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Aid for Quake Victims in Iran

July 01, 1990

History is full of paradoxes, and in the modern age of media manipulation, one persistent historical paradox has been the fact that often public opinion acquiesces to the rhetoric of an internally oppressive and externally ill-mannered regime and accepts the alleged solidarity between the ruler and the ruled and ultimately chastises the vanquished victims of terror and irrationality as culprits in the crimes of the victors.

Iranian people have had their share of historical paradoxes. They have not only suffered an inordinate number of natural catastrophes and in each calamity have paid heavily with their lives and limbs for infrastructural weaknesses that were themselves prompted by poverty as well as governmental incompetence and corruption, but in recent years they have been identified with every word and whim of their clerical rulers and thus now find themselves abandoned by much of the public here in the U.S.

The paltry attention and assistance so far given to the Iranian victims of the earthquake are a sad sobering testimony to this paradox.

It is not the "Iranian people," but only some of its quixotic rulers who shout "death to America" while entrapped in the rubble of their mud huts. It is not only the West that is encumbered by such quixotic elements, but those same alleged accomplices, and actually innocent and abandoned people of Iran who will and have paid the heaviest price for such dogmatic extremism. The best antidote to this dangerous form of radicalism is to notbuy into its claim of unity with the populace.

Help the Iranian people!

ABBAS MILANI

Belmont

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