Some interesting developments out of Iran on the nuclear front. Via the New York Times Michael Slackman:
While much attention has been focused on Mr. Ahmadinejad’s decision to try to pack his cabinet with loyalists, his choice of a well-respected physicist, Ali Akbar Salehi, as a vice president and the head of Iran’s nuclear agency has been greeted in the diplomatic and scientific community as signaling a possibly less dogmatic, more pragmatic nuclear policy.
Two other recent developments have added to that perception. The first, according to diplomats and scientists, is recent indications that Iran may be prepared to be more cooperative with the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna. The second was Mr. Ahmadinejad’s decision to retain the foreign minister, Manouchehr Mottaki, and not to move a more conservative ally into that position.
Slackman of course notes that “experts” aren’t quite sure what to make of these moves. A calculated softening? Another pledge that Iran will later renounce? A product of the disarray that still grips the Iranian political system in the wake of the election? PONI thinks it could be a reaction to the (non?)story surrounding whether the IAEA has hidden information about the military dimensions of Iran’s nuclear program, and subsequent demands from the U.S., UK, and others that whatever information has been hidden be included in the next IAEA report on Iran.