Terry Glavin: Rethinking Iran
Posted: July 24, 2009, 4:30 PM by NP Editor

Where is the Iranian uprising headed, and what can we do to help it along?

Homa Arjomand is heading up an international campaign to close down Iranian embassies, freeze the bank accounts of the Tehran regime's leaders, expel the Islamic Republic from all international agencies, and prosecute the regime's leaders for their crimes against humanity.

The campaign is based on several propositions: The regime is directly responsible for terrorizing people in Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Algeria, Palestine, and "even in the heart of Europe and North America." It not only imposes reactionary laws on the Iranian people, but carries out assassinations of Iranian dissidents abroad, It furthers its foreign policy by sustaining terrorism and maintaining national, ethnic and religious splits and tensions throughout the Middle East, through beheadings, mutilations, and planting bombs in buses, cafés and discotheques.

Bringing down the regime in Tehran "is a prerequisite for demolishing political Islam as a movement," says Arjomand. "Without the Islamic Republic of Iran, political Islam will become a trivial and insignificant opposition in the Middle East."

 Arjomand's campaign goes farther than former federal justice minister Irwin Cotler's proposal - he's been arguing for it for some while - in today's National Post. Cotler has been hoping for some traction in his call to have the Ahmedinejad regime called to account for violating the United Nations' prohibition against incitement to genocide. In today's Post, Cotler is calling for an Iran Accountability Act to focus Canadian and international attention "not only on Iran's nuclear program, but also on its domestic repression and genocidal incitement." Such a law would mean a bar on business with certain Iranian industries. It could cut off Iran from imported gasoline, for instance.

Tarek Fatah argues for a serious reappraisal of the way the regime is comprehended in the west, here. As is obvious from my observations here, I'm of the view that taking our obligations seriously in the matter of the Iranian uprising is going to be an uphill battle in Canada. Nazanin Afshin-jam agrees it's time to get serious: "Freedom-loving nations should press for an emergency UN Human Rights Council session and international commission of inquiry to investigate Iran's grave human rights abuses, and demand the immediate release of all political prisoners. Nations with strong trade relations should refrain from appeasing Iran for short-term economic gain. Travel bans and asset freezes should be imposed upon Iranian officials."

Meanwhile, Fred Halliday presents a helpful analysis on the meaning of the Iranian uprising:

"In the same way that Lenin and the Bolsheviks pushed aside not only their Czarist opponents, but also Russian liberals, social-revolutionaries and Mensheviks, so Khomeini and his associates set out to monopolise the post-revolutionary state and extinguish both their political rivals and the very memory of their contribution to a history that belongs to all Iranians. It is the great contribution of the brave citizens of Iran who took to the streets in June 2009, and affirmed their rights in peaceful and dignified fashion, to have reclaimed this truth.

"Their demonstrations thus have opened a door to Iran's past as well as the future. Another slogan of the epic popular tide of 1978-79 - marg bar fascism, marg bar irtija (death to fascism, death to reaction) - may yet combine with the marg bar dictator of the marches of 2009 in a way that heralds the end of the demagogic clique that now rules Iran. The people of Iran, and their friends and admirers the world over, can only hope that this day comes sooner rather than later."

National Post

Journalist, author and blogger Terry Glavin is an adjunct professor of creative writing at the University of British Columbia and editor of Transmontanus Books. He was awarded the 2009 B.C. Lieutenant-Governor's Award for Literary Excellence.

Photo Members of the Iranian revolutionary guards shout anti-Israel and anti-U.S. slogans as Iranian cleric Ahmad Khatami delivers the weekly Friday prayer sermon at Tehran University (ATTA KENARE/AFP/Getty Images)

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by Blazingcatfur
Jul 24 2009
5:51 PM

But Terry according to our resident Islamist Zafar Bangash it is we in the west who are human rights abusers:

"the United States, Canada, France, Germany and so on they have passed laws that make it very difficult for Muslims even to express their legitimate political rights. And, in fact, these countries have given vast new powers to their police forces and their intelligence agencies to violate the rights of Muslims and minorities."

