The Mullahs deflect responsibility for the mess they have made of Iran by skilfully playing the blame game. Blaming others for our problems seems to have become part of our national character, dating some 1400 years to the time when an army of bloodthirsty savages lofting the banner of Islam invaded our country. These barbarians hailed out of the Arabian Peninsula, heartlessly slaughtered innocent people, burned libraries, and took whatever they wanted, including women and children, as booty of war.
My country, the present Iran, a cradle of civilization, the land of Cyrus the Great—the first author of the Human Rights Charter—was ravaged by the Muslim killers. The upstanding Iranian people who lived by the Great Zoroaster’s triad of Goodly Thoughts, Goodly Speech, and Goodly Deeds stood no chance against the Muslim beasts who had been promised by Muhammad: if you kill, or you get killed, either way you will be admitted to Allah’s gloriously lush paradise for eternity in compensation. This pie-in-the-sky paradise of Allah, Muhammad intimated, includes among other things, rivers of milk and honey as well as 72 virgins for every male.
The invasion of my country was only the start of the tenacious scourge of Islam. Slaughtering people by hundreds of thousands at the time left the remainder of the Iranians little choice but to convert to the creed of this cult of violence. Choiceless millions converted to Islam and a few hundred thousand brave souls circled the wagon, so to speak, and held firm to their creed of light—the Zoroastrian faith. For centuries, the Zoroastrians paid heavily in all manners of ways under the rule of the converted Muslims; many were forced to leave for other lands such as India, while others were driven out of their habitats to marginal parts of the land.
Yet, all along many Iranians revered the religion of their ancestors and resented the Arab-imposed creed. Nonetheless, the virus of Islam had taken deep roots. As a result a compromise evolved. The overwhelming majority of the Iranians, who had become some sort of generic Muslims, parted company with the original line of Sunni-Caliphate and adopted Shiism. The tragic history of Shiism appealed to the Iranians who felt great affinity, consciously or unconsciously, with the tragic suffering of the Imamate line at the hand of the mainstream Sunni Muslims.
Switching allegiance from one sect of the cult of death to another did little more than provide a venting opportunity to the victimized Iranians. They could not find it in themselves to get rid of the Islamic virus while it offered them a degree of relief, enabling them to vilify the mainstream Sunnis for inflicting them with the Islamic disease in the first place.
Fourteen hundred years of suffering is far too long for any people, although the Jews hold the record for that misfortune. The Jews have at long last returned to their homeland even though they are still encircled by the vicious Arab Islamists who would like nothing better than to drown every last one of them in the sea, similar to the way the Islamists forced our Zoroastrian people out of the country or the remaining few to the edges of inhospitable desert.
With the passage of time, blaming the historical foreign invaders for our sorry plight failed as explanation. Re-playing the long-ago tragic drama of the Imams’ sufferings did little more than supply a superficial psychological relief. Real new enemy-making was in order to keep the victimization mentality alive and prevent the people from self-examination to find the true culprit for their misery.
The search for new culprits was a success story. The creative minds of the politicians and the Mullahs found grains of truth here and there and made mountains of molehills. Tsarist Russia to the north was seen as dead set to annex much of what has remained of Iran and aimed to expand itself all the way to the warm waters of the Persian Gulf. Then there were the British who had colonized Indian Subcontinent and dominated much of the Middle Eastern Arab lands. Iran was next in their hairline. The demise of the Tsarist Russia gave birth to yet a more virulent threat of the Soviet Union. Of more recent time, the United States and its support of the Shah, who had an amicable relationship with Israel, made the U.S. and Israel perfect targets of blame.
Sadly, the victimization mentality seems to have become an irreversible disease of our people, the Iranians. We have become a nation of easy answers. We ascribe blame liberally and do very little deep soul-searching. We fail to accept the fact that blaming others hasn’t done much to address our problems. Equally pathological is building straw-men to knock them down.
No matter how loudly and frequently Ahmadinejad brays about eliminating Israel and chasing the U.S. to its corner of the world, Iran’s problems will remain and the Iranian people will continue to suffer. Please, my people, don’t let this end-of-the-worlder homicidal-suicidal man and his gang of frauds take you on a certain death ride. Let us, once and for all, purge ourselves of the deadly disease of victimization and join the world in a multilateral live-and-let-live relationship. America is not our enemy, neither is Israel. We are our own worst enemy by remaining chained to the victimization mentality, buying the Mullahs’ blame game, and following the ruling Islamists who are either crooks, mentally disturbed or both.
Amil Imani is an Iranian-born American citizen and pro-democracy activist residing in the United States of America.