August 5th, 2010
07:55 AM ET
8 years ago

Debate Iran? No, but talks are possible

Washington (CNN) - President Barack Obama has a chance to make good on the campaign pledge he made during the CNN/YouTube debate back in 2008: to sit down with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

This week Ahmadinejad offered to meet "face-to-face" in a debate before the media "to put the world's issues on the table to find out whose solution is better."

The regime in Tehran has repeatedly rebuffed U.S. attempts at engagement, thwarting the international community as it continues to pursue its nuclear program, which it claims is for peaceful purposes. The United States and its allies maintain Iran is seeking to develop a nuclear weapon.

The White House dismissed Ahmadinejad's offer as a theatrics, saying Iran isn't serious about discussing its nuclear ambitions. But senior administration officials say there are serious discussions taking place between the European Union foreign affairs chief, Catherine Ashton, and Iranian nuclear negotiators about resuming talks.

Full story

Filed under: Iran • Mahmoud Ahmadinejad • President Obama
soundoff (11 Responses)
  1. Gil

    I would hold talks, but not a public debate on TV as the President of Iran has called for. Our Middle East policy, that was created by bush and continued by Obama, is horrible and only creating more anti-American feelings and more terrorists. We have now spread the bad feelings to Pakistan which is turning against us! At least the people who now view us an enemy by 60%.

    August 5, 2010 08:27 am at 8:27 am |
  2. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    When the President was campaigning, I said I thought it was a good idea to sit down with our enemies to see if their can be a deal made. The more I look at the actions of the Iranian government, the more I can care less about them. The people aren't the problem; the government is.

    August 5, 2010 08:37 am at 8:37 am |
  3. diridi

    Negotiations are the best possible way. What did we achieve after ten years with Iraq, and Afghanistan? Nothing except looting our treasury. Muslims are religious fanatics. Just tighten Immigration to all Muslim nations, including India. As I told, target employers who hire illegals, and non-citizens....

    August 5, 2010 09:09 am at 9:09 am |
  4. Adalbert

    Talking is far better than war.

    August 5, 2010 09:21 am at 9:21 am |
  5. Michael Armstrong Sr.

    The best way to settle this is to have a national poll for or against a debate .

    August 5, 2010 09:27 am at 9:27 am |
  6. T'SAH from Virginia

    This is something President Obama can do and he will "MOP THE FLOOR" with President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad – EASILY!!!! – Something President Bush could not do in a thousand years – which is why he didn't!!!!

    Bush rather acclaim his SHERIFF status to make others THINK he was "bad to the bones"...NOT!!!

    August 5, 2010 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  7. Ted van Tol

    Please take that chance Mr. President!
    You will be on your best face to face
    at Camp David and at the end visit together Auswich to show him the history of the jews in WW2.
    This could be a turning poin and only you can do it!

    Ted van Tol
    The Netherlands

    August 5, 2010 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  8. Oy Vey Az

    I think that nukes would work better !

    August 5, 2010 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  9. The Constitution needs updating badly

    Lets face it,we all know Iran has sealed their fate and know it.Its just a matter of time till they meet their maker.

    August 5, 2010 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  10. Thomas

    Talking with a potential adversary is a sign of strength, not weakness.

    August 5, 2010 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  11. to sit down with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

    that is brave of you and maybe crazy brave

    to sit down with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is to open up all manner of criticism from the great hole in the world from which all 'no' comes from

    Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has very little to offer that wouldn't be better served with an entirely new government in place

    if that were to happen however what would happen in the vaccum that would ensue: another Iraq? Afganistan? et al.

    I just don't see where talking with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad gains us anything. Much the same way as I feel about N. Korea. But just as 'W' has better information that the general public (me) have, so do you. I think you are doing a good job (I didn't and don't feel the same way about 'W')

    August 5, 2010 10:50 am at 10:50 am |