Iran needs to prove times have changed
Published: Thursday, October 10, 2013
Updated: Thursday, October 10, 2013 10:10
United States foreign policy has rapidly shifted gaze from the war in Syria to Iran.
This shift was caused by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani’s recent call to the White House. This was the first contact between the leadership of the two nations since the hostage crisis in 1979.
While this call was meant to create a better relationship between the two nations, this news should be taken with a grain of salt.
President Rouhani recently refused to visit President Obama, instead calling Obama on the telephone and talking through a translator for only 15 minutes.
The phone call hinted Iran wanted to start making negotiations concerning their nuclear research, but no promises were made. Iran seeks trust where it has been void for years.
Iran’s atrocities have been many since the revolution that established its government in 1979. The United States lists Iran as a state sponsor of terrorism, funneling weapons, money, and other aid to organizations such as Hamas, Hezbollah and Al-Qaeda.
After world sanctions wereplaced on Iran last year, because their refusal to disclose information about their nuclear program, Iran was connected to a string of cyber-terrorist attacks on private oil companies throughout the region.
During the war between Iraq and Iran in the 1980s, Iran used children in warfare as both soldiers as well as human minesweepers. It is estimated that around 95,000 children died serving in this conflict.
As recent as July of last year, Iran has been connected to deadly acts of terror. The July 2012 bombing in New Delhi, India was performed not by a terrorist group, but by a wing of the Iranian military, The Iranian Revolutionary Guard.
Some may argue that Iran’s extremist days are behind her with the recent election of the moderate president Hassan Rouhani, but this is not true on multiple accounts.
Rouhani is not as moderate as he claims to be. Supreme Leader Khomeini appointed Rouhani as deputy commander of war during the war between Iraq and Iran.
Rouhani has been a member of the upper echelons of the combatant regime ever since. When asked by American reporters whether he believed the Holocaust occurred, Rouhani replied “I am not a historian; I am a politician.”
Even if Rouhani is moderate, he holds very little power. The government of Iran is a Theocracy, and all presidential candidates are screened by the supreme leader.
While a sustained peace with Iran is an honorable goal, Iran needs to gain the trust of the world community before sanctions can be lifted.
Full disclosure of Iran’s nuclear facility is a mandatory step in earning this trust. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said it best when he said we need to beware of a “wolf in sheep’s clothing.”
While Rouhani appears to be trying to make amends, it is imperative that we see through any façades.