A different view of Iran
Dear Editor:Having just returned from a visit to Iran, I take issue with the Bush administration statements that Iran is a threat to peace and stability in the Middle East. It has neither territorial ambitions, nor has it occupied another country, although it is well aware of being wedged between two countries (Iraq to the East and Afghanistan to the West) invaded by and occupied by the U.S. Iran has complied with the Non-Proliferation Treaty and allowed International Atomic Energy Agency inspections.If Iran’s president’s rhetoric seems radical, history shows he has cause as the U.S. and Britain orchestrated the overthrow of the democratic Iranian regime of Mossadeq in 1953 and supported Iraq when it invaded Iran in 1980. As a result of our overthrowing Mossadeq, it is reported U.S. corporations gained a 40-percent control over its formerly nationalized oil fields, and installed the U.S.-friendly shah. In Shiraz, I saw hotel, apartment, university and subway buildings, as well as reforestation, wonderful flower displays and public gardens and parks. There were wonderful ancient ruins nearby that were full of Iranians on a New Year (March 21) holiday. Iran’s economy is faltering with high inflation and unemployment among young people.With the second-largest, I believe, world reserves of natural gas and large oil reserves, it needs trade agreements, increased tourism, internal restructuring of government-dominated businesses and, importantly, security from American bombings. The U.S needs to stop discouraging countries like India from setting up agreements to buy natural gas from Iran. Our Middle East actions, sanctions against Iran and mobilizing international pressure against them, has caused them to become more protectionist.Cathleen KraheCarbondale
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