So as mentioned in previous entries, the New York Times reports that we have to arm the Middle East to the teeth “because of Iran.”
Let’s see, how many unwise actions has the U.S. justified over the years by saying (either in so many words or just through implication): We’re doing this “because of Iran.” If you can think of more examples, please feel free to leave them in the comments or email them to me and I will add them to the list, which follows:
“Because of Iran....”
1. We supported Saddam Hussein throughout the 80s
2. We had to invade Iraq in 2003–that’s a post-invasion justification
3. We have to stay in Iraq because if we don’t, Iran will take over
4. We’re losing the Iraq war
5. We have to put missile defense systems in Europe, to Russia’s chagrin
6. We have to sell arms to the Saudis, the people who attacked us on 9/11 (according to the official story)
I’m sure there are many more examples of this kind of warped thinking. But let’s debunk this idea that we’re forced, yes, forced into feeding the military-industrial complex all because of Iran.
Why “Because of Iran” excuses are bullshit:
1. We overthrew Mossadegh in 1953, using fake terror, fake stories in the press, etc.
2. We then installed the shah–we toppled a democratic government and replaced it with a monarchy, and the shah was not a nice ruler
3. We cut off diplomatic relations in 1979 because of the Tehran embassy hostage crisis, which was a direct result of our continuous support of the shah
4. We gave chemical and biological weapons to Saddam for him to use against Iran
5. Iran is a signatory of the Non-Proliferation Treaty, which entitles them to use nuclear energy for peaceful purposes, among other things.
6. Iran expressed great sympathy for the U.S. after 9/11
7. Bush said Iran is part of the “axis of evil”
8. In 2003, Iran offered to open a dialogue with the U.S. and put everything on the table: support for Hezbollah, nuclear programs, recognition of Israel, etc.–Bush administration ignored Iran’s advances. You can read the offer for yourself here.
Looking at these lists, surely anyone can see that what we have done is use Iran as our bogeyman, our go-to country for demonization, overthrow, and weakening. Then when they naturally react against the things we’ve done to them, we say they’re evil and the biggest threat in the world.
We say they’re violent and outrageous and can’t be trusted. However, the Iranians know that’s just projection–that the U.S. is really the state that’s violent and can’t be trusted.