to pass the latest in a long line of "crippling" pressures: a gasoline embargo that both Republicans and Democrats believe is unlikely to alter Iran's behavior in...

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When All You Have is a Hammer, Every Iran Problem Looks Like a Nail

(68) Comments | Posted August 7, 2009 | 11:41 AM

For most of the month of August, Congress will be on recess. Consider this the calm before the storm.

Most in Washington are aware that September will bring with it the biggest push for Iran sanctions in years. AIPAC has been lobbying for months on the Iran Refined Petroleum...

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On Iran, the Power of Obama's Silence

(145) Comments | Posted June 14, 2009 | 6:16 PM

"Help us."  That was a comment, translated from Farsi, that was posted on the blog that I manage for the National Iranian American Council yesterday.  It came from a reader in Tehran, imploring that someone in the West do something to stop what he or she...
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