His Inner Neocon?


Reihan Salam wants Obama to "embrace his inter neocon":

Obama, like Reagan, is a master at linking American interests to the greater international good. Whether he likes it or not, his engagement strategy with Iran has been revealed as a hollow hope, one that rested on an overoptimistic interpretation of Iranian intentions. As former Bush foreign policy adviser Peter Feaver has explained, Iran is far more likely to negotiate from a position of weakness than of strength. Rather than reassure the Iranians with a wink and a nod that we’re ready to do business, President Obama should be building an international coalition to isolate a recalcitrant Iran as thoroughly as the the West once isolated apartheid-era South Africa. Bush, to the chagrin of the neocons, could never pull this off. But Obama can.

I find all this premature. We do not know where this moment leads. Obama's caution in this is far more genuinely conservative than the neocon fanatics' zeal to wage a war or a blockade.