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Voices and legality
by Thanos Kalamidas
2008-06-27 09:31:32
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The Iranian government condemned the new EU sanctions against Teheran over the uranium enrichment program as illegal and this raises the question what is legal and what illegal. Is any written law legal or does everything have the Machiavellian roots of the more powerful, to use one of our Professor Paparella's favorites?

The truth is that everybody has the right to nuclear power and it doesn’t matter what I personally think about the results of using it. And supposedly this is a world of equal right, if USA and EU has the right to support their energy needs with nuclear power then Teheran has exactly the same rights. But the objection stands on the further use of uranium. If Teheran uses enriched uranium to create nuclear bombs then this is bad, but from the other side of the hill, USA and their allies first created nuclear bombs, tested them and actually used them and then they created energy plans.

Teheran is of course stuck in the corner and if the only thing they want is what they say, to create a nuclear plant for energy reasons, then the whole world is unfair, extremely unfair especially after preaching for so long for open markets, globalization of energy and the rest. I can understand this anti-western feeling, after all the western powers often screwed the whole region for decades if not centuries using their natural resources the worst possible way and sometimes dividing countries and local rules just to be able to rule, the old British colonial believe, divide and rule. Never forget that booth the Persian Shah and Saddam despite their end survived due to the American and the British support.

And if this screw up was not enough George W. Bush took care to make things worst with the invasion and occupation of Iraq just to give more excuses to all this anti-western feelings. And don’t worry times have often find Europeans even Americans demonstrating against some of those American administrations. But I suppose the distance blinds people and they cannot sense the difference between been against an unfair administration and against a whole nation, apparently they are doing exactly the same thing the other side doing to them. Iranians say that they are not extremist and danger for the west and I totally believe them till I read the latest their president said.

When you start thinking, hold on they must have some right here, comes Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and his puppet Mahmoud Ahmadinejad just to screw you over. Threatening Israel, threatening Europe, threatening USA. Wait, the man is not threatening Gordon Brown or Silvio Berlusconi even Matti Vanhanen, he threatens me! He knows he cannot reach any of the above so he starts threatening the people and there is one truth, people never handle well threats. You might say that his main target is Israel and Israel is too far away from here. I insure you when it comes to threatening innocent people it is very close! This is the part that wipes off every reasoning Teheran had build till then.

When somebody tells me that his aim is to make a neighbor nation disappear from the face of earth means to me that he is not going to stop in creating a nuclear bomb but he’s going to use it as well. And we all know that it will not take more than one bomb for the nemesis.

You might argue that this fear kept USA and Russia in balance for more than fifty years, this fear keeps Pakistan and India today and yes I don’t like and I don’t trust Musharraf but at least Musharraf is an army man, knows about casualties and war what can you say about a fanatic cleric or a fanatic politician? Can you trust them when anything they do they can blame it on an invisible God? I will never forget reading a couple of years before an interview with Ahmadinejad where he mentioned that he speaks with God! This still brings me shivers! What will happen when the voices in his mind tell him to nuke Jerusalem?

Logically what EU and USA are doing is on the limits of legality if not illegal but the thing is, would you trust peace on the hands of somebody who listens voices in the dark and he calls them god?

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Emanuel Paparella2008-06-27 10:39:22
To answer the question at the end Thanos: of course not! And there lies the wisdom of the US founding fathers: to establish a polity with a clear separation of Church and State while at the same time assuring freedom of religion. That in turn insured that a Theocracy would never be created (as some fundamentalist Christian seem to advocate, unfortunately). Theocracy by its nature breeds fanaticism, exactly because it creates a mind-set which believes that it is one’s duty to fight the enemies of God when God so declares them. Who those enemies might be is, of course, revealed by God himself. It is a perfectly vicious circle.

But there is another side to this coin. The EU solution on the other hand has been that of throwing out the baby with the bathwater. Since there have been abuses and corruption in religion, so the argument goes, let’s throw religion out the window, or at best let’s relegate to the private sphere of one hour in Church on Sunday so that we can be left in peace the other seven days to act by Machiavellian principles of real politik which have nothing to do with Platonic ideals. Religion has no democratic place in the public square. In fact, as Mao well expressed to the Dai Lalama: religion is poison and is of course “the opium of the people.” The famed “workers’ paradise” means nothing more than the comfortable society and the hedonistic life-style where material goods are abundant but spiritual goods are scarce and practically nobody cares for the Good, not to speak of the True and the Beautiful.

Emanuel Paparella2008-06-27 10:44:13
(continued from above)

India, the biggest democracy in the world is exemplary of how fallacious is such an argument dictated by an animus against religion. Similar to what you have in the US, there you have a secular government kept separate from religion, endorsing no religion officially but guaranteeing freedom of religion which is respected as integral part of Indian culture. It is certainly a different blueprint than the Chinese one, if for nothing else that it remains respectful of democracy and of other cultures and religions which the Marxist Communist government violates, as demonstrated recently in Tibet. So, the final question on the flip side of the coin is this: would you trust a man who confuses cults with religion, who wants to eliminate the abuses of religion by its eliminatio, who achors inalienable human rights on mere political raw power (so called real politik), who wants to give war a chance? I wonder.

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