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The Hope For Improved US-Iran Relations

Since the start of the Geneva negotiations between Iran and the P5+1, expectation of peace dividend has increased in Iranian public opinion. More than the nuclear talks itself, people in Iran hope that the unprecedented sanctions will be eased, and that generally speaking the 35 year cold war between Iran and the US would come to an end.

For the first time the press in Iran has directly been interviewing a number of former American and IAEA diplomats.  In that sense an informal conversation has started taking place.

The press and the public in Iran are very curious about the American public perception of Iran, and the possibilities of peace and dialogue; also, very curious and puzzled about the logic of additional sanctions imagined by some Congressmen while the negotiations are successfully moving forward!!  Since most of the public in Iran imagine the American public sphere to be free of ideology; hence, the confusion about singling out Iran in a number of areas. 

The “Occupy Wall Street” as a social protest movement seemed to have attracted more attention and emotional investment outside the US.  In countries such as Iran, there was an exaggerated expectation and view of the movement as a redemptive and cathartic event to limit the unilateralism of “American Exceptionalism”.

Although the internet and cyber communications has dramatically improved and increased communication, nonetheless, cultural misconceptions about “expression of politics,” persists to an extent. From the vantage point of Tehran, the workings of the “System of Power” or the “executive class” in the US cannot be appreciated through mere transcribed and translated emails provided by the biased opposition dedicated to regime-change.

Through the internet and satellite dishes the Iranian middle class -as the privileged instrument of change-- is very much exposed to the Western and alternative narrative, whereas the American public is dependent on the official versions of events relating to Iran-lacking access to an alternative source of news media relating to Iran. 

As the emerging new developments with respect to the Geneva agreement are unfolding, for the very first time in the US public sphere, statements are appearing by officials and official media that encourage dialogue and peace negotiations with Iran. A shift in paradigm has taken place, no matter how modest.

In the interest of the newly achieved understandings between the two societies, through several interviews with Reformist newspapers such as Etemad, analyst Fareed Marjaee has attempted to bridge the cultural-political gap, and remove native misconceptions that may exist in the public imagination.

Related Article: Fareed Marjaee's recent interview with Etemaad daily
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... Payvand News - 02/05/14 ... --

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