To: President Donald Trump
Obama: Please meet with Iran
Dear President Obama
The new moderate President of Iran will be in New York during the next session of the United Nations General Assembly. From sanctions on Iran to the Syrian crisis there are millions of people who would benefit from you talking to the new moderate President of Iran, and seeing if you can work out differences in a diplomatic way.
Why is this important?
In a matter of days the new moderate President of Iran, Hassan Rouhani will be in New York to address the United Nations General Assembly. From sanctions that are hurting thousands of Iranians, to the Syrian crisis, millions of people stand to benefit from President Obama meeting with President Rouhani in an attempt to work out differences diplomatically.
The last time Iran had a moderate President, George Bush named Iran as part of an axis of evil. Those comments made it even harder for former President Khatami to pursue diplomacy, as conservatives in Iran were able to argue that reaching out to the US would only be met with hostility.
We’ve already started repeating the same mistakes again. Congress recently voted to increase sanctions on Iran before the new president was even sworn in. At the moment conservative lobby groups are pushing for President Obama to further isolate Iran. However President Obama has previously said he would be happy to talk to Iran and Iranians. Unless we show the President that such a move would have public support it’s possible that he’ll cave to conservative lobby groups. We saw what happened with Syria. If people stand up and make our voices heard - it can make a real difference in our foreign policy.
President Rouhani isn’t perfect - there’s no denying that. However, pushing another moderate President into a corner in Iran, thus limiting their ability to pursue progressive reforms isn’t good for anyone.
With economic sanctions that are hurting everyday Iranians and with an increase in rhetoric about an attack on Iran - there’s a lot to be concerned about. There is no guarantee of success by talking, however not trying to broker solutions using peaceful means given the stakes is unforgivable.