13 April 2007

Meddling in Iraq

The Americans, it seems, are mightily annoyed at what they refer to as Iran's "meddling" in Iraq. Iran, they claim, is providing Shia, and possibly Sunni, militias with equipment and training.

Let's get this straight. The U.S. has precipitated a state of bloody chaos in Iraq that has cost hundreds of thousands of lives, created millions of refugees, and leaves most Iraqis living in a state of constant fear -- and they accuse the Iranians of meddling?

Whose backyard is this anyway? The Americans are fighting wars on Iran's eastern and western borders, and they expect the Iranians to sit idly by and observe? Of course they won't. This is their turf and they will defend their interests, just as the U.S. has always done in the Americas. In Latin and South America, the Americans' backyard, they have persistently interfered in the affairs of other nations, even going so far as to overthrow democratic governments and replace them with more amenable dictatorships, a step well beyond anything Iran has ever done. This does not, of course, justify Iran interfering in the affairs of other states in the Middle East, but Iran's involvement in the Levant and Iraq is largely a response to aggression by Israel, the United States and other Western powers. Meddling as a response to meddling, one might say -- no Monroe Doctrine here. If the Americans can extend their reach to the other side of the world and wage bloody war, they are not on very solid ground to criticize Iran for supporting its local allies.

The Americans have made their hostility to Iran abundantly clear for a long time. The Iranians will quite reasonably do what is in their limited power to alleviate this threat and send the American meddlers home.

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