May 5th, 2008 NYTIMES:
|In particular, the McCain campaign has explicitly linked Mr. Yousef’s statements to Mr. Obama’s repeatedly stated willingness to talk to so-called “rogue states” like Iran, North Korea and Cuba.|
“Well, Iran is obviously an important supporter of Hamas,” Mr. McCain said Friday.
“Senator Obama wants to sit down and have negotiations and discussions with the person who just yesterday called Israel a quote ‘stinking corpse,’ ” he said, referring to Mr. Ahmadinejad, and “who continues to advocate quote ‘wiping Israel off the map.’ ”
Susan E. Rice, a former State Department and National Security Council official who is a foreign policy adviser to the Democratic candidate, said that “for political purposes, Senator Obama’s opponents on the right have distorted and reframed” his views.
Mr. McCain and his surrogates have repeatedly stated that Mr. Obama would be willing to meet “unconditionally” with Mr. Ahmadinejad.
But Dr. Rice said that this was not the case for Iran or any other so-called “rogue” state. Mr. Obama believes “that engagement at the presidential level, at the appropriate time and with the appropriate preparation, can be used to leverage the change we need,” Dr. Rice said. “But nobody said he would initiate contacts at the presidential level; that requires due preparation and advance work.”
November 2nd, 2007:
|Making clear that he planned to talk to Iran without preconditions, Mr. Obama emphasized further that “changes in behavior” by Iran could possibly be rewarded with membership in the World Trade Organization, other economic benefits and security guarantees.|
“We are willing to talk about certain assurances in the context of them showing some good faith,” he said in the interview at his campaign headquarters here. “I think it is important for us to send a signal that we are not hellbent on regime change, just for the sake of regime change, but expect changes in behavior. And there are both carrots and there are sticks available to them for those changes in behavior.”
Barack Obama own damn website:
|Diplomacy: Obama is the only major candidate who supports tough, direct presidential diplomacy with Iran without preconditions. Now is the time to pressure Iran directly to change their troubling behavior.|
Obama would offer the Iranian regime a choice. If Iran abandons its nuclear program and support for terrorism, we will offer incentives like membership in the World Trade Organization, economic investments, and a move toward normal diplomatic relations. If Iran continues its troubling behavior, we will step up our economic pressure and political isolation. Seeking this kind of comprehensive settlement with Iran is our best way to make progress.