• The Heritage Network
    • Resize:
    • A
    • A
    • A
  • Donate
  • A Nuclear Iran, An Inexperienced EU Foreign Minister

    EU Foreign Minister Catherine Ashton

    Iran’s announcement today that it is a nuclear state makes the appointment of the spectacularly inexperienced Catherine Ashton as EU Foreign Minister even more ridiculous.

    Her speech at the Munich Security Conference last weekend was a snoozer of epic proportions – even by Brussels standards. However, it was her statements on Iran which beggar belief. At exactly the time when everyone’s patience has finally run out with Iran, Mrs. Ashton decides, not to side with French President Nicolas Sarkozy in calling for sanctions forthwith, but instead, publicly sides with the Chinese Foreign Minister, stating: “[the] possibilities of dialogue are not exhausted.” She went on to make her position very clear: let’s not be hasty in discussing sanctions. It’s a shame that she didn’t let the State Department know, since they insisted the possibility of sanctions would be discussed within “a few days.”

    Those remarks came just before Iran’s nuclear proclamation, and news that continues its crackdown on e-mail and social media, such as Gmail and Twitter. With Iran’s threat to wipe Israel “off the face of the earth,” Europe and Washington should cooperate to impose targeted and heavy sanctions immediately — regardless of U.N. Security Council backing or the lack thereof. It also can’t afford to rule other options out, including a last-resort use of force against Iran.

    After revelations that Ashton returns to London every Friday for intense coaching from the foreign office to catch up on everything she doesn’t know about foreign policy, it’s clear that she now needs a new speechwriter too.

    Adding insult to injury, Mrs. Ashton has taken over from Javier Solana as head of the EU3+3 (the six powers involved in talks with Iran). With no credibility and negligible experience on the world stage, Mrs. Ashton should do the honorable thing and hand chairmanship of the group over to her British or American colleagues.

    The EU has long been out of its depth in dealing with Iran, and consistently underestimated their commitment to pursuing the illicit development of nuclear weapons. EU negotiations have allowed Iran to play for time and the ostrich-like Mrs. Ashton continues to stick her head in the sand, saying she doesn’t understand why Iran continues to break the rules. The time for half-measures and engagement strategies is over. Now is the time for action.

    Posted in Security [slideshow_deploy]

    3 Responses to A Nuclear Iran, An Inexperienced EU Foreign Minister

    1. Jay says:

      Your ignorance and bankrupt neocon idea,s are mind bugling and about this tired quote of to wipe Israel off the earth or map, do yourself a favor and Google what he actually said before you necon got grab of it and made it to this Hallmark propaganda and printing all over and repeating thousand a day all over media.

      Aren't you guys have a little honesty in what you print and say, shame on you,

      By the way do you know that Iran is the only country in Mid East to have Jewish population that against all odds and pressure from outside refuse to leave Iran.

      I am not by any means advocating for Iran regime which is to my belief is a repressive regime but should not stand in calling a lie a lie when you see it.

    2. Calgary, Canada says:

      Just another example of the lack of leadership of the EU!

    3. Amir, home says:

      this articles shows how mush so called experts or even politician in Europe are out of touch with reality in iran. sarkozy and his minsters can make all kind of threats and interview with isreal media that they want but no-body really cares. EU politicians follow what US is telling them, so they are cheeleaders. the real "Driver" is US, that after 30 years of saction and (Plus 3 UN one)

      Cannot stop iran scientific progress. I also know most iranians donot like their goverment but remember no matter who is in power in the country, an advance independent nuclear technology is supported by every one in iran.

    Comments are subject to approval and moderation. We remind everyone that The Heritage Foundation promotes a civil society where ideas and debate flourish. Please be respectful of each other and the subjects of any criticism. While we may not always agree on policy, we should all agree that being appropriately informed is everyone's intention visiting this site. Profanity, lewdness, personal attacks, and other forms of incivility will not be tolerated. Please keep your thoughts brief and avoid ALL CAPS. While we respect your first amendment rights, we are obligated to our readers to maintain these standards. Thanks for joining the conversation.

    Big Government Is NOT the Answer

    Your tax dollars are being spent on programs that we really don't need.

    I Agree I Disagree ×

    Get Heritage In Your Inbox — FREE!

    Heritage Foundation e-mails keep you updated on the ongoing policy battles in Washington and around the country.