Our lady in Tehran: Obama's secret negotiating weapon is Iranian-born woman
This year's American elections might have seemed very much like a man's game with President Barak Obama eventually claiming victory over Mitt Romney. But as they say: 'Behind every great man there stands a great woman'. And, when it comes to the difficult task of improving US-Iran relations, Obama has a secret weapon in the form of his Iranian-born female confidante.
Back in 2008 Obama said: "Of course we should talk to difficult adversaries," in reference to Iran. But over the past four years, relations between the countries have deteriorated even further. On America's side Obama has continued crippling sanctions against the Persian nation, while from Iran, accusations have been flying about American "cyber terrorism".
The ongoing nuclear issue was a hot topic at pre-election foreign policy debates with Obama insisting he wouldn't let Iran develop a nuclear weapon. However, despite increasing pressure from Israel on the White House to stop Tehran getting any closer to making a bomb, Obama has refused to be tied down to a specific "red line" and is keeping talks on the table.
Last month it was revealed that the US had been holding secret negotiations with Iran in the hope of setting up clear lines of communication for the new presidential term. On Monday Israeli daily, Yedioth Ahronoth, claimed the key player behind these talks was Chicago lawyer and close friend of Michelle Obama, Valerie Jarrett.
Hoping to establish a better four years of US-Iran relations than the last, Iranian-born Jarrett has reportedly been taking the lead on the undercover talks in Bahrain.
A confidante of the Obama's from pre-presidential days, Jarrett is an obvious choice to take on the sensitive task of developing discussion between the President and Iran's Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei.
With the US State Department estimating that economic pressure on Iran will peak in February or March, Jarrett's reported behind-the-scenes negotiations could come at the crucial time for the tide to finally turn between America and Iran.
Do you think US-Iran relations will improve in Obama's second term, or are they likely to get even worse? Share your comments with us below!