The Supreme Leader addresses Air Force officers, 7 February 2013
So why is the Supreme Leader maintaining the opening for direct talks?
1. Khamenei may see the recent, serious political crisis as a distraction which allows him to slip in the possibility of negotiations with the US> br>
2. The international sanctions are starting to hurt. br>
3. The Syrian regime will not be able to survive the current crisis, and its fall will be a huge strategic blow to the Islamic Republic --- last week, the head of the Basij militia said Syria is more important to the regime than the province of Khuzestan, in defence of which many thousands of Iranians died during the war with Iraq in the 1980s. br>
4. The Islamic Republic had hoped that the Arab Spring would bring it new allies in the region. Indeed, the movements have isolated the regime even more.