22 February 2012

Strauss Center Distinguished Scholar Will Inboden writes about the role of history in the current Iranian situation in this piece on the Foreign Policy Shadow Government blog.

Inboden begins his blog post by demonstrating that both optimists and pessimists on Iran’s controversial nuclear program can draw from history and cite examples to support their claims. Inboden, however, cautions against using history for prescriptive purposes, referencing a recent article by Strauss Center Director Frank Gavin and James Steinberg that deals with this issue. According to Inboden, the insight we can take from history is that Iran is in a unique and historically unprecedented situation.

Inboden agrees with Gavin and Steinberg that there is a critical need for understanding history and better utilizing its insights across disciplines. He concludes with the idea that history can inform and contribute to the policymaking process if used in the right way.