Over at his other blog, Jacques Delacroix has made it a habit of trying very, very hard to discredit the facts that Ron Paul spouts during the televised Presidential debates (I don’t think he has bothered to read any of the relevant literature that Ron Paul has put out over the years, especially on foreign policy).
This is fair enough, and, as a senior citizen (what else could it be?), Ron Paul is prone to sometimes babbling on out of turn about unrelated topics or topics that the media establishment deems unimportant (like free trade, sound money, and honest friendship).
Anyway, Dr. Delacroix wonders aloud in a recent piece about Ron Paul’s statement concerning the 45 U.S. military bases surrounding Iran. He writes (in a tone none too condescending):
Reminder: I have said before that Ron Paul lives in an imaginary world as far as international policies are concerned.
The “imaginary world”, is, of course, referring to Paul’s argument that the U.S. is not a benevolent actor in international affairs but rather a bellicose, juvenile world power struggling to assert its primacy across the globe. This could be accomplished if it were not for the constitutional restraints placed upon the executive branch, of course, but I am digressing.
Here is a map of the bases and airports that the United States uses for military purposes in the Arabian Gulf:
Of course, the Persians have a way out of this predicament, through their ancient, eternal friends in the Caucasus hills and Russia, so I don’t feel too sorry for this awful regime’s predicament (it’s okay, I rolled my eyes too).
A good way of putting this current state of affairs into some sort of historical context would be to remind readers that the U.S. government overthrew a democratically elected government in Persia during the late 1950’s (“because it was socialist”) and re-installed a brutal tyrant – the recently deposed monarch of the Persian empire – to rule the state as he saw fit.
In 1979, the brutal, U.S.-sponsored regime was overthrown by religious fundamentalists and a new dictatorship was installed in the Shah’s (as the monarch was called) place. Nothing really changed much after the revolution, except that clergyman began to receive favors from Tehran instead of the aristocracy (as was done under the Shah).
On a side note, I live in an area of Los Angeles that is home to many of the refugees of the 1979 revolution, and pictures of the Shah – a brutal and disgusting man – abound in all of the Persian-language bookshops that adorn Westwood’s luxurious streets. I’ll bet these refugees have lots of lobbying money invested in Washington.
Anyway, after the revolution of 1979 in Persia (which became known as “Iran” after the National Socialist German Worker’s Party of the 1930’s concept of “Aryan nation”; a fitting harbinger of things to come from the new theocratic regime) occurred, a General in Iraq associated with a secularist, socialist, but anti-Soviet political party just happened to take over the Iraqi state in a coup.
In case you are wondering: the U.S. government was very involved in Iraqi affairs during the 1950’s, ’60’s, ’70’s and ’80’s. Also, Washington’s clandestine operations are widely rumored to have sponsored the coup, just as they had done in countless other client states during the Cold War. Just after Saddam Hussein’s succession to power, a war broke out between Iraq and Iran (how convenient!), and the U.S. was eventually outed for supporting both sides of the conflict.
To make a long story short (I have to go to class), the wars in the Middle East that the United States is involved in are hardly due to “Islamo-fascism” or aggression on the part of the despotic regimes there. Rather, they are all creatures of previous meddling done by Washington, and the blowback has just now begun to haunt us, starting with the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Centers.