Must Read

PrintPrint CiteCite
Style: MLAAPAChicago Close


CRS: Iran: U.S. Concerns and Policy Responses

Author: Kenneth Katzman
June 22, 2009


This CRS report details the Obama administration's approach in dealing with Iran's growing strategic capabilities and regional influence, noting the debate over whether or not a policy of engagement is politicallyfeasible in the aftermath of the country's disputed presidential election.

President Obama has said his Administration shares the goals of the previous Administration to contain Iran's strategic capabilities and regional influence, but the Obama Administration has formulated approaches to achieve those goals that differ from those of its predecessor-in particular through expanded direct diplomatic engagement with Iran. This effort has begun to be put in practice with messages to the Iranian people by President Obama, and through a growing number of invitations to and contact with Iranian diplomats at multilateral meetings, including those on Iran's nuclear program. The Administration also has de-emphasized policies that have angered Iranian leaders including: ratcheting up international sanctions, efforts to promote democracy in Iran, and the potential for U.S. military action. In May 2009, President Obama said his Administration might renew the previous focus on sanctioning and pressuring Iran if, by the end of 2009, Iran does not show signs of willingness to compromise. Bills in the 111th Congress, such as H.R. 2194 and S. 908, would tighten U.S. sanctions on Iran by amending the Iran Sanctions Act to penalize sales to Iran of gasoline.

Full Text of Document

More on This Topic


Propitiating Iran

Authors: Ray Takeyh and Reuel Marc Gerecht
Weekly Standard

The recent hostages-for-criminals exchange with Iran is the latest example of the Obama administration’s willingness to concede American...


Obama's New Dance With Iran

Authors: Philip H. Gordon and Richard Nephew
Politico Magazine

In Politico, Philip Gordon and Richard Nephew argue that the implementation of the Iran nuclear agreement makes the world safer and buys...


Troubled Waters

Author: Sean R. Liedman
U.S. News and World Report

The swift release of U.S. sailors from Iran is a positive sign, but Iran's navy still acted illegally.