Talks with Iran a promising development

At long last, some diplomatic common sense! It's good news for America and the world that a meeting will take place between Secretary of State John Kerry and Iranian Foreign Minister Zarif ("Obama pledges diplomacy with Iran, puts onus on Rouhani," Sept. 24).

There may be an Islamic fundamentalist jihad against the West, and we've been told many times Iran is the leader of this religious war. But even if it is true, cutting off all communication is not the way to go. Even during the coldest days of the Cold War, this country never closed all doors to negotiations.

Although questions about sanctions against Iran may not be on the table, with any luck the subject will arise. Imposing crippling economic embargoes on any nation is a de facto act of war. Sanctions result in hardship and suffering for all, not just the leaders. We need to loosen these policies everywhere, including the ones imposed on Cuba.

Hopefully, there now will be a thaw in American-Iranian relations. After more than three decades of foreign policy stupidity, it's good to discover there are now some enlightened souls at the State Department!

Rosalind Ellis Heid, Baltimore

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