The Magazine

2010: Regime Change in Iran

Engagement Didn't Work.

Jan 4, 2010, Vol. 15, No. 16 • By STEPHEN F. HAYES
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The president has signaled that his patience with Iranian intransigence will end with the close of 2009. It's time for Obama to signal a dramatic change in strategy. Quickly and decisively after the New Year, he should do four things: (1) Make clear that he is on the side of the Iranian opposition and will do everything he can to add to their strength. (2) Enact the toughest possible sanctions on Iran--especially targeting refining capabilities--with broad international support if available, but with as many allies as will go along or unilaterally, if not. (3) Make clear that he will be taking a zero tolerance view of Iranian support for terrorism, including the deliberate targeting of U.S. diplomatic and military personnel in Iraq and Afghanistan. (4) Make clear that the use of force to stop Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons isn't off the table, and order the military to be ready to act should it become necessary.

In 2009, we tried to engage the Iranian regime. In 2010, let's try to change it.

--Stephen F. Hayes