Tucker Carlson says that the U.S. has moral authority to annihilate Iran because they’re evil.
What makes Iran evil?
Moreover, there is a widespread myth repeated by American media and politicians that Iran’s President (Ahmadinejad) said that Israel should be “wiped off the map”.
As a New York Times translation notes, Ahmadinejad wasn’t referring to Israel at all, but to the “regime” – i.e. the current political administration - in Israel.
Moreover, it was not Ahmadinejad himself speaking. He was quoting Ayatollah Khomeini, who died in 1989 (and who looked exactly like Sean Connery’s evil twin)
Arash Norouzi – who despises Iran’s current leadership as a “backward regime” – notes:
What did Ahmadinejad actually say? To quote his exact words in Farsi:
“Imam ghoft een rezhim-e ishghalgar-e qods bayad az safheh-ye ruzgar mahv shavad.”
That passage will mean nothing to most people, but one word might ring a bell: rezhim-e. It is the word “regime.” pronounced just like the English word with an extra “eh” sound at the end. Ahmadinejad did not refer to Israel the country or Israel the land mass, but the Israeli regime. This is a vastly significant distinction, as one cannot wipe a regime off the map. Ahmadinejad does not even refer to Israel by name, he instead uses the specific phrase “rezhim-e ishghalgar-e qods” (regime occupying Jerusalem).
So this raises the question.. what exactly did he want “wiped from the map”? The answer is: nothing. That’s because the word “map” was never used. The Persian word for map, “nagsheh” is not contained anywhere in his original Farsi quote, or, for that matter, anywhere in his entire speech. Nor was the western phrase “wipe out” ever said. Yet we are led to believe that Iran’s president threatened to “wipe Israel off the map.” despite never having uttered the words “map.” “wipe out” or even “Israel.”
The full quote translated directly to English:
“The Imam said this regime occupying Jerusalem must vanish from the page of time.”
Word by word translation:
Imam (Khomeini) ghoft (said) een (this) rezhim-e (regime) ishghalgar-e (occupying) qods (Jerusalem) bayad (must) az safheh-ye ruzgar (from page of time) mahv shavad (vanish from).
As the New York Times pointed out
R. Nicholas Burns, the under secretary of state for political affairs, recently: “Given the radical nature of Iran under Ahmadinejad and its stated wish to wipe Israel off the map of the world, it is entirely unconvincing that we could or should live with a nuclear Iran.” But is that what Mr. Ahmadinejad said? And if so, was it a threat of war?
For months, a debate among Iran specialists over both questions has been intensifying. It starts as a dispute over translating Persian but quickly turns on whether the United States (with help from Israel) is doing to Iran what some believe it did to Iraq building a case for military action predicated on a faulty premise. “Ahmadinejad did not say he was going to wipe Israel off the map because no such idiom exists in Persian,” remarked Juan Cole, a Middle East specialist at the University of Michigan and critic of American policy who has argued that the Iranian president was misquoted.
“He did say he hoped its regime, i.e., a Jewish-Zionist state occupying Jerusalem, would collapse.” Since Iran has not “attacked another country aggressively for over a century,” he said in an e-mail exchange, “I smell the whiff of war propaganda.”
Jonathan Steele, a columnist for the left-leaning Guardian newspaper in London, recently laid out the case this way:
The Iranian president was quoting an ancient statement by Iran’s first Islamist leader, the late Ayatollah Khomeini, that ‘this regime occupying Jerusalem must vanish from the page of time,’ just as the Shah’s regime in Iran had vanished. He was not making a military threat. He was calling for an end to the occupation of Jerusalem at some point in the future. The ‘page of time’ phrase suggests he did not expect it to happen soon.
In fact, many orthodox Jews are opposed to Zionism. Whether Zionism is a good or bad political movement is open to debate. But Iran’s dislike of the Zionist regime is not the same as calling for Israel to be wiped off the map … in the same way that disliking the Bush administration or the Obama administration is not the same as calling for the destruction of America.
In terms of the U.S. having “moral authority” to annihilate Iran, perhaps Mr. Carlson thinks that America’s overthrow of Iran’s democratically-elected government, backing of Iraq in the war against Iran, and support of terrorist groups trying to overthrow the Iranian government give us the moral authority to continue to attack Iran.
* I am from the Judeo-Christian tradition, and am accepting of both Jews and Christians. Please remember that Christian writer and Army psychiatrist M. Scott Peck explained that there are different stages of spiritual maturity. Fundamentalism – whether it be Muslim, Christian, Jewish or Hindu fundamentalism – is an immature stage of development. Indeed, a a Christian fundamentalist who kills others in the name of religion is much more similar to a Muslim fundamentalist who kills other in the name of his religion than to a Christian who peacefully fights for justice and truth, helps the poor, or serves to bring hope to the downtrodden.