www.siasatrooz.ir/CNewsRDetail.aspx

by ZeeBC
Jul 24 2009
8:12 PM

79% of Americans think that a nuclear armed Iran will provide a bomb to terrorists to destroy a American city.  100% of Iranians better take notice and make sure their affairs are in order.

by rvandi
Jul 25 2009
2:41 AM

woah, woah, woah, although as an Iranian I completely support their uprising in everyway...PLEASE PLEASE, this peace of article is propaganda! Please do not take advantage of this uprising in Iran to say that Iran he regime is directly responsible for terrorizing people in Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Algeria, Palestine, and "even in the heart of Europe and North America." For god's sakes, it was the russians and american's that screwed afghanistan, iraq, and it is your canada forces in Afghanistan that are making people's lives miserable although u guys seem to think it will bring utopia! This peace is PROPAGANDA! ANd it is taking advantage of what is happening to Iran to further an ultra-conservative WESTERN Agenda, shame on you National Post and Terry Glavin.

by Blazingcatfur
Jul 25 2009
9:37 AM

"The national post is a modern day Der Stürmer”

And you're a modern day useful idiot.

by Mambo Bananapatch
Jul 25 2009
10:16 AM

Godwin's Law!

Can't actually form a coherent argument, invoke Nazis/Hitler... yawn.

> The national post is a modern day Der Stürmer”

How embarrassing for you. To know so little of history, and to display your ignorance with such pride. Actually, it's kind of embarrassing that you're not embarrassed.

I imagine most of the people reading this don't need to have the difference between Der Sturmer and the National Post explained to them.

From Wikipedia:

"In his propaganda work, Streicher furthered old myths from the middle ages, e.g. that Jews killed children, sacrificed them and drank their blood. These claims were accompanied by vulgar anti-semitic caricatures. Der Stürmer featured cartoons which portrayed Jews as ugly characters with exaggerated facial features and misshapen bodies."

en.wikipedia.org/.../Der_Sturmer

Sounds just like the NP, eh, phatti? Perhaps you really can't tell the difference.

by phatti
Jul 25 2009
3:52 PM

mambo

you mean cartoons like these ones.

www.nationalpost.com/.../index.html

by phatti
Jul 25 2009
4:07 PM

Did Europe or for that fact the allies address the genocide against the Gypsy, were they ever mentioned at Nuremberg, the roma extermination was never addressed by anyone, the forgotten genocide, how can anyone claim that these people have been treated fairly by the white race. They are portrayed as liars and thieves.

by phatti
Jul 25 2009
4:14 PM

Let us pose a question to the crusaders for press freedom. Suppose, on Martin Luther King Day last month, a daily newspaper in Birmingham, Alabama had published a derogatory and racist cartoon of the murdered civil rights leader—something that could only serve to legitimize the revival of racial stereotyping and repression.

Suppose further, that this provocative cartoon resulted in angry and even violent protest demonstrations, and that, in “solidarity,” major daily newspapers in the United States proclaimed it their duty to defend “press freedom” by reprinting the overtly racist cartoon on their front pages? What would be the reaction of those who are today lining up behind the right-wing provocateurs in the name of “press freedom”?

In the heyday of the civil rights struggles of the 1960s, American newspapers outside the South would, on occasion, take note of such stereotypes in the Southern press as proof of the ingrained racism of the entire Southern ruling elite. Today, by contrast, press barons are lined up in defense of a right-wing racist provocation against the Muslim population of Western Europe, whose conditions of life, including poverty, job discrimination, housing segregation, police harassment and denial of democratic rights, greatly resemble those of black Americans in the old South.

There is no more “democratic” value in the anti-Muslim cartoons than in the Holocaust-denying screeds of anti-Semitic British author David Irving. But today, as Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul observed aptly, hostility against Muslims has replaced anti-Semitism as a staple of the European and American press.

by Ascalepius
Jul 25 2009
4:47 PM

Comparing Jews to Muslims as examples of scapegoating for society's ills is rather stretching it.

Jews walking into markets in Germany did not spontaneously combust killing innocent bystanders; they were not attacking the society that they found themselves in, trying to impose their moral values on the citizenry around them or trying to undermine the state.

Herr Hitler and his right wing socialist movement needed an enemy to focus all the frustrations of the Germanic people so to unite them into a totalitarian movement and to rationalize the loss of WWI which was ascribed to 'the Jews'.

The German people were the herrenvolk and the rest of the world populated by untermenchen, subhumans which included the Roma..the Slavs...and every other non Aryan.

The Muslims have not been scapegoated for the economic problems in the world as were/are the Jews...but it is an unfortunate fact that just as Herr Hitler believed that there was a superior race with all the rest inferior who could be eradicated , so there are Islamists who believe that their belief system is superior to all others...and that non believers could be dealt with in a similar manner.

The fact that air travel has become as inconvenient as it is today can be directly attributed to the god inebriates who kill and die for the greater glory of their deity...and the 72 virgins of course.

by phatti
Jul 25 2009
5:29 PM

In the twenty-first century, in a time when mankind knows better, nations and corporations seeking political or economic power still frequently seek to unite against a common perceived enemy. Where once there was imagined to be a Jewish conspiracy there is now an Empire of Evil, where there were Reds under the Beds, there are now fundamentalist Muslims in the basement.

by Terry86
Jul 26 2009
12:21 AM

Phatti--There were Reds under Beds, and there are Muslims in the basement.  There used to be two towers in New York, and a whole lot of people who worked in them are no longer with us.

by rexx1
Jul 26 2009
1:35 AM

"The regime is directly responsible for terrorizing people in Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Algeria, Palestine, and "even in the heart of Europe and North America.""

Really don't get that one. There's bending the truth and there's fear mongering and then there's full on propaganda. I must of missed that story about those Iranian aircraft carriers and battle groups massed on our borders ready to shock and awe us into submission.

Nothing wrong with being wary about someone, because of my family history and where I grew up, I will always be wary of the USA, but to cower in fear and to get into histrionics is just silly and a little pathetic.

Another Iranian revolution is in the works, best thing we can do is step back and let the people of Iran handle their own business.

"Bringing down the regime in Tehran "is a prerequisite for demolishing political Islam as a movement," says Arjomand. "Without the Islamic Republic of Iran, political Islam will become a trivial and insignificant opposition in the Middle East.""

Ever been to Saudi Arabia? Nothing trivial or insignificant about how oppressive that country is. All this fear mongering over Iran, yet one of the nastiest countries on Earth gets a free pass.

Weird

by Kouhr
Jul 26 2009
2:07 AM

"There used to be two towers in New York, and a whole lot of people who worked in them are no longer with us." - Tony86

Except of course the Israelis who were told not to go to work in the building that day.

Of course the 5 Mossad agents who were filming the act at the time were on the job, and jumping for joy over the strike.

Odd. Isn't it?

by Kouhr
Jul 26 2009
2:13 AM

"Jews walking into markets in Germany did not spontaneously combust killing innocent bystanders" - Ascalepius

Correct. After planting their bombs the Jews who planted them tried to escape the blast before it occurred.

"they were not attacking the society that they found themselves in, trying to impose their moral values on the citizenry around them or trying to undermine the state."  - Ascalepius

Look up Stern Gang and learn how the Shamir the Prime Minister of Israel planted terrorist bombs in Lebanon for the purpose of murdering U.N. officials prior the Israel's unilateral self declaration as a state.

"Herr Hitler and his right wing socialist movement needed an enemy to focus all the frustrations of the Germanic people so to unite them into a totalitarian movement and to rationalize the loss of WWI which was ascribed to 'the Jews'." - Ascalepius

Which is exactly what Hitlerite Bush required to commit his war crimes.

by Kouhr
Jul 26 2009
2:18 AM

What Rvandi does not understand is that Conservative Rags like the National Post exist for the purpose of promoting hate, and disseminating lies.

After all, that is what Conservatism is all about.

