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August 26, 2013 11:02 pm

New York Times Editorial Calls for U.S. to Manage Israel’s ‘Enmity’ Towards Iran

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President Hassan Rouhani. Photo: Iranian government.

The New York Times Editorial Board called on U.S. President Barack Obama to manage  “the enmity that Israel and many members of Congress feel toward Iran,” and “invest in a negotiated solution” between Iran and Western nations calling for the Islamic country to follow international protocol regarding its nuclear weapons program.

In an article titled “Reading Tweets from Iran,” published on Sunday, the Editorial Board enthused over what it perceived as conciliatory gestures towards the West from new Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, over his country’s nuclear program.

The Times wrote, “Mr. Rouhani has given reason to hope that he is serious about resolving disputes with the United States and other major powers, most urgently about Iran’s nuclear program.”

The Times takes as its basis for such optimism, a flurry of posts to Rouhani’s Twitter account over the past several months that have expressed a desire to work towards resolving the nuclear stand-off between his country and the West. Additionally The Times cites the appointment of Mohammad Jovad Zarif, seen as a moderate keen on resolving issues with the West through diplomatic means, to the position of Foreign Affairs Minister.

At least one news outlet took exception to the editorial. The conservative New York Sun wrote: “The idea that the little difficulty with Iran has something to do with an enmity that Israel and many members of Congress feel toward Iran is just a classic of Timesian logic.”

“What does the Times figure — that the poor, innocent mullahs were promulgating their peaceable revolution when the dastardly Israelis turned on them for no good reason other than bigotry and the Congress the Times must imagine was bought and paid for by the Zionists suddenly turned against the Iranians? Just out of plain anti-Persian prejudice?” asked The Sun.

Stopping short of offering support for negotiations with Rouhani, The Times editorial asserts that he will be more amenable to Western demands regarding Iran’s nuclear program, though the paper also believes that Rouhani will ultimately refuse to abandon Iran’s nuclear aspirations.

“It would be naïve to assume that the path to ending Iran’s isolation is now clear,” the editorial states. “It seems likely that Mr. Rouhani, with his benign demeanor, seductive tone and more ‘moderate’ message, will be more focused, serious and skillful in negotiations… but still unyielding in Iran’s core demand to retain significant nuclear capability.”

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