Why Iran? [Archives:2001/21/Focus]

May 21 2001

By: Hassan Al-Haifi
This observer was quite surprised by the article that appeared proximate to this column last week, in which the author tried to play guessing games with the readers, whether because he was afraid to come out and say who he was talking about, or because he wanted to keep the reader glued to his article, because he might have felt that no one would probably finish reading it. In any case, whatever the reasons, this observer feels that our dear friend was really misinformed or misguided when lashing out against one of the few countries in the region that seemed to show any real qualitative cultural leap that is bound to show that the sponsors of the Iranian Revolution had greater horizons in mind than just to gain power for power’s sake, as is the case of most of the revolutionary regimes of the region. On the other hand, one wonders at the poor timing our friend chose to lash out at one of the most responsible regional powers, which has shown more declared and open support of the causes that really matter to most Moslems, if not most Arabs, and surely this support has been far more effective in frightening the enemies of this nation, than all the so so nationalist propaganda that most state media in the region comes out with.
Nevertheless, as if our friend could really not find any real fundamental reason for his diatribe against the Iranians, with objective insight, he went back to that old menace in Islamic relations, the sectoral inclinations that the Moslem World has been suckered into squabbling about for centuries – the cause d’être of their demise in the end. Why? Who cares if the Iranians were Shiites or Sunnis or Ismaelis or whatever sect Moslems have erroneously taken to prevail over the fundamental basic fact that all of us are first and foremost Moslem? The fundamental question that should predominate in our minds is, is what the Iranians doing right, and is it in active support of the causes that we truly should tire ourselves working so hard to uphold?
The truth of the matter is that Iran, for the first time in the history of the Moslem World has adopted a regime that first of all relies on a sound legislative and institutional framework that does away with the personality of the cult, which has placed most of the Moslem World under die-hard autocratic regimes, that busy themselves with glorifying the leaders of these regimes, even to the point of forgetting the fundamental democratic principles, which Islam initially came to instill in the minds and hearts of the faithful, even more so than the ceremonial or surface worship rites, which many of the so called fundamentalists of our era, seem to busy themselves with, forgetting that oppression and tyranny are as anathema to Islam as idol worship – if not even more so.
On the other hand, it seems our friend finds Iran’s support of Hizbullah as criminal, while it is clear that most of the billion or so Moslems of the world have applauded the victories of Hizbullah as a victory for all Moslems – Sunnis, Shiites, etc. and have looked to Hizbullah as a shining example of true resistance against the true enemies of Islam – the Zionists of the like of Ariel Sharon and Rabbi Ovadio Yosef and against those that have been mislead into believing that the Zionist cause is part and parcel of the New World Order, including those Arab leaders that find it significant to recognize the criminal regime that has been implanted at the heart of the Moslem nation to destroy whatever dignity that is left after all the maladies and transgressions, which the West continuously harbors against the Moslem nation, either directly or through its support of the tyrannical regimes that prevail over most of the Moslem countries.
Moreover, should we not look towards the transparency and accountability by which the Iranian regime seems to be applying rather successfully, as a shining example of true Islamic thinking – and not Shiite thinking alone – that we can perhaps find some comfort in, because we have seen so many Moslem regimes, progressive and traditional, which have neglected this important aspect of fundamental Islamic Government.
I dare say that our friend Sharif Akram must open his eyes much wider and expand the horizons of his mind, if he is truly hopeful of serving our true fundamental perceptions of the world and our own state of being. The kind of opinions we find in Akram Sharif’s article lends credence to the notion that the motives behind the article are more diabolical than honest intentions of furthering the causes of Islamic unity and advocating for the rights and interests of the Arab and Moslem nation. One should not fail to mention that the term “Devil’s Advocate” fits very well into the implications behind Mr. Sharif’s misguided commentary.
Surely those Arab parliamentarians and leaders of even some of the fundamentalist Islamic groups that came to Teheran last month could not be accused of succumbing to serving the interests of Iran, for they were there with the interests of the entire Moslem nation in mind, which Iran, as a true Moslem State is bound to uphold as one of the reasons for its cause d’être.
I dare say that for many Moslems, it is clear that the hostility and animosity which the Zionist propaganda machine is propagating in the West and which Mr. Sharif seems keen on advocating here, against the progressive Moslem regime in Iran, is sufficient cause for the Moslems to give their full support and backing to the causes that Iran is sponsoring and acting well within the bounds of national responsibility and Islamic jurisprudence, which even the West cannot fail to acknowledge as well.
It is really disheartening to find that with all the problems and divisions that the Moslem world is confronting now, and with the weakness of most Moslem countries in defending their rights and their interests, that some of our followers in the faith will insist on needlessly advocating for the continuation of the rifts that have kept this nation in deep slumber and powerless to uphold their rights and even their lives, either because they are mislead into thinking that they will find their paths to personal ambitions accordingly, or because they really have felt that this is the kind of stuff that they hope will get readers to look at their writing, because they really have nothing of substance to tell anyone anyway.