Nineteen seventy-nine was a momentous year. In my little world, college graduation was celebrated with enthusiasm and zeal. In the world at large, the Iranian revolution occurred – and wreaked havoc and destruction in ways neither the Iranians nor the rest of the world could have ever imagined.
At the time, being an educated and low-information voter, as we know they are synonymous, I paid little attention to these circumstances except to understand that the Shah and his secret police, the Savak, were deposed; a medieval-looking, menacing ayatollah took over the country; and Americans were held hostage, eventually being released.
Fast-forward several years. Glimpses of this backward country were revealed through various media. The movie Not Without My Daughter revealed the riveting account of an American woman married to an Iranian and her attempts and eventual success in escaping the hellhole where she found herself. Geraldine Brooks’s fabulous book, Nine Parts of Desire, about women of the Middle East, also offered a picture of life for women in Iran. The fatwa declared by Ayatollah Khomeini on Salman Rushdie, forcing him into hiding, became worldwide news. The Iranian film festival was brought to the United States on an annual basis exposing many of us to the inner workings of Iranian society and their yearning for a freer way of life. We came to discover that the Iranians, including women, next to the Israelis, were some of the most educated people in the Middle East.
Like many of the readers of these pages who have become more informed – call it a true education – I learned the truth about the repercussions of the Iranian revolution. Jimmy Carter’s naïve and dangerous proclamations against the Shah, a U.S. ally, were the fuel that ignited the Shah’s overthrow. Investors Business Daily had a wonderful piece in the mid-2000s summarizing the hideous consequences. The Shah’s executions over twenty-five years were less than those under Ayatollah Khomeini’s in one year. The ayatollah, purported religious man that he was, supported Hamas, the Palestinian terrorist organization, and promised to fund families of suicide bombers attacking Israel. Hezb’allah (Party of God), a Lebanese Shiite terrorist organization, originated because of a radical Iran. People suffered gravely under this regime. In the book Children of Paradise by Laura Secor, there is a section that chronicles the events surrounding the mass executions of political prisoners during the early and later 1980s.
Along the way, I became sympathetic to the plight of the Iranian people. I used to donate to Freedom House and asked that the funds be directed to Gozaar, an Iranian web portal that provided information to the Iranian people. Shortly after Mr. Obama was elected, the State Department stopped funding this organization. Excuses were made for this action. Some people, especially on the left, believed that Gozaar endangered Iranian NGOs fighting for reform and supported Mr. Obama’s decision to engage rather than fund.
Well, it goes without saying how effective that has been to promote freedom for the Iranian people. Those of us who see Mr. Obama for who he is were disturbed but not surprised about the events surrounding the 2009 Iranian uprising. The Green Revolution took hold, and all they asked from our globalist president was rhetorical support. The response from our commander-in-chief was a deafening silence. The Iranian people understood the message loud and clear: not “no can do,” but “no will do.” Soon their spirits deflated, their will withered, and their oppressors crushed what was left. Would it have made a difference if Mr. Obama had used his silver tongue and given some support? We will never know, but being the interloper he has been with so many other countries, it is ironic – or maybe not – that the most powerful leader of the free world could not wish the same for others.
We learned more about Mr. Obama’s motives when he circumvented Congress with a so-called executive treaty by returning billions to the Iranian government in exchange for a promise of nuclear disarmament. Hasn’t Mr. Obama ever heard of “taqiyya”? Perhaps he knows it better than we think. Most important, how did this or any of his actions help the Iranian people? If anything, it emboldened the tyrannical mullahs. As of late we heard about Project Cassandra, an investigation into Hezb’allah-linked drug-dealings within our borders, having been stymied by the Obama administration to prevent the nuclear deal from being aborted. Who knows what else will be uncovered about Mr. Obama’s dealings with the Iranians or those of his Rasputin, Iranian-born Valerie Jarrett? We may never get the full truth.
Now we have a new sheriff in town. Unlike Mr. Obama, Mr. Trump does not deliver his message with such mellifluousness, and unlike the elitists of left and right, we “deplorables” are most thankful for that. He is bold, honest, and direct. Perhaps, with the help of social media and the internet, his message of freedom through strength is permeating the walls of censorship and reaching the Iranian people. Their rumblings and discontent are heard loud and clear by this president. Already, he is tweeting his message of support to the people.
Could the Iranians risk another uprising? Time will tell. If they have the will and strength to do so, they should know that freedom-loving Americans support their cause. Could 2018 be the year? If so, we could eventually see the beginnings of a new Middle Eastern landscape. Now, that might seem like a dream, but who would have dreamt that a daring businessman could take on every other GOP candidate; a queen in waiting; and a corrupt, biased press to win the office of president of the United States?
Yes, dreams can and do come true. Here is to the Iranian people.