Calling Tehran

At TMS today, there’s a long and fascinating piece by career Republican foreign policy hand Lawrence Wilkerson, who caps an extensive and highly negative account of the neocon takeover of Bush 43 Iraq policy with an argument that only a more practical attitude towards Iran can solve many of the region’s problems. That’s particularly true right now, he says, given the need for a new power arrangement in Iraq to fight IS terrorism.

His piece is timely reading today, insofar as Tehran has just announced that it (like the U.S.) is endorsing Haider al-Abadi (designated by Iraq’s president yesterday) as a replacement for its long-time ally Nouri al-Maliki as prime minister of the country. We don’t know at this point if there were any direct talks between U.S. and Iranian officials on this subject, or if it’s just a matter of converging interests. But even if it’s the latter, that convergence is worth thinking about on a broader scale.

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Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore is a political columnist for New York and managing editor at the Democratic Strategist website. He was a contributing writer at the Washington Monthly from January 2012 until November 2015, and was the principal contributor to the Political Animal blog.