By Andre Vltchek*
Iran is strong, but it is not a monolith. As the world around it keeps changing, Iran changes as well; it evolves, and it reacts to the circumstances and various geopolitical developments.
The world is actually not always a friendly place, and Iran has already suffered on many occasions. The West strikes each time the country dares to insist on its independent path: during the administration of Prime Minister Mohammad Mosaddegh, or after the 1979 Islamic Revolution by sponsoring, in fact unleashing, Iraqi invasion which led to prolonged and deadly war (1980-1988). There were interventions, sponsored invasions, as well as acts of terrorism that took lives of countless Iranian people.
In 2015 I had an honor to participate and to speak at the “2nd International Congress on 17.000 Iranian Terror Victims”. While sharing some thoughts with my Iranian hosts and counterparts, I learned a lot about the suffering (in the West basically unreported) as well as thoroughly unjust treatment received by the Iranian people from the Western countries and from the Western allies.
My visit to Teheran was an eye opening experience for other reasons as well: I was expecting to encounter a society under siege, defensive and cautious, closed and sad. Instead I was embraced by a huge and beautiful city that was full of life and colors, overflowing with culture and history; a true socialist city with innumerable public spaces, modern public transportation, and countless programs directed at improving welfare of the citizens.
Somehow I felt at home in Teheran. I asked my hosts and also several local academics and thinkers witch whom I had been interacting: “Why does Teheran feel in many ways like a capital of one of our revolutionary countries in Latin America?” The answer came almost immediately: “The government of Iran is very close to the leadership of Venezuela! Our countries are sharing many values.”
Iran is now proudly standing shoulder to shoulder with those countries that have decisively rejected Western dictate. It became inseparable part of the mighty anti-imperialist alliance, which includes such nations as Russia, China, Venezuela, Cuba, South Africa and Syria.
In modern history it never attacked, never invaded any other country, and chances are that it never will. However, in exchange for its non-aggressive policy it demands respect and equal treatment, and naturally the safety and security for its people.
It is now very clear that the West is not willing to fulfill any of the basic and reasonable demands of most of the international community. Instead of working for world peace, it antagonizes, demonizes and provokes all countries that are unwilling to give up their independence: from Russia to China. It triggers lethal coups (successfully or unsuccessfully), as it recently did in Brazil and Venezuela. It chokes proud nations by imposing unjust sanctions, like it did with Cuba, Eritrea or Iran itself. And it directly attacks and often even destroys those countries that are refusing to surrender even after some terrible pressure is applied and countless intimidations administered, as happened to Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan or Syria (although there, the West failed patently to achieve its sinister goals).
Iran refuses to succumb to brutal force. It exercises its undeniable right to defend itself by developing its own defense systems. It patrols its seas and its airspace, and when provoked and insulted, it even sends its naval fleet to the neutral waters near the United States coast.
It refuses to act as a weak state, and as a victim. Like China, Cuba and Russia, it inspires other countries of the world by showing pride and dignity, meeting challenges with decisive actions, showing strength and courage when its safety and dignity gets challenged.
Recently, Iran sent high state delegation to Latin America, in order to strengthen ties with several revolutionary and left-leaning nations there.
Its relationships with Beijing and Moscow are also constantly improving. It even allowed Russian air force to use its military airport, in order to facilitate Russia’s efforts to help with the liberation of Syria from foreign-sponsored terrorists.
In Syria itself, Teheran maintains close ties with the legitimate government, and in Lebanon, it cooperates with Hezbollah, which is the only true national movement capable and willing to provide social services to all people, to fight ISIS across the border (in Syria) and to keep Israel at bay.
Iran is also involved, together with Russia and other countries, in seeking acceptable peaceful solution for the ongoing conflict in the neighboring Afghanistan.
It is also decisively opposing the brutal Saudi involvement in Yemen, the Israeli occupation of Palestine, and spreading of the extremist terrorist groups all over the area (sponsored by the West and by its regional allies).
It is certain that without Iran and its decisive anti-imperialist stand, the last flickers of resistance, as well as strife for true independence in the Middle East, would long be extinguished.
Western mainstream media is constantly reminding us that Iran is an Islamic republic, and that by definition it cannot have the same goals and interests as the revolutionary and secular countries in Latin America and elsewhere. That is not correct. Country Iran is above all engaged in building much better future for its citizens, as it is involved in decisive struggle for the free world, without any forms of colonialism or neo-colonialism.
Its leaders and average citizens are finding easily the common language with their counterparts in Latin America, Asia, Africa and of course, the Middle East.
Direct contacts are established, between the nations and their citizens. No need to allow Western media and propaganda outlets to explain Iran to the world. In order to combat the anti-Iranian propaganda, and to challenge imperialist narrative of the West in the Middle East, Iran launched PressTV, an important media outlet, similar in strength and independent-mindedness to such counterparts as the Russia’s RT, China’s CGTV and to Latin American Telesur.
38 years after the Revolution, Iran is standing tall. Of course it faces many challenges, but its importance on the world stage is now undeniable. And it is in a ‘good company’ of the nations that are more interested in survival, egalitarianism and prosperity of our planet, than in some short-sighted profits coming from imperialist violence and plunder.
*Andre Vltchek is a philosopher, novelist, filmmaker and investigative journalist. He has covered wars and conflicts in dozens of countries. Three of his latest books are revolutionary novel “Aurora” and two bestselling works of political non-fiction: “Exposing Lies Of The Empire” and “Fighting Against Western Imperialism”. View his other books here. Andre is making films for teleSUR and Al-Mayadeen. Watch Rwanda Gambit, his groundbreaking documentary about Rwanda and DRCongo. After having lived in Latin America, Africa and Oceania, Vltchek presently resides in East Asia and the Middle East, and continues to work around the world. He can be reached through his website and his Twitter.
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