What Country Most Resembles Iran in Its Power Structure?

Trita Parsi may be the world’s leading authority on the triangulation between Israel, Iran, and the United States. In an op-ed for the Washington Post on January 13 titled How Obama should talk to Iran, he wrote: “A paralyzing question often asked in Washington is: Who do we talk to in Iran?”

The futile search for a sole authoritative Iranian partner often causes diplomacy to be rejected before it even begins. [When negotiating a nuclear deal with Iran] Turkey and Brazil did not fall into this trap. Instead, they recognized that there are many power centers in Iran — including the supreme leader’s office, the parliament, the president’s circle of advisers, the National Security Council and influential clergymen — all of which need to be included in the process. … Brazil and Turkey built confidence with the relevant Iranian players and won their support for mediation.

In fact, the United States should know that. For

“There is one country that resembles the Iranian power structure,” a prominent journalist close to Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu told me. “It’s the United States of America. [To get a deal], talking to the president is not enough. You have to talk to everyone.”

In other words (jerked-around sentence alert!)

Just as … no major decision is likely to be made in Iran unless a range of decision-makers is brought into the discussion. … no country expects to sign a significant deal with the United States without addressing the concerns of the White House, the State Department, the Pentagon and Congress.