Anyone banking on a big-win breakthrough in Wednesday’s nuclear talks with Iran will likely find themselves in the same boat as investors who bet on an instant surge in the Facebook stock price last week.
Iran's chief nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili, right, greets IAEA chief Yukiya Amano during their official meeting in Tehran on May 21, 2012[Pjoto: Hamed Jafarnejad / UPI / FARS NEWS / LANDOV]
If there’s value to be found in nuclear negotiations with Iran, then — like an investment in Facebook — it’s likely to emerge over time. And in both cases, even the long-term outcome remains uncertain.
After weeks of upbeat assessments, Western officials seemed to tamp down expectations ahead of the meeting that got underway in Baghdad on Wednesday. “If we talk substantively on elements of a deal and agree to meet again in three weeks, Baghdad will have been a success,” a senior U.S. official told al-Monitor on Monday. The spin ahead of the talks in recent weeks has been positive — almost too positive for diplomats, who naturally prefer diminished expectations. At home, Iran’s leaders are proclaiming a great victory in the willingness of Western powers to negotiate while Iran continues to enrich uranium, suggesting that they’re preparing their public for a compromised deal that will be sold as a great victory. Read more: