Friday, January 25, 2019

The Truth about Iran

Among life’s mysteries is this. At a time when the Western media and Western  politicians are up in arms about the authoritarian regime in Saudi Arabia, at a time when Western European politicians are doing everything in their power to prop up the regime in Tehran, precious few publications are reporting on the systematic oppression occurring inside Iran.

Among those that have is the Guardian. Kudos to the Guardian. It is reporting Amnesty International’s recent compendium of the horrors that the Iranian regime has been visiting on its citizens. One feels compelled to note that the this same Iranian regime also received considerable support and sustenance from the Obama administration, even outside of the appalling nuclear deal.

Lee Smith compiled a few Obama administration policy acts toward Iran in the Wall Street Journal yesterday:

… a 2008 article written by John Brennan—who went on to serve as White House counterterrorism adviser and Central Intelligence Agency director—advocated a grand bargain with Iran. In 2009 the Obama White House conducted secret negotiations with Tehran.

Mr. Obama later sidelined Project Cassandra, an investigation of illicit trafficking networks employed by Hezbollah, Iran’s Lebanese franchise. Launched in 2008, the investigation was run by a multiagency task force, including the FBI itself. Then for 18 months in 2014-15, the Obama White House gave the Iranians $700 million a month in sanctions relief. In January 2016, Mr. Obama sent Iran another $1.7 billion in cash. The administration also had a habit of leaking news of Israeli strikes on Iranian arms convoys and depots in Syria.

You might imagine that the Obama administration felt compelled to side with Iran, against Saudi Arabia, against Israel and against America… in order to appease the regime and to give it a path to acquiring nuclear weapons. Still and all… supporting the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism should have alerted newsrooms around the world. It did not… because Obama was their god and could do no wrong.

As for the human rights record of Iran, ignored by most of the world, the Guardian reports on Iran’s year of shame. It involved arresting dissidents, beating and shooting protesters. All told the regime was seriously involved in repressing dissent. Western Europe and the American media turned a blind eye on it all:

Iranian authorities arrested more than 7,000 dissidents last year in a sweeping crackdown that led to hundreds being jailed or flogged, at least 26 protesters being killed and nine people dying in custody amid suspicious circumstances, according to Amnesty International.

Those rounded up during violent dispersals of peaceful protests in what Amnesty called “a year of shame for Iran” included journalists, lawyers, minority rights activists and women who protested against being forced to wear headscarves.

Iranian authorities beat unarmed protesters and used live ammunition, teargas and water cannon throughout the year – particularly in January, July and August – with thousands arbitrarily arrested and detained, new figures assert.

“2018 will go down in history as a year of shame for Iran,” said Philip Luther, Amnesty International’s Middle East research and advocacy director.

“The staggering scale of arrests, imprisonments and flogging sentences reveal the extreme lengths the authorities have gone to in order to suppress peaceful dissent.

“From underpaid teachers to factory workers struggling to feed their families, those who have dared to demand their rights in Iran today have paid a heavy price.”

We have read the story of the women’s rights demonstrators who have been jailed in Saudi Arabia. We have not read the story of Iran’s repression of women’s rights protesters.

The Guardian continues:

He added: “Throughout 2018, the Iranian authorities waged a particularly sinister crackdown against women’s rights defenders. Governments which are engaged in dialogue with Iran must not stay silent while the net of repression rapidly widens.”

At least 112 women human rights defenders were arrested or remained in detention in Iran last year following sustained protests against compulsory veiling.  Women silently waved their headscarves on sticks in public, provoking a violent response and a number of “grossly unfair” trials that led to some being jailed.

So, those are the facts on the ground. When it comes to Iran the rest of the Western media and the Western European foreign policy establishment hears no evil, sees no evil and speaks no evil. After all, Iran is leading the march against Western civilization... with money provided by the Obama administration. Who could be against that?


Sam L. said...

The media are very good at not covering what they do NOT want to cover. I am surprised that the Grauniad is covering this.

"We have read the story of the women’s rights demonstrators who have been jailed in Saudi Arabia. We have not read the story of Iran’s repression of women’s rights protesters." (See first sentence above.)

UbuMaccabee said...

How much money did the Obama administration give to Iran so that they could murder Jews with it? How much of that money went to torture and murder their own people? How much of that money is in Syria and Yemen right now being used to kill people and destabilize any hint of civilization? How many lies were told, knowingly, by people like Susan Rice and Ben Rhodes, to get almost every Democrat to support this complete fiction that Iran was a rational actor, worse, a partner? I think the only reason Schumer caved is because Menachem Schneerson came to him in the middle of the night and told him his soul was doomed if he supported the give Iran billions to murder Jews deal. The most dishonest, low-down act in US foreign policy history. Shame on everyone who supported it in word or deed.