Wednesday, October 23, 2002

A reader opines:
> Not for sure, of course, but there are a number of indicators. At least I asked the question. The point I was
> trying to make was that this discussion has largely been conducted as if the Iranian people did not exist; Big
> Daddy would decide what was best for Iran. And when I asked if anyone cared how the Iranians would have
> answered the question, Donald replied, Not really.
> U.S. foreign policy in the fifties and sixties, in a nutshell.

I rejoined:
Actually, that should be U.S. foreign policy at any time. Any foreign policy of a country that doesn't put first and foremost the concerns of its own polity is a foreign policy that is a failure before it has begun. But my point wasn't really about the primacy of American interests in foreign policy, but rather the unimportance of some mass sentiment in a poor, ignorant, continually propagandized, and repressed populace. To 'care' about such a sentiment is to set aside an objective concern with their well-being, the well-being of their country, or the greater
geo-political concerns. All opinions are not created equal. However, there is much to be said for an opinion that has the support of a majority in a free, informed, and productive society. But to give weight to an 'opinion' formed by folks ground-down by poverty and disease, completely ignorant of the relevant issues, and ceaselessly inundated with propogandic lies and to give force to the very evil oppressors that keep those people in the doldrums of history. So spare me the upturned nose over my lack of concern over the 'opinion' of the Iranian people (however divined). My concern is that, someday, their opinion will be worth listening to...having been
formed in the bosom of a democratic and free society. D.GOOCH


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