The following is a comment by the information clearing house. I have not sought the permission of the commentator to cross post, but there is something very fresh in this perspective which I endorse (and color-code! )
* Nikogda kindly dropped by and left his blog address
Language is the clothing of thought, and how the Iranian president used it in New York this week cloaks an entire tactical line.
The comportment of the president of the Islamic Republic of Iran during his recent visit to the United States, as well as the content of his discourse, are setting a standard of enlightened statecraft that is evidently lacking among the leaders of the U.S. and its most toadying "allies" from the Anglo-American bloc (UK, Canada, Australia etc.)
For decades the Anglo-American powers all prided themselves and patted one another on the back over their superior ability to "manage change". Then in 1979 the Iranian people rose up and had the temerity to get rid of the Anglo-Americans' most sacred totem, Shah Reza Pahlavi and his Asian-fascist "Peacock Throne". Ever since that epochal event, the situation for the Anglo-Americans in western Asia has gone from bad to worse. Specifically in Canada, no opportunity to smear the Iranian revolution has been overlooked.
Over the past year, for example, a political science professor, Shiraz Dossa of St Francis Xavier University, has been demonised in the national media for the crime of attending the last conference in Teheran about the European Judeocide. John Ibbitson — the former Washington correspondent of Canada 's leading national newspaper, The Globe and Mail in Toronto — practically foamed at the mouth like some rabid animal. He raged that Dr Dossa's derring-do cried out for some kind of redress. Perhaps a body to police Canadian academia so such cancers can't recur once they have been put into remission by an alerted university administration might be created, or the criminal code amended?
Ibbitson's idiocies recall to mind the crazed member of the Canadian Senate, Raoul Dandurand, back in the 1920s. In the interwar years following the First and preceding the Second World War, this individual was in love with Canada becoming a neocolony not just of Great Britain but of the United States as well. He enthused in public about how Canada was now "a fireproof house... free from inflammable materials".
That period of so-called "peace" was a time in which the British were exterminating the Irish nmational movement on a mass scale. The British government schemed to suffocate the Ataturk government in Turkey that had replaced the corrupt and moribund Ottoman caliphate. At this time, Canada's peaceable American neighbours were sending in the Marines repeatedly to murder the peoples of Haiti, Nicaragua, and elsewhere in the hemisphere. The US oil barons stopped at nothing — including political murders, bribery and corruption as well as invasion threats — to prevent the Mexican government's inevitable nationalisation of the country's oil. According to research published by Floyd Rudmin, the US Army was even planning the full-scale invasion and takeover of Canada.
Today, for the US and its toadying allies including the servile columnists of the corporate media, the room for such smugness and complacency among the ruling classes in Canada or any of the other Anglo-American countries has disappeared. Today, themost dangerously "inflammable material" is contemporary reality itself, with its daily proofs that Western global supremacy led by the Anglo-Americans cannot last forever.
Another world is possible and indeed necessary — but how to get there? World wars and genocides are not preferred methods. It is one thing if the imperial overlords compel the peoples fighting for liberation to turn the devastation of a world war or genocide to the account of the liberation struggle. However, this is certainly not the first choice of those fighting for social and national liberation. Some enormous disaster need not befall humanity first before anyone liberates their country from the yoke of empire. Averting such disasters is possible with enlightened statecraft. This seems to be objective #1 on the Iranian president's agenda.
With regard to enlightened statecraft, President Ahmadinejad sets a certain standard, and from a number of angles. He shares none of the bourgeois hangups of his Western imperial interlocutors and opponents. As a result, he comes across as apparently fearless. This always inspires confidence among those who want to see the imperial overlords brought down a peg or two.
No one was expecting a knockout punch at either the Columbia University engagement or the CBS 60 Minutes interview. However, what emerged there was better than a knockout bid. President Ahmadinejad's statecraft involved playing defence. However, it was a defence that upholds the Iranian nation's right-to-be by undermining the capabilities of the offence (led by the U.S.) to continue the offensive against the Iranian nation's right-to-be. Well... the Persians *are* one of the inventors of chess, no?
President Ahmadinejad builds a position on the basis of clearly articulated principle. Then, against the assault attempts of his opponents citing or hurling this detail or that detail against his wall of principle, he defends by reasserting the principle. The resulting drama of this confrontation serves to impress the principle on the listener-viewer. This is what gradually undermines any latent sympathy for the upholders of Western values etc.
It is brilliantly subversive. A friend of ours who was one of his students at Tehran University affirms that he is an inspired teacher. What has proven particularly stunning, however, are the effects of his style on North American audiences. No one can remember the last time any leader waged struggle for a political line in this manner.
On his last visit to New York City, when he accepted an invitation into the lion's den of the Council of Foreign Relations, he literally wiped the floor with those guys. The only individuals still bleating and babbling after he was done there were partisans of a certain notorious gang installed as a U.S.-backed junta on land stolen from the Palestinians on the shores of the eastern Mediterranean. Unsurprisingly, these are the partisans who are back once again for more punishment, spearheading the latest attempted public lynching of the Iranian president in New York City.
The first principle of the Islamic Republic's statecraft is the independence of the Iranian nation from foreign domination or subjugation. The first principle of the US-led bloc of imperial states is the unity and solidarity of their bloc. What is especially cunning is President Ahmadinejad's pitting of his government's first principle against the first principle of the US-led bloc. In this confrontation, it always emerges that the loudly proclaimed, allegedly "civilised values" of the US-led bloc are only rhetorical cover. What they= members of that bloc really have in mind are ruthlessly hegemonic schemes. Some scjemes entail the bankrupting of entire swaths of the global economy; other schemes envision invasions and occupations without end indefinitely into the future.
These are interimperialist contradictions. They are irrepressible. It eventually emerges further that the various members of the bloc proclaiming their vaunted unity around these "civilised values" are actually at one another's throats — over who gets to call the shots.
The Iranian President's approach serves to bring these contradictions back to the surface. When this happens, it simultaneously also deepens the contradictions in the ranks of the leaders of the US-led bloc, even as it alienates any remaining sympathies among the peoples of those countries for the stance of their government and their so-called "allies". If you doubt it, just look at the brouhaha that followed French foreign minister Bernard Kouchner's bloodthirsty imprecations against the Islamic Republic almost two weeks ago.
Interestingly, the Iranian president headed straight to Bolivia and then Venezuela to strengthen relations with two more countries, in the Americas and not in Asia, that can no longer tolerate peaceful coexistence under the Yankee jackboot. And what comes in today's news but word from the United Nations the permanent members of the Security Council — including the U.S., Britain and France — have decided that they cannot touch the "Iran question" again until November at the earliest. In short: a dignified victory for the policy of refusing to bend on fundamental principles such as the independence of the country for which the people shed their blood. Like the best tailor — or the richest tradition — among truly civilised people, the Iranians measured the cloth seven times or more before their President cut it.