"This peace is PROPAGANDA! ANd it is taking advantage of what is happening to Iran to further an ultra-conservative WESTERN Agenda, shame on you National Post and Terry Glavin." - Rvandi

by phatti
Jul 26 2009
2:19 AM

so what Terry

Fifty million died in ww2. three thousand died in the world trade center, what are we looking for, sainthood for the victims. It was carried out by sixteen Saudis not the Iraqis nor the Taliban. It was a criminal act no doubt, but you can hardly paint one point three billion people with the same brush. All you can do is apply the law against the perpetrators, , but as they perished in the attack it's a mute point. If they caught Osama do you think that would satisfy the Americans. Or do they want to use the 911 tragedy to justify war against Muslims until we wipe everyone one of them off the map. What will it take to bring peace, will America continue collective punishment against woman and children until the ones responsible surrender. I doubt that, if they were callous enough to carry out the attack on the WTC they wouldn't have any concerns for innocents caught up in the battle.I have no problem with defending oneself, but to lash out wildly with no concern for innocents around you makes you as guilty as the perpetrators.

Secondly I don't hold the Americans completely innocent of provoking the Muslims, they have been players on the world stage for a long time, I don't know the logic behind the WTC attacks, whether it really is a holy war for placing American troops in saudi arabia, I don't think anyone knows, but I do know that America has made enemies world wide and have been instrumental in toppling regimes, assassination, betrayal of allies, and so on, and if you are prepared to take those steps you can hardly not expect to meet with resistance. The WTC was collateral damage, and no amount of revenge will bring back the victims.

I am also aware that America has fabricated incidents as justification for hostilities, the gulf of Tonkin incident for one. I was also a soldier and if you fell asleep at the switch you ran the risk of not waking up.  I would be asking who was in charge of security, who wasn't vigilent in their duty to protect their citizens. Its not called guard duty for nothing. America has been fighting one war or another for hundreds of years now, its in their blood, and every once in a while they get there nose bloodied

America has been wrong more than once, I was in Alabama in the sixties.

by Kouhr
Jul 26 2009
2:20 AM

"Moslems have NO "political rights"." - Conservative Racist WellDoneSon

It occurs to me that moslems have the same political rights as any other person in any of the first world nations.

And that fact angers Conservative Racists.

by Kouhr
Jul 26 2009
2:23 AM

Oh, look.  Another Factoid pulled out of ZeeBC's Rascist Conservative backside.

I have never encountered a Conservative who wasn't a congenital and perpetual liar.

ZeeBC is no exception.

"79% of Americans think that a nuclear armed Iran will provide a bomb to terrorists to destroy a American city." - ZeeBC

by Kouhr
Jul 26 2009
2:26 AM

The one Million dead Iraqi civilians killed by the Failed American State  over the last 7 years would agree with him as would the tens of thousands who died under the american agent Saddam Hussein.

"But Terry according to our resident Islamist Zafar Bangash it is we in the west who are human rights abusers" - BlazingCatFur

by phatti
Jul 26 2009
2:47 AM

In private life, an adult who keeps beating down on a five year old—even such a one as originally attacked him with a knife—will be perceived as committing a crime; therefore he will lose the support of bystanders and end up by being arrested, tried and convicted. In international life, an armed force that keeps beating down on a weaker opponent will be seen as committing a series of crimes; therefore it will end up by losing the support of its allies, its own people, and its own troops. Depending on the quality of the forces—whether they are draftees or professionals, the effectiveness of the propaganda machine, the nature of the political process, and so on—things may happen quickly or take a long time to mature. However, the outcome is always the same. He (or she) who does not understand this does not understand anything about war; or, indeed, human nature.

by ZeeBC
Jul 26 2009
3:23 AM

"I have never encountered a Conservative who wasn't a congenital and perpetual liar."

>> An obvious racist bigoted falsehood.

""79% of Americans think that a nuclear armed Iran will provide a bomb to terrorists to destroy a American city." - ZeeBC"

>> Cant argue with facts unless you are a demented dipstick.

by Kouhr
Jul 26 2009
3:36 AM

"I have never encountered a Conservative who wasn't a congenital and perpetual liar." - ZeeBC

That's funny because I have made the exact same observation.

by rexx1
Jul 26 2009
3:43 AM

79% of Americans think that a nuclear armed Iran will provide a bomb to terrorists to destroy a American city." - ZeeBC

It's fortunate for Iran that 79% of Americans can't find Iran on a map.

;)

by Kouhr
Jul 26 2009
3:44 AM

I had no idea that Conservatives constituted their own "race".

Tell us more about your KookFart Conservatie racial beliefs ZeeBC.

"An obvious racist bigoted falsehood." - ZeeBC

   

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