Reaction to editorial on Iran
To the editor:
In an editorial published on Wednesday, the author argued that concrete evidence showing that Iran attacked oil tankers in the Gulf must be established before there is any military action by the United States against the country. This is absolutely right. However, the author, importantly, fails to properly contextualize the situation.
The author writes:
“But students of history during the past few decades will recall that Iranian leaders sometimes behave in what many would term an irrational manner.”
Let’s take a look at what history also shows us.
First, consider that what may look like “irrational” behavior from an American perspective, is, from an Iranian perspective, a perfectly rational response to perceived American imperialism and aggression. Students of history will recall that the US, in 1953, orchestrated a coup against a leader who was established via democratic procedure and replaced him with a cruel and oppressive dictator. This was done to protect corporate (oil) interests.
Second, as it relates to regime changes orchestrated by the United States, consider the war in Iraq. Students of history will recall that the “evidence” used to prove that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction (the pretext used to invade the country), was in some cases misrepresented, and in other cases fabricated entirely. This was done willingly and knowingly by those in the administration.
Third, consider John Bolton, the current National Security Adviser. Bolton has been calling for regime change in Iran for decades. Indeed, he believes that the official foreign policy stance towards the country should be regime change at whatever costs.
With these considerations, I don’t mean to paint Iran as an entirely innocent party when it comes to the tensions between our two countries. But rather, I urge readers to consider why the tensions exist in the first place. To consider how much we should trust any evidence of Iranian involvement, when Americans have been lied to before in order to drag the country into a war that has arguably made the region less stable. And finally, I urge readers to consider whose interests are actually served by our country entering yet another war.
Consider both the human costs of war and whether they’re worth paying at all.