Thursday, September 20, 2007

Gratuitous Iran Bashing

As we all know, Iraq had nothing whatsoever to do with 9/11. Neither -- by every account I have ever read -- did Iran.

So why not allow Iran's leader to pay his respects at Ground Zero and lay a wreath there, at the former site of the World Trade Center? Why not? Because Iran sponsors terrorism, the US Administration says.

I don't think Iran's Prime Minister intended gesture is especially political -- he's not doing anything other than what most foreign heads of state have done throughout the past six years -- when they pay a visit to New York City. Foreign heads of state typically lay wreaths at Ground Zero. And let us not forget: Iran did offer the US useful assistance in the immediate aftermath of 9/11. In gratitude, Bush declared Iran a member of the Axis of Evil.

I think the US government's posturing here is disgraceful and very political. You don't treat the Iranian Prime Minister this way. It's rude. It's the kind of gratuitous insult that could really set back US relations with Iran. And I can't help but think that's the whole point.

I think this is a really crass attempt to associate Iran with 9/11, and -- by extension -- terrorism. Paint Iran as the enemy. The US, with the help of the media, is gearing up the public for a crap shot of a war with Iran -- a war intended to salvage Bush's sorry legacy. War with Iran will be a vanity war for America's leaders.