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Center for a New American Security: Iran: Assessing U.S. Strategic Options Report

Authors: Dennis B. Ross, Counselor and Ziegler Distinguished Fellow, the Washington Institute for Near Eastern Policy, Suzanne Maloney, Senior Fellow, Foreign Policy, Saban Center for Middle East Policy, Brookings Institution, Ashton B. Carter, Ford Foundation Professor of Science and International Affairs, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, Vali R. Nasr, Adjunct Senior Fellow for Middle Eastern Studies, and Richard N. Haass, President, Council on Foreign Relations
September 22, 2008

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In order to evaluate U.S. policy options, the Center for a New American Security (CNAS) convened a bipartisan group of experts on foreign policy and national security, retired military personnel, former diplomats and other government officials, and specialists on Iran and the region. Ambassador Dennis Ross presented a paper on diplomatic strategies for dealing with Iran, and Dr. Suzanne Maloney wrote on potential Iranian responses. Dr. Ashton Carter evaluated various U.S. military options, and Dr. Vali Nasr described likely Iranian reactions and other potential impacts. Ambassador Richard Haass considered the challenges of living with a nuclear Iran. Each of these papers represents an important contribution to a much-needed national discussion on U.S. policy toward Iran. Based on these papers and expert group discussion, as well as additional research and analysis, three CNAS authors (Dr. James Miller, Christine Parthemore, and Dr. Kurt Campbell) proposed that the next administration pursue “game-changing diplomacy” with Iran. While both Iran and the international community would be better off if Iran plays ball, game-changing diplomacy is designed to improve prospects for the United States and the international community irrespective of how Iran responds

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