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Opinion

Real axis of evil
European Union's flirtation with the Axis of Evil delays democracy in the region

By Ardavan Bahrami
November 23, 2003
The Iranian

Following the recent terrorist attacks in Istanbul, a Turkish politician stated that "such behaviour will bring Turkey even closer to the European Union, the United States and Israel.  As a matter of fact a team of anti-terrorist experts have arrived from Israel."
 
I have always admired the Turks.  They are, if not the most, definitely one of the most patriotic people I have ever seen.  Since the foundation of the modern Turkish republic in 1920's, Turkey has strongly attached herself to the essence of Kemal Ataturk's doctrine. 

Though at times under threat from Kurdish separatists and Armenian terrorists as well as experiencing interferences from religious fanatics (the latter mainly supported, financed and trained by the Islamic regime of Tehran), Turkey has always reiterated the principles introduced by the founder of the republic, that is, to remain a modern, pro-Western and a totally secular republic.  By adhering to these principles Turkey has successfully managed to separate religion from the state.

The secret to Turkey's triumph is in its uncompromising devotion to Ataturk's vision and its uninterrupted continuation in his footsteps for almost eighty years.  This has created a school of thought that through generations has forged ideals for her people to follow, value and defend.  Fixed ideals, goals and principles are the necessary ingredients for any project or campaign to succeed. This particularly applies to politics.

Iranian nationalists and various political groups have been redefining themselves since the beginning of our exile in the late seventies.  Though adjustments are vital tools of any government in order to keep up with global changes and human advancements, redefinition of one's political campaign or lack of it will only confuse and over a period of time exhausts its followers.

Even today our political leaders who have the Islamic regime as their common enemy have not managed to present a clear manifesto for our future goals and desires as for when and if they come to power.  In order to win people's heart we need to be honest with them.  If we believe in our unique national identity in that region and continue our struggle to create a fully secular regime irrespective of its form (republic or parliamentary monarchy), and desire a country with its foundations moulded in nationalism and patriotism; we need to establish our relations with those with common interests in the Middle East and commence our work and cooperation with other free nations to create a better and stable region.

The European Union has proved over and over in its behaviour that its sole interests and objectives are to gain as many lucrative commercial deals as possible with the protectors and financiers of international terrorism.  In this race the EU has created obstacles and delays for the United States' fight against global terrorism. 

The EU has openly established trade relations with the Islamic regime in order to assert its presence in the Middle East as well as with the newly established energy-producing Central Asian countries.  The winners, at least up until now have been the European countries and the ayatollahs.  The losers in this strife are the Iranian nation and the United States -- who are paying the highest price in this battle against an international terrorism skilfully supported by the EU.

In a visit to the United Kingdom the Israeli Prime Minister, Ariel Sharon tried "to persuade Britain to do more to cut off European support to the three main Palestinian militant groups -- Hamas, Islamic Jihad and the Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigade -- responsible for attacks in Israel." Sharon complained that money from the EU was finding its way into the hands of militants to buy weapons.

It is extremely interesting that on one side, the British government in particular shows its support as a staunch ally of the United States and on the other hand deals with members of "Axis of Evil" and various terrorist organizations.  On this crusade the British, Germans and the French as the main European powers have gained the most lucrative business deals with the Islamic Republic of Iran to a level that makes one wonder that their disappointment with the IR over nuclear developments is only due to the fact that Russians and not British, French or German companies are the providers of nuclear technology to the Islamic regime.

The French support for Iraq and their disagreement with the Iraqi liberation campaign combined with long-standing German financial support for the mullahs in Tehran and the British appetite for cheap oil in the past quarter of a century makes them, the "Real Axis of Evil".

In such global mayhem, Iranian opposition to the anti-democratic regime of Islamic rulers in Tehran must engage in full cooperation with the US administration and with the Israeli government.  It is crucial for the Iranian nation's sake that we establish communication channels and create a network of collaboration with the American government to keep them aware of our nation's democratic aspirations.

On the Israeli front, the Iranian nation's aspirations for peace and progress as well as security and development in our two countries are similar.  A strong, democratic and a secular Iran will not only obliterate the concept of Islamic fanaticism - born out of the Islamic revolution of 1979, but also guarantee and safeguard peace and harmony in the Middle East.  This can only be achieved if Iranians living in the diaspora work together with the Israeli government, the Jewish lobbyists in Washington and the American government to counter balance the European efforts to keep undemocratic regimes in power. 

I have always said that we, secular, pro-democracy campaigners, have only one ally in the region and that is the state of Israel.  Arab states and Pakistan will never be true allies or partners for Iran.  If we are serious about establishing a secular and democratic government for the future of Iran, then we must stop this pointless policy of trying to keep everyone happy!  Hence let's ignore the EU's financial aspirations and wit at the table with those who really want a democratic Iran.

In an interview with Reza Pahlavi on C-SPAN a few days ago, a caller accused him of having met Israeli officials and Jewish lobbyists in Washington.  As a political activist and a pro-democracy campaigner I hope this is true.  I believe we have the right to establish our ties with governments who share the same interests in the region, particularly if that is the only democracy in the Middle East.

Once the tyrants of Qom have been vanquished; Iran, Israel and India need to create an "Axis of Angels" in order to promote cooperation, cultural exchanges as well as safeguarding stability and peace in the Middle East and ultimately in the Indian Ocean.  Of course Iran's relationship with her neighbours and all democracies in the world would be one of mutual respect and constructive engagement, but we must recognize our friends, establish contacts, work towards our mutual interests and strive to achieve them now.

The European Union's flirtation with members of the Axis of Evil is a known fact and it delays the establishment of democracies in the region.  The Islamic Republic is against peace between Israelis and Palestinians.  Its leaders have spoken of their intention to "annihilate" Israel once they acquire nuclear capabilities, while the European Union is collaborating with Tehran's regime to portray a rosy picture of those allegedly reformists as victims of a group of hard-line ayatollahs.

Today we have Axis of Evil and European Union working hand in hand against the United States, Israel and pro-democracy people of Iran.

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