Sunday, August 12, 2012

Another Earthquake

I woke up to this image:

A couple hugging, dead, under the rubbles.

Another earthquake has shook Iran. The beautiful North West, Azerbaijan-e Sharghi. So far, about 250 are dead. I know how fast these numbers grow in Iran.

The first thing that comes to my mind is to send money to an NGO in Iran. But, the sanctions have made that impossible. The sanctions that have blocked the personal hard earned cash of my Iranian friends,  for instance in Azerbaijan, prohibit transferring money to Iran. A friend suggests, give money to someone abroad and have them pay the equal in cash to charities in Iran. Why should I? Like any immigrant, I should have the right to send a small portion of my income "back home". No?

On this thought, I cringe, and remember the last earthquake, where the "humanitarian" offer of Israel included sending their sniffer dogs to Iran. Iran refused help from both Israel and America.

In reality, Iran is NOT a poor country. According to CIA's factsheets, Iran's gold reserves ran 22nd in the world, only three behind the United States, and with a marginal difference. In purchasing power parity it ranks 18th; and in labor force 24th. However it's growth swamps it to 149th position, its inflation tops the chart, and its inductrial production growth rate has turned negative, BECAUSE it is kept in isolation, preventing its wealth to flourish, preventing it from becoming another India or China--something that the collective intellect and ambition of the country is well capable of; a capability that frightens the neighboring sand-despots, the geopolitical rival Israel, and the never fading greed of the anglo-franco-russian colonizers who never had their real chance in Iran. And of course, America being the empire built after occupation of the land and extermination of the aboriginals, and with slave's flesh, can just not survive without being the predator--UNTIL some true civilization, like China kicks its ass and forces some sense and modesty to its political/economic head. From the economic isolation of Iran, only Israel and Saudi Arabia gain. America too loses.


Besides economic "pride", Iran cannot TRUST any Israeli "search and rescue" team. Why should Iran not treat any Israeli as a potential spy? After all, don't Israeli's have the "hand-of-god" helping them assassinate the Iranian scientists on broad daylight and then boast about it on TV?  (Sometimes it seems like one hand of god is helping the Iranian regime, and the other hand the Israeli one! Except that when Iran wants to get rid of the Israeli regime it gets sanctioned, but when Israel uses the exact same words, it gets awarded more military goodies!)

On these thoughts, I "sense' a deep visceral hatred arousing in my gut about these sanctions, and the reason for them: effectively the cacophony of the AIPAC, aided by the particular brand of diplomatic chutzpa in the rhetoric of Ahmadinejad, and the Saudi Arabia's rivalry ... it takes a lot of restraint to not burst my hatred at Israel and America out before my little Jewish boy, who is enrolled in a Sunday Jewish school, who considers himself a Citizen of Israel (at the age of 11 and after only one trip), and who is afraid to step foot in a catholic church because he is afraid that if his Sunday school friends know, they will reject him. I fail; and I scream: I hate Israel, I hate this country where I am living and is sanctioning Iran, and I hate the fact that I am going to spend my money in the USA, vacationing with the rest of my family who is visiting from Iran!!

I am not proud of my visceral hatred; it is a knee jerk reaction in some ways. In bio-principle, I think humans, like animals, are not equipped with hatred; I think hatred is just a reaction to chronic FEAR when fight or flight ability is taken away by the mere fact of civilization. I suspect there are Israelis, Lebanese and Syrians who feel the same kind of chronic fear/hatred about Iranians. For sure, I have seen a lot of hatred against "Persian Arrogance" expressed towards Iranians by other persian speaking nationalities. It is in some ways, an inferiority complex in people who think their right at equality is stripped by unfair politics.
...

Yesterday, I visited the Peace Palace in den Haag: In the introduction to the history of International Court of Justice, it was stated that it was the invention of telegraph and photography that by bringing the reality of war to the people, forced a response, a pacifist response that rejected the previously glorified notions of honor, battle, dying a soldier.

Perhaps now, the introduction of these little diaries, blogs, facebook pages, where we can deconstruct "hatred" as it happens in each of us, we will develop a dialogue about that which separates us, that which frightens us, chronically, and turns us into aggressive nations/individuals ...
...
...
I am not crying any more. I am going to eat breakfast now; finish working; hug my Israeli boy and try to explain to him how unreasonable I behaved, and then pack up and fly to America where strangers hug me when they find me helpless in a medical clinic where my sisters infamous advance cancer verdict is delivered ... and yes, America has saved my sister ... and yes Iran HAS the right to nuclear science/technology and even a weapon ... but if we work together, against CHRONIC THREAT on other nations, none of these toys will be necessary any more ...

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

Dear Naj,

Reading your comment I noticed how unlike you i have become num to events. I feel no rage and no fear in these cases. I feel that may chage if Iran would become target of a military attack. By the way US exempted quake aid from Iran's sanctions list.

Short of a real military threat, when I witness foreign sanctions or internal abuses I react with a problem-solving mode. I ask myself is there anything I can do to make a difference. Some times the answer is yes and sometimes the answer is no.

It is obvious that at least in this piece part of your reaction manifests itself in writing angrily but elequently until the time you make peace with the circumstances temporarily. Although I have become num to such emotional rollercoasters I can understand them as I used to react like you in my past lives which the closest one seems to be light years away.

I have not become a better person by losing that emotive edge and fervor but I have become a different creature. Now I am wondering whether the change has been for worse. So far I have not reached that conclusion.

Anonymous said...

