They’re in the news often enough, but Iran’s relationship with the world hasn’t actually changed for nearly a decade. The sticking point is the nuclear bomb and no progression or regression is possible in Iran’s relations with the world until a genuine conclusion is reached. It’s hard to read the scorecard, but if the Iranian government’s desire was to win time they have won admirably.
A conclusion will arrive in one of three options: Iran will get the bomb, Iran will be bombed for trying to get the bomb or Iran will renounce the bomb. The best result for everyone, perhaps surprisingly, is for Iran to hurry up and get the bomb. The sooner they do, the sooner Iran can begin to believe what much of the world already knows: Iran has become a major power.
The last several decades have taken an Iran defined by rural inefficiency to an urban nation on the brink of joining the first-world elite. Scholastic achievement, a moderately diversified industry, increased job opportunities, widespread suitable housing, firm infrastructure, female empowerment, more than partial democracy, socialist safety nets: Iran has completed much of the heavy lifting required to raise a country of 70 million high enough to no longer be considered just another Middle Eastern state stuck in the past. Whatever one’s views of the Islamic government, anyone who knows Iran firsthand is impressed but perhaps surprised at the country’s rapid development in the last 30 years.
Iran recently b…