Laura Rozen has an “article”:http://commentisfree.guardian.co.uk/laura_rozen/2007/05/the_hardliners_lose_a_round.html in the _Guardian_ about the demise of ISOG. It includes a good discussion about N Burns’ motivation for getting rid of it.
Part of it was because Burns thought ISOG
bq. *was leading to confusion – and turf battles – over the thrust of US policy toward Iran.* While many factions inside and outside the US government favour regime change in Iran, Condoleezza Rice recently said that the US is instead forging an international coalition to pressure Iran to change its roguish behaviour. “We’re very clear. The policy of the US government is behaviour change. We’re on the record, a million times,” said one US official involved with Iran policy says of the demise of ISOG.
Moreover, ISOG became irrelevant once regime change was off the table:
bq. Another Iran hand in the US government says *Burns’ problem with ISOG was more pragmatic: he thought ISOG was having too many meetings and wasn’t doing anything.* “ISOG started with a more robust expanse and aim…. but it had become somewhat irrelevant,” says a congressional staffer knowledgeable about US policy toward Iran. “*Once regime change was taken off the table, the raison d’etre of ISOG was somewhat removed. People were meeting for the sake of meeting, and it lost its salience.*”
Given that ISOG was “pretty damn busy”:http://www.totalwonkerr.net/1446/end-of-hot-isog-action a few months ago, it seems reasonable to infer that its mission was indeed about regime change.
Laura also notes that
bq. one US official suggested that the Senate Foreign Relations committee may want to ask some new questions – such as whether any entities have been created to succeed ISOG.