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Iran Debates Obama Negotiations

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Gareth Porter: While Obama talks carrots and sticks, Iran questions sitting at the table. Porter speaks with Paul Jay and The Real News Network.

Hours after returning from a fact-finding mission to Iran, Gareth Porter sat down with The Real News Network's Senior Editor Paul Jay to discuss his findings. Gareth responds to recent Obama statements toward Iran, pointing out that Iran has a long history of walking away from negotiations with the West and this debate over the value of participation in negotiations is raring up again against the backdrop of Obama's election victory.

The debate in Iran over entering negotiations, primarily to address Iran's nuclear power program and support for Hamas and Hezbollah, has now split between those in the Iranian leadership who believe that Obama's victory represents a change in direction in US foreign policy that may validate Iran's participation and those who believe that the forces in Washington are too strong to permit such a change in direction.

Gareth explains that since Obama's appointment of Hilary Clinton as Secretary of State, a key player in the passing of the controversial Kyl-Lieberman Amendment that labeled the Iranian Revolutionary Guard as a terrorist organization, served as a signal to most that Obama would not bring the change of course that Iran was hoping for.

This is Part 1 of a 3-part series with Gareth Porter. Stay tuned for more of the series and see more from previous interviews with Porter on The Real News Network here.