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Andy Stern
Labor leader

Andy Stern

Andy Stern is president of the two-million member Service Employees International Union (SEIU), the fastest-growing union in North America.

Undermining the Adversary

It is always important to appreciate that people who get to top levels of leadership most often have skills and abilities that can be underestimated -- and that should not be forgotten in Iran or in any confrontation with a wayward leader.

In every case of a menacing adversary, strategy matters. Reacting to outrageous behavior or regularly responding to provocations is generally not strategic and can reinforce the wrong behavior.

Building a strong, broad base of understanding, acting with others, picking the right moment to press the case, and looking for key openings to significantly undermine the moral, financial or political authority of your opponent is part of a winning strategy.

Patience can be an ally or an excuse for not acting, and leaders need to understand the difference.

By Andy Stern

 |  September 28, 2009; 1:57 PM ET
Category:  Leadership personalities Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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With Saddam and almost every other dictator you can rely on self-interest to pull them back from the abyss if you give him or her the option.

Iran is run by the Imans who have a self-reinforcing political and religious ideology that encourages meaningless suicidal behavior if there is a chance of future generations winning a struggle with the 'infidels' (non-muslims).

So Andy nothing will work - we can try to delay war while we prepare for it - pray, ask God for forgiveness, store oil - food -- construct shelters but unless you accept that conflict is going to happen and its better for it to happen sooner while the enemy is weak rather than later you will lose more.

Unfortunately, the previous administration never addressed the problem with Iran and so we aren't ready and because of the economic crisis we are having to focus on rebuilding the economy rather then preparing to survive another and bigger war in the middle east.

Posted by: agapn9 | September 29, 2009 10:54 AM
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