IT doesn’t matter how Iran sees its own potential or how it analyses conditions in the region. It doesn't matter how one may feel about America's position and whether it is weak or strong. What matters is that Iran's leaders stop deluding their people with false slogans, and that they begin to look at things realistically. The extremely complex conditions in the Gulf, both politically and economically - and the fact that 20 percent of the life-blood of the global economy passes through the Strait of Hormuz – makes its security of paramount importance.

Based on this more realistic perspective, Iran wouldn't have to suffer its situation alone. But by drawing a line in the sand and defining the limits of its ultimate policies, Iran takes away a tool for dealing with disputes peacefully and is opening the door to war.

By maintaining its stubborn policies and trying to take advantage of the rapidly-changing balance of power around the Gulf, Iran will get nowhere. If President Ahmadinejad continues his rhetoric, saying things like, "We’ve reached a point of no return;" if Iran insists on going ahead with its nuclear program, challenging the world community and resisting a diplomatic solution, Iran will certainly set fire to the entire Gulf, because the world is determined not to tolerate such a threat to this vital waterway.

We and Iran sail in the same boat. No neighboring country wants anything to happen - either to the boat or to Iran - but if Tehran insists on challenging the international community, then the future of us all is at risk. Iran knows that the Gulf region is a single boat, and it also knows that it is prohibited from declaring war or entering into a confrontation without coordinating with the other passengers.

More and more, we can see Tehran's ambitions toward hegemony and domination and its growing influence in the region. It's authoritarian intentions and signs of aggression are opening the door to regional conflict at all levels; ideological, economic and military. The region is in a very vulnerable state and can ill afford wreckless adventurism and attempts to wrest control of the beliefs and obligations of the faithful.

In order to maintain its present position at the United Nations, Iran depends on other global powers, including Russia and China. But this dependence will not bring them the desired result. Because even though these countries sympathize with it, they too have interests, and when the crucial moment comes, their support will evaporate.

States are not accustomed to conducting themselves like charities, but rather to protecting their own interests by any means possible. We have seen North Korea, for example, quite sanely abandon its nuclear program in exchange for a million tons of energy [heavy crude] per year, which is the amount it needs to cover domestic demand and will lead it on a path out of famine and isolation..

We recognize that Iran has the right to benefit from the peaceful use of nuclear power, but right now it must first prove that it is not manufacturing weapons of mass destruction. By insisting on continuing with its present program, it is showing its suspicious intentions and closing the door to diplomacy. In effect, it is declaring an end to politics and the beginning of war.

We believe there is time for Tehran to come to its senses, and we hope that it does, because now it would be a war of all against Iran - both Americans and non-Americans alike. It would be a war fought on multiple fronts including nuclear and sectarian [Sunni vs. Shiite].

The Iranian regime is fabricating an external crisis to maintain itself in power and deflect the aggravation of the Iranian people, while the rest of us in the region struggle to stave off the disaster this could cause.