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Targeting Iran (City Lights Open Media)by David Barsamian
Synopses & Reviews
Cultural Writing. Political Science. Iran and the United States are on a collision course. Washington's saber rattling in response to Iran's hardline Islamic government eerily evokes U.S. rhetoric prior to the invasion of Iraq. Iran's strategic position, its posession of some of the world's largest oil and natural gas reserves, its fundamentalist government, missile arsenal, anti-Israeli policy and nuclear defiance are not mixing well with Washington's grand design for the Middle East. The United States is operating within a preemptive strike doctrine, and war is on the table. The U.S. is targeting Iran. In TARGETING IRAN, critically acclaimed interviewer, David Barsamian draws out the analyses and perspectives of three well-known experts on Iran and U.S. foreign policy: Noam Chomsky, Ervand Abrahamian and Nahid Mozaffari.
"Barsamian, founder and director of Alternative Radio and coauthor of Imperial Delusions, has produced a highly informative book that examines the U.S.-Iran standoff through interviews with Noam Chomsky, Ervand Abrahamian and Nahid Mozaffari. Topics of discussion range from the U.S.-backed 1953 coup to poetry in the years after the Islamic revolution, but the exposition of why Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad thinks Iran has the upper hand and the prospects for and likely consequences of a U.S. military strike in Iran are some of the most powerful portions of the book. 'Both sides are playing brinksmanship,' claims Abrahamian. One of the central conclusions is that the U.S. and Iran are teetering precipitously on the edge of another war that neither side can afford to participate in. In Barsamian's (and his interviewees') view, the best hope for a bloodless conclusion to the current standoff is for the US to approach Iran without demanding it submit to American demands before they even reach the bargaining table. This slim book is heavy with historical and cultural background that doesn't often find its way into news accounts; it's a great primer on a simmering conflict." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
Book News Annotation:
David Barsamian is widely known in progressive circles for his interviews with prominent intellectuals on a wide range of political issues. In this volume, he presents three 2007 interviews with longstanding critic of US foreign policy Noam Chomsky and two Iranian- born professors of Middle Eastern history, Ervand Abrahamian and Nahid Mozaffari, on US-Iranian relations and the possibility that the US government may attack Iran over its nuclear energy program or on some other grounds. Barsamian and his interlocutors aim to provide critical background omitted from the US media when policy towards Iran is discussed, such as the decades-long support for the hated dictatorship of Shah Reza Pahlevi, and to introduce a more nuanced picture of Iranian society than typically understood by the average American. Annotation ©2007 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
An invaluable primer on the US-Iran conflict by U.S. and Iranian scholars.
Iran and the United States are on a collision course. David Barsamian presents the perspectives of four experts on Iran who discuss the 1953 CIA coup and the rise of the Islamic regime, Iran’s internal dynamics and competing forces, relations with Iraq and Afghanistan, and the consequences of US policy.
Ervand Abrahamian authored Iran Between Two Revolutions.
Noam Chomsky’s most recent book is Failed States.
Nahid Mozaffari edited the The PEN Anthology of Contemporary Iranian Literature.
David Barsamian’s books include Imperial Ambitions with Noam Chomsky and Original Zinn with Howard Zinn.
About the Author
David Barsamian is an American radio broadcaster and writer of Armenian descent. He is the founder and director of Alternative Radio, the Boulder, Colorado-based syndicated weekly talk program heard on some 125 radio stations in various countries.
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