Monday, July 19, 2010

Iran's Record, Part 1

The latest bugaboo, as the Establishment tries to prep us for a war of aggression against Iran, is the absurd claim that Osama bin Laden is hiding out in Tehran. Here, Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad treats both that claim and Establishment mouthpiece George Stephanopolous with the derision they so richly deserve:

The opening of the current UN nuclear conference saw some unintentional hilarity from Hillary. According to Madame Secretary of State, "Iran will do whatever it can to divert attention from its own record and to attempt to evade accountability." She called Ahmadinejad's comments at the beginning of the conference, "the same tired, false and sometimes wild accusations" against the United States and other countries.

We'll examine Mrs. Clinton's accusations separately. "Bad record" and "lack of accountability" pretty well characterize the US government's relations with Iran:
  • Operation Countenance, 1941: Seeking control of Iran's oil and an overland route to deliver Lend-Lease supplies to the Soviet Union, Great Britain and the Soviet Union invade and occupy neutral Iran. Reza Shah Pahlavi, citing the Atlantic Charter, appeals to American president Franklin Delano Roosevelt to pressure the Brits and Soviets to back off. FDR, busy lying to the American people about what he's up to in Europe and the Pacific, tells Reza Shah to go fly a kite. Besides, Reza Shah already has "the statements to the Iranian Government by the British and Soviet Governments that they have no designs on the independence or territorial integrity of Iran," so what's he bitching about? Iranian resistance to the invasion is swiftly swept aside. 800 Iranian soldiers, sailors and airmen are killed, including the Imperial Navy commander Admiral Bayandor, along with approximately 200 civilians. Reza Shah is arrested and sent into exile in South Africa and his son, Mohammed Reza Shah Pahlavi, is installed as puppet monarch. The Soviets foment trouble in the northern parts of the country and refuse to comply with the withdrawal deadline (six months after the cessation of hostilities) agreed to at the Tehran Conference. Three years of occupation leaves the Iranian economy and middle class financially devastated.
Accountability? Exactly none. Like other Allied war crimes, including the slaughter of the Polish officer corps at Katyn and Churchill's attack on the Free French fleet at Mers-el-Kebir, the unprovoked invasion of neutral Iran goes unpunished. No financial reparations, for loss of life and property in the invasion and the tremendous costs imposed on Iran, have ever been made. Impunity trumps accountability.

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