(I'm backtracking now and adding this May, 2006 commentary on America's shameful history with Iran, since Bush continues to beat the drums of war against it. Published in the Canton IL Daily Ledger.)
IRAN, VENEZUELA, and SEPTEMBER 11TH
"What America Needs to Know"
by Connie Cook Smith
There are continuing and escalating indications that Mr. Bush might blame something on Iran, and then use our soldiers to expand his illegal and deadly occupation of the Middle East.
History acknowledges that the Shah's rule of Iran was authoritarian -- more specifically, it was brutal -- and that led to the Islamic Revolution. But seldom is it mentioned that it was America who installed this dictator, the Shah. And that this is what caused the Iranian people to rise up against us and take our 52 hostages in 1979.
Iran had a healthy democracy in 1953. Just imagine how democracy might have peacefully spread throughout the Middle East all those years ago, if we'd let it be! But Iran's democratically elected leader Mosaddeq offended U.S. oil corporations and their powerful families. Mosaddeq thought his nation's oil profits should go to the Iranian people, not to U.S. and British interests.
So in the first of many such shocking dirty tricks over the rest of the 20th century, our country spearheaded a covert operation in Iran to take down Mosaddeq -- by paying people to start riots against him, etc. -- our tax dollars at work!
And thus it was: the legitimate leader of Iran was destroyed. The Shah (and his torture tactics) were literally enthroned. The Iranians lost their oil revenues. Thousands who resisted gruesomely lost their lives. And democracy in the Middle East died.
If those people DO hate us, is it any wonder?
The astute reader here may put 2 and 2 together and ponder whether the same situation is going on in Venezuela, due to its enormous oil reserves. The democratically elected leader Hugo Chavez suddenly did go down in 2002. But just as suddenly, he was able to overturn the coup against him -- simply because he EXPECTED a secretive and dirty pattern of interference, which well-informed people everywhere have come to know.
Here are only two books which document numerous covert and tragic U.S. interventions, featuring the facts that clearly explain why America's flag is more despised than beloved around the world: "Killing Hope, U.S. Interventions Since WWII," by former State Department agent William Blum, and "Overthrow, America's Century of Regime Change," by NY Times Bureau Chief Stephen Kinzer.
What we need to come to terms with is that many of the shady characters involved in these plots to oppress and rob other countries are the same people who have risen to the top of our political spectrum now -- Republicans AND Democrats whom I regard as equally corrupt.
I caution my fellow Americans: if it hasn't begun to dawn on you how bad they are, I think you need to be prepared for terrible shocks. These guys don't hesitate to harm humanity to get what they want -- and that includes terrorizing the citizenry of this nation.
By that I mean, evidence is building to a volcano-velocity that September 11th could not have happened to the most militarily advanced nation in the world -- unless high-ups in our government allowed the numerous warnings and every layer of defense to fail.
And for what purpose? To whip us into a fury against "those Muslim fundamentalists who did it," which in turn justifies an OPEN occupation and robbery of their lands.
The time is rapidly coming when Americans comprehend the evidence that Mohammed Atta and gang were drinking, drugging, womanizers who had no interest in Allah or Islam. And that genuine Muslim believers would never stage a one-day attack on mighty America. All it would do is cause us, "the infidel," to invade and occupy them -- the last thing they would ever want.
No, the long string of covert plots to overthrow other governments and exploit their resources took a breathtaking turn on September 11, 2001. Countless conferences, videos, and well-documented books now demonstrate that 9/11 was an OVERT (yet still deceptive) action by prominent Americans, who are old hands at trickery and treachery.
I sincerely hope we all pull together when the evidence explodes about how deeply we're being deceived into supporting death and destruction abroad, and impoverishment and oppression at home.