60 Minutes televised an interview last night of an interview conducted in Iran with President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The interview was the usual fare. The reporter asked a number of irrelevant, mindless questions intended to inflame the audience and mask the real contention the United States has with the land of Iran.
The reporter even had the nerve to suggest that Iran might owe a debt of gratitude to President Bush for deposing of Saddam Hussein. Never mind the fact that Bush never claimed credit for the death of Saddam Hussein. Does Iran also owe a debt to Bush and his father for providing Saddam Hussein with weapons (chemical and traditional) for use against Iranian women and children over an 8 year period? Does Iran owe a debt for the exploitative extraction of mineral wealth by American and British firms? 60 Minutes was lucky that reporter didn’t catch a foot in the ass.
Just as there is no real tension with the people of Iraq, there is no true animus here. Iraqis and Iranians are simply in the way. They need to die, be killed, leave the country, or bend to the will of the US and Britain. There is no rocket science here. There is no real tension between the US and Ahmadinejad. Hell, he doesn’t even run the country really and if white supremacist anti-Muslim Jewish American journalists like NBC’s Matt Lauer can walk the streets unaccosted, there is little to fear from a solid majority of the Iranian people. This is business. It’s not personal. The hyperbole and the references to nukes and the like is to galvanize the left and right in opposition to Iran’s plans for the independent exercise of their intellectual and natural resources.
The nuclear weapon red herring is just that. If you’re childish enough to be drawn into that argument, please enter your bank account number and name in the Reply box below. I promise I won’t buy anything. I just want to test some software. Thanks. Really.
The Iranian president has been compared to Hitler. That’s not news either. Every one is compared to Hitler. Big deal. The early stories reporting Iran’s President wanted to “wipe Israel off the map” made one critical point and ignored another. Ahmadinejad was quoting the spiritual leader of the nation in affirming a widely held position. When quoted at length, his opposition was directed at the United States and Zionism. Now were it not for the extortion/bribe complex which secures UN votes, Israeli tour guides would still be forced to explain to Little Johnny exactly how Zionism isn’t really racism. If Johnny has read all of his history books, he’ll know his tour guide is full of shit. If he’s only read some of the books (and spent the rest of his time playing video games, he’ll drink the Kool-Aid.) If you don’t love Israel and give Kenesset head, you’re Hitler (whether you’re Jewish or not; violent or not; breathing or not). It took decades for the propaganda machine to achieve this level of public affirmation. It’s nonsense, but it is a testament to the effectiveness of concerted effort. Nothing to see here people, keep it moving. The next Hitler is three miles up the road.
Oh, one more thing on this Hitler business.
Is it possible that groups working in concert to convince the world that Zionism is NOT racism could have fabricated another Big Lie? If so, how big could that Big Lie be? Back to business.
So, here’s the rub. Was it necessary for 60 Minutes to subject listeners to a translator with such cumbersome English phrasing and diction? With all the Iranians residing in Orange County alone, was it really necessary for us to listen to lilting, uneven response to basic questions? Was it beyond the scope of those producers to get up and solicit the services of US-based Iranians? There are enough wealthy emigres from the time of the Shah who are practicing law, medicine, and journalism to have prevented this patently obvious propaganda tool from being deployed. Is the argument against Iran so fragile that mumble-mouthed translators must be imposed on folks who have already been spoon fed an aggressive diet of bullshit?
Point of disclosure: I turned it off about half way through the interview (I’m guessing).
Do folks honestly have time to watch nonsense like that and then masquerade around the water cooler as if they’ve participating in an informed discussion? I wonder if Columbia University, that esteemed home of world-class scholarship, can pony up the cash to find an eloquent translator for the occasion of a visit by a head of state. 60 Minutes died with Ed Bradley. R.I.P. I’m kidding. That show was still born when it comes to issues like this. They’re better off dealing with consumer outrage over recalls and shoddy production.
If you really want to translate what was said by the Iranian President and if you want to understand what is really going on in that part of the world, you’ll need more than 60 Minutes.