Last modified: 7:58 AM Saturday, 14 January 2017

Unearthly splendor

This is a page no one in the United States, Israel or Europe should miss. In 37 photos, it leads us on a tour of Iran, whose efforts to build a nuclear power facility in Isfahan are the subject of international scrutiny, sanctions and threats of aerial attack, all at the behest of the US.

Chehel Sotoun Palace Pavilion, Isfahan, Iran

Chehel Sotoun Palace Pavilion, in Isfahan, sits perilously close to Iran’s nuclear energy development project facilities.
[ Image Source ]

As commenter “Raingod” observes, the Western media have adroitly painted Iran in dark and funereal colors, creating a sinister picture of a barbaric land filled with primitive fanatics. There is no doubt that these elements do exist, but to look at this page is to see how isolated and benighted our media have kept us, to begin to comprehend that there is far more to Iran (as there is to each of our enemies du jour) than passes through our indoctrination filters, and to wonder how many other lies we are being told.

We are constantly reminded, for example, of the 1979 revolution when Iranian students held 52 American diplomatic and military personnel hostage for 444 days. We are left shaking our heads in wonder: How could they hate us so much? But how often do our media speak of the 1953 coup engineered by the CIA for the commercial benefit of the oil company now known as BP, in which the democratically elected president of Iran was overthrown and replaced with the brutal despotic monarchy of Shah Mohamed Reza Pahlavi as enforced by the feared Savak secret police?

I hope we can look past the illusions conjured by our media in service of a corrupt mercantile elite and do what is necessary to stop the US and its satrapies from doing to Iran as they have done to Iraq and Afghanistan. For Iran, the Persia of yesteryear, is not as they have painted it: It is a place of beauty in a thousand different forms, its citizens diverse, well educated and better informed of us than we of them, and I would not care to see all of this obliterated in the service of a neoconservative geostrategic agenda predicated on Israel’s uncontested domination of the Middle East.

Originally published as a review of a folk.uib.no photo essay on Iran. Update: As of 6 May 2015, this page returns a 404 Not Found error.

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