"Gonzalez (founder, Nationandstate.org, an open-source foreign policy think tank) calls for a new approach for US foreign policy towards Iran grounded in a more sophisticated understanding of Iran's trajectory of independence, a trajectory that may have led to violent resistance to foreign intervention but also has brought Iran closer to homegrown democracy than any country in the neighboring Arab world. He argues that this trajectory of independence has been developing for roughly the past one and a half centuries and that it is set to place Iran's increasingly educated and pro-American youth at the forefront of Iranian politics. He sets this argument next to an analysis of the legacies of recent Presidents Ahmadinejad, Khatami, and Rafsanjani and concludes his discussion with a proposal for engaging Iran and enlisting it as an American ally in the Middle East."
Reference & Research Book News
"Gonzalez deserves credit for reflecting Iranians' sentiments, self-image, national aspiration, and historical awareness. Such understanding, although essential for negotiating with Iran, is perhaps most lacking among commentators vociferously prescribing confrontation. The author's recognition of Iran's ancient cultural institutions, the effective progressive role of women from ancient times to the present following Iran's constitutional revolution, and the impromptu vigil in Tehran's streets to express sympathy for 9/11 victims is both helpful and inspiring…. Recommended. All levels."
"This book offers an important new perspective to the debate about U.S.-Iranian relations. Much like Nixon's strategy of detente during the 1970s, Gonzalez suggests that the time is ripe for a reduction in tension with the Islamic Republic. His arguments for replacing ideological confrontation with strategic engagement are detailed and thought-provoking and should inform foreign policy discussions for many years."
James J. F. Forest, United States Military Academy