Australia: Iran Just Wants to Be Friends

Washington shouldn't look at Iran as a 'rogue state,' cable argues
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 13, 2010 10:39 AM CST
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad listens to a question during his press conference in Tehran, Iran, Monday, Nov. 29, 2010.   (AP Photo/Vahid Salemi)
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(Newser) – Australia has urged the US to go easier on Iran, arguing that its nuclear weapons program is intended only for deterrence, according to a cable released today by WikiLeaks. “It’s a mistake to think of Iran as a ‘rogue state,’” the head of Australia’s Office of National Assessments wrote in a 2008 cable. Last year, Australian intelligence said that, despite rhetoric to the contrary, Tehran had little hostility for the US, the Christian Science Monitor reports.

In fact, a “grand bargain” with the US represents Tehran’s best hope for ensuring its national security, the Australian security agency opined. The ONA sees “Iran’s acquisition of nuclear as inevitable,” but only sees that development as troubling insofar as it might lead to a war with Israel, which could destabilize the Middle East.

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