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《World Economics and Politics》 2018-05
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Resorting to the Gray Zone: Analyzing the Trump Administration's New Strategy on Iran

Zhang Fan;Institute of American Studies,Chinese Academy of Social Sciences;  
In the contemporary world,great powers have been increasingly preferringto maintain and promote their national interests by gray zone means, implementing some gray zone strategy. Given that Iran has been undermining U. S. interests in the Middle East by using some gray zone strategy,the Trump administration carried out a comprehensive strategic assessment on "the Iranian threat". Based on the assessment,the Trump administration has launched and implemented "A New Strategy on Iran" to resist and pushed back Iran's challenges to the United States. In terms of strategic tools and their choices and utilizations,"A New Strategy on Iran" has embodied the characteristics of a gray zone strategy. Until now,the Trump administration has been using such non-kinetic means as "target financial sanctions","diplomatic pressures","information warfare","political warfare"and "proxy warfare". The choices and utilizations of these strategic tools have reflected such principles as "asymmetry","below war threshold" and "integration ", while taking full advantage of America's superior power,avoiding triggering a large-scale conventional war with Iran, and maximizing the pressures exerted on Iran in order to force Tehran to change its external behavior.The Trump administration has resorted to a gray zone strategy to deal with "the Iranian challenges",which is not a temporary phenomenon or coincidence and is supported by a strategic logic. That logic is that the United States now has the necessity and the capabilities to resort to some gray zone strategy to confront Iran in the Middle East,and that the Trump administration has been confident in the effectiveness of resorting to a gray zone strategy. This paper examines "A New Strategy on Iran" from the perspective of gray zone strategy, which is of great value for us to observe the Trump administration's strategies towards other regional great powers.
【CateGory Index】: D871.2
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