Iran and the West: A Symposium

Iran and the West: A Symposium

The editors of Dissent asked a number of distinguished commentators to respond to the following statement and questions:

For a quarter of a century, Iran has been ruled by a militant theocracy. After the shah’s regime–authoritarian, brutal, and backed by the United States–was overthrown, the new regime quickly proved itself to be authoritarian, cruel, and self-warranted by Islamic fundamentalism. Reform efforts have proved chimerical, and Tehran has pursued nuclear capabilities with vigor, long deceiving the International Atomic Energy Agency and Western interlocutors about its efforts. To what extent should the character of the Iranian regime govern Western responses to its ambitions? Should Iran be considered just one state among others, seeking its legitimate self-interests? What “threat” does the current Iranian regime pose in today’s world? –Eds.

Read the responses:

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