March 20th, 2009
05:00 PM ET

Obama offers Iran 'the promise of a new beginning'

Editors Note: Tonight we will discuss President Obama's remarks about Iran with special CNN correspondent Christiane Amanpour.

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President Barack Obama reached out to Iran on Friday — the start of the Iranian New Year — in a video message offering "the promise of a new beginning" that is "grounded in mutual respect."

The message is a dramatic shift in tone from that of the Bush administration, which included Iran, along with North Korea and Iraq, in an "axis of evil." It also echoes Obama's inaugural speech, in which he said to the Muslim world, "we seek a new way forward, based on mutual interest and mutual respect."

In Friday's video, Obama said: "The United States wants the Islamic Republic of Iran to take its rightful place in the community of nations. You have that right, but it comes with real responsibilities. And that place cannot be reached through terror or arms, but rather through peaceful actions that demonstrate the true greatness of the Iranian people and civilization."

soundoff (5 Responses)
  1. jake

    A u.s nuclear submarine was damaged in a collision with another U.S. Navy vessel off the coast of Iran early Friday, leaving 15 U.S. sailors injured and 25,000 gallons of fuel spilling into the Strait of Hormuz near Iran.
    So what if it was a nuclear fuel spild instead of 25.000 gallons fuel.
    Or Iran blows it self up like old Soviet wile doing nuclear matirials testings.
    Is this not counter productieve, having our ships so klear and near their home"s.

    March 20, 2009 at 9:43 pm |
  2. Annie Kate

    Iran as a friendly nation would be quite an accomplishment for any world leader. I hope the Iranians want to be friends as much as the US does. I know I would feel better if Iran with their nuclear capabilities was our friend rather than our enemy.

    March 20, 2009 at 9:16 pm |
  3. Michelle

    I am not surprised President Obama used
    the internet to talk to the people of Iran.
    Vimeo has an inforgraphic movie done by
    a student at the Vancouver film school. It was
    about Iran being a nation of bloggers and how
    Iran/s young population are using the internet.
    The short is called Iran A Nation of Bloggers.
    My guess is that people in Iran will discover
    the message from Obama.

    March 20, 2009 at 9:12 pm |
  4. Dave

    Why do they deserve anything?

    March 20, 2009 at 7:24 pm |

    Obama is following in the foot steps of Jimmy Carter. He doesn't understand that trying to negotiate with muslims won't work. History proves that. Trying to reach out to Iran is like talking to a brick wall. In the next 4 years, this country will be in far worse shape than it was when George W. Bush left office.

    March 20, 2009 at 6:40 pm |