Iranian Historical Fallacies and the Current Popular Narratives

For persistent listeners to the program, a great theme often reiterated has been the study of propagated fallacies, both in the science of economics as well as history. The distortion of facts and premises for the perceived advancement of a certain view has always been a problem in convincing the populace, but egregious faults are once again making their cyclical rounds across newspaper editorials and even presidential debates.

The latest example to hold to light is the rhetoric of former Senator Rick Santorum who, in the Presidential debate in Iowa before the straw poll, attempted to spar with Congressman Ron Paul on the issue of Iran.

The most blatantly-false claim dribbled from the mouth of Sen. Santorum is that “Iran has been at war with us since 1979”. This is a lie circulated heavily amongst the warmongering Right, including Hal Lindsey, George W. Bush, and Donald Rumsfeld, two of which should be before tribunals. The image these fear soothsayers attempt to convey is a delicate Middle Eastern fairyland, completely thrown out of balance by evil destruction-bent revolutionaries in Iran who care more for stocking up on nuclear weapons than feeding their own people. The narrative follows that Iran has constantly been at war with the United States ever since they took hostages in 1979, at the beginning of the Iranian revolution, and they will know do anything to completely obliterate Israel from the Earth.

Lost in this false reading of history, however, was the American-supported coup in Iran in 1953 (resuméd quite beautiful in a NY Times article). In Operation Ajax, led by Theodore Roosevelt’s grandson and CIA agent Kermit Roosevelt, Jr., the secretive Central Intelligence Agency supported a rouge group of “rebels” who toppled the regime and installed the Shah. This correct narrative of history is most dutily-explained in the following clip, examining the timeline of U.S.-Iran relations, as well as the current historical fallacies:

Yet another debunking of historical fallacies which pervade the minds of war apologists. The job continues.


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