This regime has been barking "Death to America", "Death to Israel" from the very millisecond it came to power. If it weren't for Israel's destruction of the Iraqi nuclear facility in 1981 (something the IRI itself attempted in 1980 and failed to achieve), it would have faced a nuclear-armed Iraq. Israel has never occupied a single inch of Iranian territory. The IRI is perfectly willing to have close relations with Russia, which has historically conquered Iranian territories and has given away much of Iran's Caspian Sea rights to Russia. The conflict between the IRI and Israel is entirely of the IRI's doing since there are no territorial disputes between the two countries. What business is it of Iranians to want to "liberate" Qods? But, anti-Americanism and anti-Semitism (as seen in its Holocaust denial) is the basis of this regime. Unfortunately, "Death to America", "Death to Israel" habits are hard to break for certain people....

Anonymous said...

This regime has been barking "Death to America", "Death to Israel" from the very millisecond it came to power. If it weren't for Israel's destruction of the Iraqi nuclear facility in 1981 (something the IRI itself attempted in 1980 and failed to achieve), it would have faced a nuclear-armed Iraq. Israel has never occupied a single inch of Iranian territory. The IRI is perfectly willing to have close relations with Russia, which has historically conquered Iranian territories and has given away much of Iran's Caspian Sea rights to Russia. The conflict between the IRI and Israel is entirely of the IRI's doing since there are no territorial disputes between the two countries. What business is it of Iranians to want to "liberate" Qods? But, anti-Americanism and anti-Semitism (as seen in its Holocaust denial) is the basis of this regime. Unfortunately, "Death to America", "Death to Israel" habits are hard to break for certain people....

Anonymous said...

I'm still confused by the number of foreigners who move to America,and then express how much they despise the US. It seems that they might better choose a new land that matched their own righteousness.Welcome back,Ms Naj
bush_the_liberator

Naj said...

BTL

Since Americans have ALL walked just into someone else's land, (and have managed to also massacre those on whose land they have landed), I think America is one of those "free for all" kinds of a things!

The land of OPPORTUNITY, remember?

Anonymous said...

Dear Ms Naj, you have no problem living on the land of "massacred" people? I have a feeling you are not planning on leaving Occupied Amerikkka anytime soon?

goatman said...

I am always amazed when people build their brick, mud, or stone structures in an earthquake zone and then are surprised when the walls fall down and kill them.
A simple lookout as to natural possibility would save lives.
Of course the money must go to nuclear weapons first.

Naj said...

BLT,
I have not taken my bite of the pie yet; although some universities in your country would like me to! For now, I am just spending my money as a good ideal tourist in America!

Naj said...

Goatman,

What has happened to you my friend; your comments are increasingly biased and uninformed.

1) Iran is not spending the money on nuclear weapons. If it has military expenditure, it is justified to do so, thanks to YEARS of your country's meddling in the region; and years of threats made by your country and its allies.

2) People who build homes do not necessarily think of natural disasters. These things don't knock on the door. Unlike Japan, Iran doesn't have an earth quake every week! Iran is a vast country; and earth quakes hit every now and again; and often surprisingly. This is a land that has been occupied for over 7000 years; and earthquakes may be centuries apart in one region.

3) People are never surprised when the earthquakes kill them. Actually, I have lived quite a few >6 richter earthquakes; and fully aware of the dangers, I have continued living in the same house. We are not quite as controlly about nature as the western cultures are. We accept that living in nature has risks. Don't Los Angelesians know that their houses are in danger of the big-one? don't many American mansions fall to landslides with every rain? Didn't tsunamic massacre in Japan? Broaden yoru horizon and your mind a little!

4) Why do you assume Iranian governments are NOT trying to address the earthquake issue? They have plans that assist the Iranian villagers to replace their mudbrick homes with earquake-safe structures. bu these things take TIME. First you have to convince people to change their ways of life; you have to convince them safely matters--to many Iranians it doesn't! Iranians don't wear seat-belts either (although it is enforced by the government); they find ways of not doing so; and as a result Iran has a very high rate of car fatalities per year.

5) The "crippling" sanctions that people like you support, because they are naive and brainwashed that Iran is making nuclear weapons and is dangerous, are also depriving the IRanian government of funds that allow people build earthquake-safe homes. The same ones are killing people in old airplanes. Is there any part of your righteous mind that feels guilty?

goatman said...

There is, and I donot support the sanctions. I feel that the Iranian government has the same right as any other governmnent to blow the hell out of all of us in a quest for supremacy and control.
You are right about human nature though. Live knowing the risks and be surprised when they occur.

On a lighter note: Do you have any interesting recipies for Haleem?

nunya said...

This is a beautiful post. Thanks hon.

ps, you know I don't believe that sanctions hurt those in power don't you?

They only hurt the most vulnurable and that makes me sad.

Fleming said...

I completely agree with everything you have said so eloquently in support of Iran and against the U.S. and Israel. The sanctions against Iran are a disgrace and a crime. It frustrates me as one born in the U.S. that I have no means but words to fight against the sanctions and the war-threats against Iran, and that my words are ineffective in comparison to the power of AIPAC and Zionist money. It is terrible to sit and watch, helpless, crimes taking place and crimes in the making.

Thank you for your wonderful blog!

Fleming

Anonymous said...

So!

Now you finally realized that US and EU want to destroy your country and they do not care one whit about the Iranian people.

Good, there might still be hope for you.

Goatman:

There are 40,000 villages in Iran. It will take centuries to rebuild the houses of villagers with reinforced concrete.

People have had no choices in their construction techniques and materials for thousands of years.

Naj said...

Pen,

I ALWAYS knew that; except that when the leaders of my country started supporting the enemies within; I decided to run to the lesser evil!! :)

goatman said...

Mr. Anon with no name: Reinforced concrete is not the answer. But wood and "givable" walls and roofs are needed. I am surprised that the stone structures have lasted this long .