Tag Archives: Iran

Sep. 5, 2012 Iran Ambassador Seyed Mousavian

On Wednesday, September, 5, 2012 in San Francisco at The Commonwealth Club, Ambassador Seyed Mousavian, Visiting Research Scholar of the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University spoke about his new book “The Iranian Nuclear Crisis: A Memoir” with Philip Yun of the Ploughshares Fund.

Being a diplomat in the Middle East is not easy. Mousavian was the Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council. A student in international affairs, he got his Masters degree in Teheran in 1998 and his PhD in Kent, England in 2002. The next year he represented Iran negotiating with the EU and the International Atomic Energy Agency. By 2007, Iran’s Ahmadinejad administration charged him with espionage while dealing with European nations. His book is a personal account of his years as a diplomat and now dissident, his assessment of Iran’s history and its possible future. There is a great deal of mistrust between Iran and the West, not to mention internal divisions in Iran. There are American forces in Iraq and Afghanistan, on either side of Iran. This makes Iran nervous. Iran has a nuclear weapons program and has funded terrorism. This makes the West nervous. Without establishing trust, there will be no resolution to the impending threat.

As for internal politics, you have to remember this is a country where cultural conservatives have joined forces with a wealthy oil faction struggling to keep control against a more open tolerant sustainable society. And then there is Iran. I wonder if they want tax cuts too? :-)

Copyright 2012 DJ Cline All rights reserved.

Jun. 7, 2012 Colin Powell Commonwealth Club

On June 7, 2012 in Santa Clara at The Commonwealth Club, Dan Ashley of ABC KGO talked with General Colin Powell about his new book “It Worked for Me: In Life and Leadership.” Powell wanted to talk about the principles that guided him from the immigrant neighborhoods of New York City to corridors of power and how a new generation can follow that path.

He talked about his career after retiring from the military as Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff. He turned down offers from Wall Street firms that simply wanted his name and reputation.  He served as U.S. Secretary of State in the second Bush administration but left after the invasion of Iraq. He spoke about dealing with North Korea and Iran on the futility of developing nuclear weapons to stay in power. In his travels Powell discovered that leaders of all nations face the same problems of finding jobs for people. Perhaps when they realize they are all in same boat they will begin to row in the same direction.

Copyright 2012 DJ Cline All rights reserved.