Iraqi Shiite party steps back from Iran
HUMINT: I'm not looking forward to the day when this line of thinking comes back and bites us in the ass. Yeah right, SCIRI, oops, SCII, is breaking away from Iran...? The mirror of time shows how ugly this analysis is. SCII are going to marry Americans after the Iraq War the same way Americans married the French after the American Revolution. England's monarchy evolved, while France's monarchy dissolved. How many decades before we seriously consider a United Islamic States of America?
I'd like to add, Christianity posed a serious challenge to the Roman Empire's identity. The Jesus Movement at that time contained more true believers than Rome could oppose. Instead, the Roman Empire would absorb the spiritual wave to survive. I do not offer the concept of a United Islamic States of America factiously. I respect Islam in America and admire Muslims. The faith is welcomed to worship in the United States, and has always been. America's current identity is not the problem.
America's founding principle of religious freedom is in danger when the United States empowers Islamic theocracy abroad. When SCII turns to Iran for salvation, and they will, we will have empowered theocratic imperialists. That is what Iran's political philosophy is. Please read the constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran if you have any doubt. In conclusion, empowering theocratic imperialists is an affront to America's true believers... The adverse symptoms of what is happening now will be felt for decades if no cure is found.
HUMINT: Two thoughts came to me when I read your perception of events related to SIIC. I spent the evening toiling with them in hopes that I could articulate them effectively. The first was the concept of SIIC as politically temporary. Those who identify themselves with God do not conceive of themselves as temporary. The identity of SIIC seeks immortality through spiritual righteousness on earth. The name change was not a metamorphosis, rather it was a validation of their permanence.
The second has to do with Iraqi ballots. By my estimation, purple fingered Iraqis harbor political traditions and expectations that allow for economic and spiritual subversion of Iraqi democracy. As Iraqis navigate their future toward self determination, SIIC will assert its righteous permanence with support from like minded brethren in Iran. SIIC will not lose its seat of power under any circumstance, because that would be an affront to their spiritual identity as permanent. The only way to prevent SIIC from abusing their political power would be to limit means and motives to subvert Iraqi democracy. Instead, we are facilitating subversion of democracy by obfuscating Iran's role as a spoiler...
As I write, I pray you are correct on this subject and I am wrong. We are talking about the future so there's still time to make adjustments to analysis and policy. No one, more than I would like to see the United States and Iran cooperate to build a prosperous Iraq. In the mean time, I am unapologetic about my suspicions of Iran and her allies in Iraq. The Iranian government has committed unforgivable acts against the United States, Iraq and the International community. Sooner or latter Iran will pay for its sins - despite what the Department of State may think, the United States cannot afford to assume Iran's debt.
Persian Warriors: Dedicated to President Bush
NORTON: Those I've met consider the current Iranian government only a nuisance. They travel back and forth, buy and sell property, and enjoy life here - but I don't see them calling for resistance 'back home'. Like most folks from that region, political (tribal) turmoil is what they expect and what they are conditioned to deal with. It would possibly help if they referred to themselves as Iranian rather than as Persian or Armenian. [It might also help if they could manage to be just a bit less obvious in their attitude toward Jews.] Just some thoughts.
HUMINT: Thank you for your thoughts. Your observations are legitimate and to the best of my knowledge, accurate. However, the individuals you are referring to have a responsibility to themselves, their families, their countrymen and the world to confront reality; their belligerent government supports terrorism and is systematically developing the means to acquire nuclear weapons. Every time the West turns to these willfully ignorant souls as signs Iran not so bad, or is opening up, the West is burned. By who? By true believers in Tehran. Why? Because the people you are talking about aren't willing to stand up for themselves, much less democracy, much less security...
Never forget that the Iranian people are politically irrelevant to a regime that survives and thrives on petroleum revenue. The economics are clear. The problems stalling positive change in Iran isn't that the people whom you have met only consider the Iranian government a nuisance. The fact that the Government of Iran considers Iranians only a nuisance is the problem! Petroleum revenue disconnects the Iranian government from responsibility to its citizenry. That's why Khomenei's political illusion can thrive with successors in an environment like Iran and Iraq, but only by proxy in Lebanon, and other places...
The signs that Iran is thawing to the West will come from policies the Islamic Republic of Iran implement and allow to function for a reasonable amount of time. That isn't happening. Indeed the opposite is occurring. The IRI has broken and will continue to break every promise it makes to its people and the International community unless it is compelled by force of arms to live up to their promises. The U.S. military presence in the region has softened some inside Iran but hardened others. Think in terms of evolution my friend. When a protectorate retreats, the hard devourer the soft. A positive U.S. influence in Iraq and Afghanistan must be cemented to prevent Tehran's irresponsible government from destroying the lives of millions, including your willfully ignorant friends.