About the program
The US-Iranian relationship has experienced significant challenges over the past forty years. The lack of diplomatic relations, changes in both the US and Iranian administrations, repeated US military interventions in the region as well as Iran’s support for militant groups and increasingly harsh rhetoric on both sides have further undermined chances for reconciliation. Through a balanced approach of engagement and containment, there is a need to push back against Iranian intervention while promoting US interests, regional conflict resolution, and the well-being of the Iranian people.
The Atlantic Council Iran Program convenes experts, policy makers, activists and other key stakeholders to discuss US policy toward Iran and Iran’s policies toward the US. We provide pragmatic recommendations for a more constructive US-Iran relationship that addresses the current security challenges facing the US and its allies and the security and socio-economic challenges facing Iran. We aim to preserve channels to Iranian officials and civil society through Track II dialogues and to engage Europeans officials and analysts on ways to maintain open channels of communication.
Featured commentary & analysis
Fri, May 28, 2021
The Supreme Leader for years has been agitating to find what he describes as a new generation of young and pious “revolutionaries” to take the helm of the country’s institutions. That aim may be taking priority.
IranElections2021 by Borzou Daragahi
Fri, May 21, 2021
A perpetual candidate, a man who never leaves the scene, an election-addict, and a resilient politician: these are among the kinder ways in which Iranians describe Mohsen Rezaei.
Wed, May 19, 2021
As the Joe Biden administration negotiates a potential return to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action in Vienna, Tehran’s backing of the Bashar al-Assad regime should not be left off the table.
Featured in-depth research & reports
Thu, Apr 29, 2021
A new report outlines an image of women’s struggles for equality to help US policymakers better understand the intricacies of Iranian society and to design policies that support—but do not supplant or undermine—the women’s movement.
In-Depth Research & Reports by
Thu, Jan 14, 2021
President-elect Joe Biden takes office on January 20, 2021, facing a litany of daunting foreign policy issues, from another massive cyber hack by Russian intelligence to alienated allies in Europe and beyond to a regime in Pyongyang that continues to proliferate weapons of mass destruction unchecked. But perhaps the stickiest—and most immediate—crisis the Biden administration […]
Issue Brief by Brian O’Toole
Wed, Nov 18, 2020
A new report presents a series of recommendations for the E-3 and the EU to preserve the JCPOA, promote regional peace and development and boost people-to-people contacts with Iran in concert with the new US administration. Taken together, these steps would amount to a renewed transatlantic diplomatic agenda through which the United States and European allies can stabilize the nuclear file and then build on the resulting diplomatic momentum to address other concerns with Iran.
Issue Brief by
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