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Mariam told me only one thing about Iran and that was “What you see on television is not Iran”.  So on and off for almost two decades, I researched the relationship between the US and Iran. I have tried to condense this relationship here. There are three things you should get from this page: 1. our history with Iran; 2. the Iranian people are voting their way to a more progressive society; and 3. a step toward a peace. 

  • The US/Iranian history begins most significantly in the 1940s but 1953 is most important. Watch either of these two trailers.  Yes, we the United States over threw Iran's Democratically elected president.  You can also read “All the Shah’s Men” "Understanding Iran"and the “Persian Prince” but you will come to the same conclusion. 

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  • The Shah of Iran has always been characterized as a close ally of the US.  President Carter stated, while on a visit to Iran, the Shah was  a "symbol of peace and stability” in the Middle East and a cherished ally of the United States.  Watch this PBS special on Jimmy Carter and skip to the part about the Shah - Jimmy Carter - American experience. His aids say, “we blew it”. In short, the Shah, at the time of Carter's visit, had evolved into ruthless dictator but he had cancer. The citizens  knew it was just a matter of time until they would be free of the man the killed and imprisoned Iranian people (admittedly, historians differ on the overall impact the Shah had on Iran). The second major impact we had with the Iranian people happen a week after Carter’s visit. They were hoping the "human rights President Carter" would have condemned the Shah. That did not happen. What happened seven days after Carter's visit set the stage for the next four decades. Rather than wait for cancer, the Shah was ousted and Iran became a theocracy/democracy. If you want a synopsis of the history watch the middle third of this nine minute video. Another superb book is, "The Eagle and the Lion". This book will bring your to the 1980s. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • The thing I hear Americans talk about most about Iran is the hostages. There was actually a discussion on Capitol Hill about Yemen/Houtis and one congressman mentioned "the Houtis are back by Iran and Iran took our hostages. IF you want to know just how stupid that is, watch the following video.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • NOW, for the really important part. I find it interesting that the Theocrats established a government that is a blend of democracy and theocracy. Frankly, I give them far more credit than many people do. The Supreme Leader can actually be ousted by the people. Is it likely to happen??? The current government structure allows for a performance review of the Supreme Leader every six months and he can be ousted based upon that review. I can think of a heck of a lot of Americans that would like that option after Trump was elected. 

  • There is an ongoing struggle in Iran. Keep in mind that seventy percent of Iranians are under the age of 40 and sixty percent are under 30.  In 1979, the democratic component of Iran's government has a parliament made up of 178 clerics, Today there are 16 clerics. And there are 17 women. Look at the democratic component of Iran's government as the heart of the vast majority of Iranians. When the nuclear deal was signed that heart grew three sizes that day. Iranians danced in the streets when that deal was signed. That heart has been getting bigger every year. I believe the government will evolve just like all governments BUT it is up to Iranians to decide how it is to evolve. The only thing hurting that evolution is the United States. Thru banning Iranians, thru sanctions, thru tearing up the nuclear deal we are doing nothing more than empowering the one group of Iranians over another group. The bottom line is I wish my country would allow the people of Iran to decide their own fate and keep their fingers out of the country. We have done enough harm to the people of Iran. 

  • The current Nuclear Deal did more than destroy centrifuges, get rid of stockpiles of enriched uranium and have concrete poured into a nuclear reactor. That was but a MINOR component. The Deal formed a bridge over a crevasse created by America in 1953.  That bridge (it is extremely important to understand this) was built on the success of individual Iranians voting themselves toward a more progressive society.  What is most difficult for me is that under this media barrage that holistically paints Iran as a bunch of fanatics dressed in black, there is no mention of the progress a vast majority of the 80 million people have made..  Of all the available sources of information about what has happened in the last twenty years, I would invite you to check this link - http://www.iranprimer.com/ .

  • Iranians are undertaking an evolution as opposed to a revolution. There is a signal the US needs to send to the Iranian people and that is we support whatever course you decide.  BUT, we need to make damn sure we never ever impede the flow of medicines and medical supplies to the Iranian people. We need to make that right. And we need to rethink our efforts to constrain commercial exchanges with, as Trump and Nentanyahu both described, "the beautiful people of Iran". Flood Iran with commerce and you help the 71 million Iranians that desire better relations with the west (Huffinton Post January 7, 2017). 

 

 

I admire the people of Iran who, given our history with them, still want to invited us into their homes. My Mariam was absolutely right. The Iran you see in the media is not Iran. It took me just a short time to realize that. But, and this is the most heart breaking part of this story, the Iranian people still directly suffer and I pray that the information you gather in this website will accurately paint this truly sad picture. We could finally make things right. We can that by doing exactly what we, as American, would want others to treat us. We would not like it if another country was trying to determine our future. Look at how we react when there is even a hint as that Russia might be influencing us. We need to treat other countries the same way. Treat  all other countries as we would have them treat us. It is time we start treating Iran and the beautiful people of Iran the same way. And, it is time to tell the Iranian people we are sorry. 

 

BBC Documentary