Saturday, September 02, 2006

ROSCOE'S Weak-End Review

The Khatami visa: A minority view

We know. We know. Nobody likes the issuing of a visa to Iranian leader Mohammad Khatami to come to the United States and meet with Bush-bashers like Jimmy Carter. Agreed. Normally, we’re on the same side of issues like this with experts like Michael Ledeen and Gary Metz (a.k.a. Dr. Z of Regime Change Iran).

But in this case, we’re more in tune with the minority view being expressed by Iranian expatriate writer and editor Amir Taheri, who’s produced a number of works of late with rare insight. On the visa controversy, Taheri says, “There is no harm in letting Khatami come to Washington to be exposed to pubic scrutiny.”

Khatami, once considered a reformer, is the predecessor of Iranian President Mahmoud “Mojo” Ahmadinejad. Taheri reasons that a Khatami visit might provide an opportunity for some comeuppance as the Iranian is subjected to the news media of a free society and is forced to answer for atrocities committed by his administration, including:

o The assassination of dissidents.
o The arrest and torture of thousands of people, including trade unionists and student leaders.
o The closing of more than 150 newspapers and magazines.
o The banning of hundreds of books and dozens of films.
o The arming of the Hezbollah in Lebanon.
o Shipping weapons to Yasser Arafat’s terror units and Islamic Jihad.
o Providing the Jaish al-Mahdi in Iraq with money and arms.

Of course, Taheri may be giving our Bush-bashing mainstream mediocracy way too much credit. We’ll see. If they wimp out or, worse, jump aboard the Bush-bashmobile, they may have the new media to rub their noses in it. That’s us, folks. Let’s hold them accountable on their coverage of this event.

Read the rest of the Taheri piece—as well as a series of other writers on the other side—here. The Taheri piece comes last in this post.

Parting note: Another factor entering into our minority view here is that we’re also not eager to attack Iran, at least at this point, over its nuclear ambitions and Middle East aggressions (arming Hezbollah, fomenting Shiite opposition in Iraq, etc.). That’s for two reasons: Mojo (for reasons detailed here Aug. 27, “Mojo’s martyr complex”) is trying to provoke us to attack, and we don’t want to play into his hand. And, it may not be widely known in the West, but Mojo’s regime is skating on pretty thin domestic ice. If we’re smart about it, we might be able to facilitate regime change more easily in other ways.

On the other hand, this doesn't mean we still wouldn't like to see a well-placed bunker buster at the site of the well at Jamkaran to erase Mr. Mahdi, the mythical Muslim Messiah—who’s the whole reason for Mojo’s provocative behavior in the first place.


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