[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Tuesday, 25 January, 2005, 16:23 GMT
Regional press split over US Iran threat
Iranian President Mohammad Khatami
Iran has come under increasing pressure from the US

The issue of whether Washington is likely to take military action against Iran generates debate both there and in countries with a pressing interest in the issue, notably Israel and Pakistan.

In Israel, which fears Tehran's nuclear potential, commentators pull no punches in warning that military action should be one card on the table.

Commentators in Pakistan, Iran's Muslim neighbour and a strong US ally, call on Washington to eschew violence and seek a diplomatic solution.

In Iran itself, the press appears more relaxed, believing that the US is unlikely to risk over-extending itself by launching a military campaign while still embroiled in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Talk of military action against Iran should be taken at face value, because there may soon be no choice. But before that happens, these threats should spur Western non-military sanctions that - if they are comprehensive, swift and drastic - could still address the problem as effectively at a lower risk and cost. If military action becomes the only remaining option, Europe will have no one to blame but itself.

Israel's Jerusalem Post

It is important for the Americans not to give the impression that they are eager to precede diplomatic discussions with a military strike, but also to remind the Iranians that their bluff in the nuclear poker game is liable to fall apart in the face of a card that is not part of the European deck - the Israeli joker.

Israel's Haaretz

According to some news reports, the US is close to punishing Iran. The US could use Pakistan to this end because Iran has been involved in creating unrest in Balochistan. But we say Pakistan and Iran are brother Muslim countries. The US and the UK are levelling various allegations against them to destabilise both of them. The people of Pakistan hope that their government will not give a helping hand to the US for any action against Iran.

Pakistan's Nawa-i-Waqt

The Pakistani ambassador to the US, Jehangir Karamat, has urged the US to use diplomatic means to end its differences with Iran because military action would cause instability in the entire region. We say this suggestion is correct and realistic. If the US attacks Iran, Muslim countries would be right to conclude that the US campaign is not against terrorism but against the Muslim World.

Pakistan's Pakistan

America knows that Iran is not Iraq and cannot be occupied easily. Therefore it is increasing diplomatic pressure on Iran and its partners. The current trend indicates that the US will be content to exert pressure on Iran over the next four years.

Iran's Iran Daily

There simply aren't any American troops available to invade Iran. What would really tip the whole area into acute crisis is a re-radicalised Iran that has concluded it will never be secure until it has expelled the United States from the region.

Iran's Tehran Times

American rulers have not been able to achieve their ideal security situation in Iraq or Afghanistan yet. So it doesn't seem rational for the US to open a new front by attacking Iran, which would be more difficult than ousting the small regime of the Taleban or the unpopular Baath regime.

Iran's Resalat

The Islamic Republic of Iran cannot remain immune from mounting US pressure. In the face of a new round of war-mongering policies and propaganda warfare, Iran needs to adopt a comprehensive approach based on boosting transparency and international trust without compromising its national interests.

Iran's Iran Daily

BBC Monitoring selects and translates news from radio, television, press, news agencies and the Internet from 150 countries in more than 70 languages. It is based in Caversham, UK, and has several bureaus abroad.

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East | South Asia
UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature | Technology | Health
Have Your Say | In Pictures | Week at a Glance | Country Profiles | In Depth | Programmes
Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific