Europeans and Americans agree on unity on Iran
The German Marshall Fund in co-operation with the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) hosted a distinguished speaker's tour titled Iran and the Bomb: Will It Get It and What Will It Mean from March 26-28, 2007 in three European cities: Paris, Brussels and Berlin. Reuel M. Gerecht, Resident Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), David Ignatius, columnist for the Washington Post and Yossi Klein Halevi, correspondent for "The New Republic", participated in panel discussions in each of the cities.
In Paris, the speakers were joined by Philippe Carré, Director of Strategic Affairs Security and Disarmament of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Dr. Olivier Roy, Director of Research of the CNRS. In Brussels, Robert Cooper, General Director for External and Politico-Military Affairs at the General Secretariat of the Council of the European Union and in Berlin, Ruprecht Polenz, Chairman of the Foreign Policy Committee of the Bundestag complemented the panel.
Conducted under Chatham House Rule the discussion revolved around the questions of how effective are the sanctions imposed by the UN Security Council, what are the differences in approaches of the U.S. and Europe, what will Israel's response be and what if the sanctions fail. The worst case scenario of a failure of sanctions and a possible military strike created intensive debate in all three cities, underlining the urgency of the topic. Europeans, Americans and the Israelis all agree that a demonstration of unity within the international community is necessary and this has been started by the consensus in the Security Council. The international isolation of Iran was perceived from all sides as one of the most crucial elements in resolving the crisis diplomatically, stressing once more the importance and necessity of a multilateral approach towards Iran.