Is this really the choice that is causing so much pain for the people of Iran? What difference will it make for the rest of us?
Over 66 million people live there, according to the CIAs world factbook, and the median age is 27, which means most of the people who are in this charter-member country of the Axis of Evil were born after the Islamic revolution of 1979.
For those people, it seems theyve grown up knowing nothing else. But in the 21st century, is it really possible for people to know nothing else?
Well, that probably depends on which people we’re talking about. Nobody believes the North Koreans understand the world outside of their prison walls. And there are still some backwards people living in jungles are deserts who know little to nothing about the world. But Iran? Those people are pretty smart, I suspect they know more about the world than many of us have given them credit for knowing.
Theyve embraced technology as part of their lives. It takes almost no effort to see the videos posted on YouTube.com about the on-going civil disorder there. Even with the government crack-down on the internet and cell phone service, the people there manage to spread the word about their fight to world, while the rest of the people watch and wonder about this struggle.
Iran was once a great ally of the United States. Less than half of the people in Iran can remember such a time. I dont know how many in the United States remember that era. But Im one who does.
Prior to 1979 revolution, Iran had a monarch named Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi. Many of the their military trained in the United States. I met a few of them and we became friends.
When you make friends in the military, you know that your actual association with them will be short-lived–we all move around so much. Even more so with foreign exchange personnel, as they are destined to return to their homelands after their precious training. Still, wed like to think that we will remember each other.
To make it easier, two of my old friends, Amir and Babak, gave me a few Iranian coins. In return I gave them each a shiny new 1975 Eisenhower dollar. At first they protested, saying that the silver dollars (actually cupronickel) were of greater value than their gifts. I explained that the coins were tokens of friendship, not something that would be spent.
They accepted my explanation and then gave me some of their currency with handwritten notes of friendship. There was a time when I could read them, but alas skills not practiced soon fade away. The first one is a 50 rials bill from Babak, signed front and back.
The next two are a twenty rials and then a one hundred rials signed by Amir.
We crossed paths again later at a base in North Carolina. One weekend in 1976, Amir traveled with me to my hometown in Virgina (about 150 miles from where we were stationed) and I introduced him to my family and friends. At the time, I considered him to be one of my closest friends. Eventually we went our different directions and lost contact with each other. But thanks in part to these out-dated bills, I’ve never really forgotten him or Babak.
Watching the 1979 revolution from afar, I assumed he’d met his end in the violence that transformed the greatest regional ally of the United States of the time into our sworn enemy as they exported terrorism to the rest of the world. Most recently it seems they are intent on obtaining nuclear weapons in order to destroy Israel. Many Americans blame Achmadinejad, while others blame the left-wing, religious leaders, who hold the real power.
Some Americans have been confused over the left and right of things. Simply put, left-wing political theorists believe the government is the state and people are just part of the state. The more power the government has– power it takes from the people–the more leftist the government. Powerful leftist nations include North Korea, Cuba, Iran, and China. Historical leftist nations which used to exist include Hitler’s Nazi Germany and the USSR. Leftist nations are sometimes called socialist nations.
Mousavi was Prime Minister of Iran from 1981 to 1989. That was a pretty tough time for Iranian and US relationships. In 1987, we even had a little war with them in the Gulf, called the ’87 Persian Excursion by the Navy. Iran was littering the Gulf with random mines and shooting at ships from oil platforms as they attempted to disrupt the free-flow of oil. One by-product of that Persian Excursion was the rebuilding of the Air Forces conventional bombing capability–as it was embarrassing to just watch the Navy fix a problem without Air Force play. That conventional bombing capability came in handy during the 1991 Desert Storm–our first war against Saddam Hussein.
Thirty years ago, the outcome of a revolution pitted Iran against its former friends and most of the world. Will this new revolution reverse all of that? Will Mousavi be the leader that the Iranian people are dying to have? Will the nations who Irans government terrorized since 1979 come to the aid of these people?
So once this unrest or revolution is sorted out, will Iran be any different–as far as the rest of the world is concerned? Will the people fighting and dying in the streets, since the bogus election, be willing to accept merely exchanging one puppet-president of a cleric-led oligarchy for another. Especially when that oligarchy appears to be dead-set on obtaining nuclear weapons in order to attack Israel.
Over the years, Israel has proven that it will act in concert with other nations to defend itself, but when other nations will not assist them–they are the masters of unilateral, preemptive action. Thinking out the consequences of such activity, it is possible for us to imagine the level of human-suffering that is about to happen.
This new revolution may be the only thing that can prevent the suffering of an impending nuclear war.
Thus it appears that whatever the outcome of this revolution is–the result cant possibly be worse than it is now, or at least what it is about to become. Therefore, the United States, Israel, Iraq, Afphganistan, and all other nations who have suffered from the terrorism exported from Iran over the last thirty years should provide whatever support the bold people need. Who knows? We might even find an old friend when this is all over.
It just makes sense.