After Khomeini: New Directions in Iran's Foreign Policy

By K. L. Afrasiabi | Go to book overview

paradoxes of policy preferences over the political shape and future of this new "orbit" for foreign policy action.

Chapter Five probes the broader issue of Iran and the new world order. A critical commentary on the Iranians' debate of the issue is presented, followed by a discussion that seeks to highlight the potential contributions of Iran to the emergence of a truly multicentric world, both politically and geoculturally. It will be argued that the Iranian ability to intervene in the shaping of a multipolar, new world order hinges on the discursive capability to offset the unipolarist tendency of the post-communist epoch. Moreover, this chapter contains a lengthy discussion of the Iran-United States "games of strategy" and the potential for a new Cold War in the Middle East. The thesis that I advance here is that this "game" is basically a non-zero-sum competition, which has the potential for simultaneous conflict and cooperation, and that unless this is mutually recognized by Iran and the United States, the possibilities of a peaceful resolution of their conflicts of interests will be postponed indefinitely. This chapter also offers policy suggestions about how to avoid a new Cold War in the Middle East, including a call for a "neo-Nixon" doctrine on the part of the United States. A final concluding chapter speculates on the future of Iranian foreign policy for the remainder of the 1990s. An appendix covering the chronology of Iranian foreign policy during the Kuwait crisis has been added to complement the discussions of the second chapter.


Notes
1.
On the relationship between political change and foreign policies, see among others, G. Boyd and G. W. Apple, eds., Political Change and Foreign Policies ( New York: St. Martin's Press, 1987); M. A. East, S. Salmore and C. F. Hermann, eds., Why Nations Act (Newbury Park, CA: Sage Publications, 1978); P. McGowan and C. Kegley, Jr., eds., Foreign Policy and the Modern World System (Newbury Park, CA: Sage Publications, 1982).
2.
The idea of a "new thinking" in Iran's foreign policy is penned by a number of analysts including M. J. Mahallati, a former Iranian envoy to the United Nations. See "The New Persian Gulf Security Arrangement and the Relevant Factors," The Middle East Insight, Vol. VIII, No. 1, July/ August 1991, pp. 22-25. Also, R. K. Ramazani, "Iran's Foreign Policy," The Middle East Journal, Vol. 4, No. 46 ( Summer 1991), pp. 393-412. The need for a thematic reconstruction of Iran's foreign policy is implicitly stated by Iran's Foreign Minister: "The Islamic Republic of Iran follows those principles in foreign policy which stem from the rich

-5-

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After Khomeini: New Directions in Iran's Foreign Policy
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Tables and Figures ix
  • Preface xi
  • Introduction 1
  • Notes 5
  • 1 - The Dynamics of Iran's Foreign Policy 9
  • Introduction: International Relations Theory and the Islamic Republic 9
  • Notes 41
  • 2 - Iran and the Kuwait Crisis 57
  • Introduction 57
  • Notes 77
  • 3 - The Making of a New Persian Gulf Policy 85
  • Introduction: A New Persian Gulf Configuration 85
  • Notes 108
  • 4 - The Making of Iran's Central Asia-Caucasus Policy 117
  • Introduction 117
  • Notes 145
  • 5 - Iran and the Passages to the Post-Cold War Era 153
  • Introduction 153
  • Notes 187
  • 6 - Future of Iran's Foreign Policy: Agendas for Adjustment 201
  • Introduction: Iran as an International Power 201
  • Notes 211
  • Selected Bibliography 219
  • About the Book and Author 233
  • Index 235
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