George Bush is no Santa Claus
An American military operation in Iran will
do more to hinder democracy in the region than anything the mullahs
are capable of
January 24, 2005
For observers of the relationship between the powerful
and the powerless, there is a moment of shock when we realize that the oppressed
appears not only at peace with their situation, but willing, even grateful, towards
their oppressor. We wait in vain for anger, instead there is patience, justification,
Such are the dynamics of power, the relational trends between
the oppressor and the oppressed. Children see their abusers as good and themselves
as bad. Rape survivors turn rage at the attacker inward -- into shame, self-loathing,
and despair. Hostages protect their kidnappers. Cult initiates -- decades
later -- find it painful to criticize the collective. Women find excuses
for their battering partners.
And, apparently, a group of affluent Iranians beg the United
States government for military occupation.
In times of difficulty, frustrated by decades of watching as
mullahs have plundered and murdered and succeeded, these so-called "political
activists" raise their hands to the sky and pray for the powerful,
the mighty, the all-knowing, to help them.
Only it is not to God
that they pray. Perhaps decades of praying to God for political
help has proven passé. These gentlemen are now at their
knees, praying to American neo-cons in Washington. They are actively
lobbying the Bush administration to initiate military strikes against
Iran. Some have gone so far as to express hope that the United
States military will occupy Iran.
The unfathomable is happening
-- Iranians are actively working for foreign military occupation.
One reads the headlines and cannot help but think back to the Capitulation
of 1872, when our illustrious Iranian leaders gave Great Britain
complete control of Iran's natural resources in exchange
for paid vacations and hush money. Even the British were surprised
that we agreed -- the British Foreign Office described it "the
most complete and extraordinary surrender of the entire industrial
resources of a kingdom into foreign hands that has probably ever
been dreamed of, much less accomplished, in history."
Here we are, in 2005, ready to give up even more. This time,
the stakes are higher. We gamble not only with money and pipelines,
but with human blood. Well, at least some do. The "pro-democracy
activists" tight with the Bush administration can stay comfortable
in their Los Angeles mansions while they barter the lives of unknown
thousands in a land far, far away. Will they feel so righteous
when CNN broadcasts pictures of child-corpses in Natanz? Will they
feel like progressive pro-democratic activists when the headlines
are not of Karbala and Tora-Bora, but of Rasht and Kashan?
I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but George Bush is no Santa
Claus. He will not show up to give you presents of free elections,
prison closures, and villas on the Caspian Sea in exchange for
a few nibbles of chocolate chip cookies. The price will be high,
not only in human lives lost, but in dignity and the absolute annihilation
of any hope for meaningful political change in Iran.
To invite occupation of your homeland is not honor. To turn to
a foreign military is not strength. To give the West all power
is to deprive the self of any influence. These are the actions
of a few short-sighted men with unknown aims, hidden financial
agendas, and simple minds. These people have such little faith
in their culture and history that they are willing to hand over
the most precious right -- the right of self determination -- and
become what is essentially a colony of the United States.
An American military operation in Iran will do more to hinder
democracy in the region than anything the mullahs are capable of.
Under pressure and the threat of foreign occupation, Iranians will
do what all nationalists would do when the lives of their people
are at risk -- circle the wagons. Given the choice between prostitution
to a foreign occupier or supporting (for better or worse or worse
than worse) a government born literally of Iran, it is obvious
what they will choose.
What type of nationalist openly invites
war against his nation? What type of progressive prays for
military strikes to devastate his own people? If successful, they
be giving terrorist regimes and the most extreme fundamentalists
for decades of recruitment and propaganda.
They will give the mullahs what they are starving for -- a purpose
for being, a reason to live, a justification for rule.
And the people, meanwhile, will have no hope of attaining the
most vital, necessary ingredients towards freedom: self-determination.
To learn more about the "activists" begging the Bush
administration to strike against Iran, please watch some of the
ranting lunatics on Iranian satellite television. Seeing is believing.
Some of them even go so far as to interview shiny, happy Iraqis
thrilled with the beauty and success of US-inspired democracy.
The audacity, the simplicity, the utter stupidity will take your
breath away. To learn more about true Iranian activism, pick up
a biography on Dr. Mossadegh. At the very least, you'll stop
believing in Santa Claus.