Lord Maginnis of DrumglassBy Lord Maginnis of Drumglass

It is more than simply unfortunate that Western policymakers look at Iran and appear to see only what they want to see. They heap praise on progress in the nuclear negotiations without looking at the actual content. They tune into televised smiles and reasonable-sounding public statements from the Rouhani administration and tune out the bombastic threats, insults and anti-Western rhetoric that invariably accompanies them. They push for large-scale rapprochement with Iran on the apparent assumption that its crimes will disappear if we somehow pretend they don’t exist.

A narrow focus on the Islamic State group and northern Iraq may lead to disaster - again

By Lord Carlile of Berriew CBE QC

With Nouri al-Maliki out as prime minister of Iraq, is the country on the verge of entering into a new era of freedom and stability? Will Haider al-Abbadi truly prove to be the leader of a unity government that reaches out to the Sunnis, Kurds, and others who had been shut out by Maliki's Shia dictatorship? Will the Abbadi government, together with new-found military support from the West, be capable of halting the progress of the Islamic State group and reclaiming Iraq for the Iraqi people?

By Lord Maginnis of Drumglass

Ask to wrong question and one is certain to arrive at the wrong conclusion.

So which came first? When the latest round of negotiations over Iran's nuclear programme ended in Vienna reports from both sides indicated that there had been no progress to speak of.

While nuclear negotiations continue, Tehran tries to crack down on internal dissent

By Lord Carlile of Berriew CBE QC

People who care about human rights and democracy should be appalled by the recent news of the unprovoked raid on a Tehran prison housing many of Iran’s political prisoners. However, as is often the case with these things, it can be important to recognize something of a hopeful story that lays buried beneath the major narrative.