Rapprochement needed on threat of Iran's arsenal

The letter below was published in the Financial Times

Rapprochement needed on threat of Iran’s arsenal
8 July 2008

Sir, I read with interest Anatol Lieven’s appeal for Britain to break ranks with the US in the event of military force being used to prevent Iran developing nuclear weapons ("Britain must act to prevent an attack on Iran", July 7). François Heisbourg, of the International Institute for Strategic Studies and Geneva's Centre for Security Policy has recently published a book, Iran, le choix des armes? , in which he argues that "using force would be marginally less of a calamity than accepting that Iran develops nuclear weapons".
Both Prof Heisbourg and Prof Lieven are respected international policy commentators well known to FT readers. Yet they appear to take diametrically opposing views of the danger an Iranian nuclear bomb represents and what needs to be done to prevent a new nuclear arms race in the region as well as the fears of Jewish people after the call from the president of Iran for Israel to disappear from the map of the world.
Can the FT bring these two intellectuals together because it is important that on Iran, unlike Iraq, Europe (including Russia) and the US and our joint allies and friends speak and, if necessary, act as one.
Denis MacShane,Labour, Rotherham, UK