Accession Number : ADA482437


Title :   A US Strategy for Iran (Walker Paper, Number 11)


Descriptive Note : Monograph


Corporate Author : AIR UNIV MAXWELL AFB AL


Personal Author(s) : Douglass, Charles A ; Hays, Michael D


Full Text : https://apps.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/a482437.pdf


Report Date : Apr 2008


Pagination or Media Count : 130


Abstract : This study uses the lens of history to elucidate barriers that have confounded a successful U.S. strategy for Iran. This strategy blends pressure and engagement to overcome these barriers. Iran's perceptions and patterns have historical roots in a sense of Persian greatness, resentment of foreign influence, strategic Persian-Shiite loneliness, and the emergence of pragmatic national interests replacing revolutionary ideology. Analysis further demonstrates how Iran's unique characteristics, such as the populace and nature of the government, portend strategic vulnerabilities that can be used by U.S. strategic planners. Recent U.S. policies for Iran are evaluated to understand U.S. perceptions and how they have contributed to an inability to deter Iran from developing nuclear weapons, proliferating terrorism, and destabilizing the region. A proposed strategy framework expounds upon key assumptions and identification of Iranian centers of gravity. A novel planning construct is created to develop the short- and long-term strategy for U.S. relations with Iran. This study outlines a strategy based on potential vulnerabilities of Iran created by its history and the nature of the country itself. The short-term recommended strategy consists of a prioritized list of six components for creating pressure on Iran. The result of this pressure portends changes in Iran's behavior. Public diplomacy and a strategic communications effort are cross-cutting elements that tie together the components of the short-term strategy. Despite the proposed use of pressure, there are engagement aspects that allow exploitation of positive opportunities created by changes in Iran's behavior. The long-term strategy is comprised of a blend of changed assumptions and tailored goals implemented at a rate tied to improvements in U.S. and Iranian relations. The strategy proposal outlined in this study should be implemented immediately to take advantage of current opportunities.


Descriptors :   *FOREIGN POLICY , *IRAN , *PERCEPTION(PSYCHOLOGY) , *HISTORY , *THREATS , *GOVERNMENT(FOREIGN) , *UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT , LONG RANGE(TIME) , SHORT RANGE(TIME) , DEMOGRAPHY , ECONOMICS , NUCLEAR WEAPONS , STRATEGY , VULNERABILITY , CENTER OF GRAVITY , DIPLOMACY , LEADERSHIP


Subject Categories : Government and Political Science
      Humanities and History
      Psychology


Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE