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Iran goes back 20 years

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/6596933.stm I actually thought it was one of the more progressive Islamic countries with regards to womens rights and opportunities (which isn't saying a lot I know). I guess this is what you get when you try to rule a country using religion? Funny, because they were doing quite well on the whole PR front recently.

Comments

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Funny, because they were doing quite well on the whole PR front recently.


    Not the same thing as saying they were actually being anything but a repressive regime. Stalin managed to convince many people in the West he was a loveable old buffer whilst happily topping all those who disagreed

    Even the BBC story points out that Iran was keen that they're antics didn't get out to a Western audience... After all, whatever else they are, the Iranian leadership is not stupid...
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    After all, whatever else they are, the Iranian leadership is not stupid...
    Stupid enough to do it in the first place though.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Stupid enough to do it in the first place though.

    Not stupid - the more free from strict interpretation of the Islamic law the population get the more danger is that the current leadership will go the same way as the Shah.

    However, like many regimes they're tottering on a tightrope between allowing the people enough Western freedom to keep them happy, but not too much that they decide they'd rather be like the West. Iranian leaders felt that it was sliding too much one way...
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Not stupid - the more free from strict interpretation of the Islamic law the population get the more danger is that the current leadership will go the same way as the Shah.

    However, like many regimes they're tottering on a tightrope between allowing the people enough Western freedom to keep them happy, but not too much that they decide they'd rather be like the West. Iranian leaders felt that it was sliding too much one way...

    Hmm...perhaps you're forgetting that millions of people in countries with "Islamic" policies like this don't consider "Western freedom" attractive, nor do they want to "be like the West," although most people in Iran are pro-Western and pro-laissez faire capitalism. I'd even suggest that (particularly in Iran) this represents the majority of people, although thats not really clear. Remember that Iranian leaders are also under a lot of pressure from Islamic "extremists" or those who want their country to slide in that particular direction.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    carlito wrote: »
    Hmm...perhaps you're forgetting that millions of people in countries with "Islamic" policies like this don't consider "Western freedom" attractive, nor do they want to "be like the West," although most people in Iran are pro-Western and pro-laissez faire capitalism. I'd even suggest that (particularly in Iran) this represents the majority of people, although thats not really clear. Remember that Iranian leaders are also under a lot of pressure from Islamic "extremists" or those who want their country to slide in that particular direction.

    My argument is a simplification. Indeed many people in the West don't want to be like the West - or at least don't want aspects of it like alcohol related violence, underage preganancies etc.

    However most people do want freedom for their own views (though I accept not neccessarily the freedom for other views,) and material goods (and capitalist societies have shown they are good at producing those goods).

    Given most Moslems in Western societies have managed to quite succesfully straddle the line between being good Moslems and also getting the latest DVD, nice clothes, voting in elections etc I'd be suprised if the majority of those in many Islamic countries have much different aspirations.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    My argument is a simplification. Indeed many people in the West don't want to be like the West - or at least don't want aspects of it like alcohol related violence, underage preganancies etc.

    However most people do want freedom for their own views (though I accept not neccessarily the freedom for other views,) and material goods (and capitalist societies have shown they are good at producing those goods).

    Exactly, what the Iranian regime is trying to do is negotiate a society which encourages capitalist development whist at the same time keeping the "fabric of society" intact, without the "moral decline" that many Muslims see in Western societies. Freedom of speech and the media is the biggest problem, but frankly I don't blame the current regime for restricting this considering the fact that they are surrounded by the US, who have already made their animosity to the regime plain.
    Given most Moslems in Western societies have managed to quite succesfully straddle the line between being good Moslems and also getting the latest DVD, nice clothes, voting in elections etc I'd be suprised if the majority of those in many Islamic countries have much different aspirations

    How is that different from Iran? "Most Muslims" there (at least about the same ratio as in the UK) are good Muslims, have the latest DVDs, nice clothes, and also vote in elections.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    carlito wrote: »
    Exactly, what the Iranian regime is trying to do is negotiate a society which encourages capitalist development whist at the same time keeping the "fabric of society" intact, without the "moral decline" that many Muslims see in Western societies. Freedom of speech and the media is the biggest problem, but frankly I don't blame the current regime for restricting this considering the fact that they are surrounded by the US, who have already made their animosity to the regime plain.

    To be fair to the US Iran has also made clear by word and deed over twenty or so years it's also pretty hostile to the US.

    My problem is that I think however much the problems Western society has is that they're part and parcel of our virtues.
    How is that different from Iran? "Most Muslims" there (at least about the same ratio as in the UK) are good Muslims, have the latest DVDs, nice clothes, and also vote in elections

    I think you're agreeing with me aren't you?

    I'm saying the average Iranian wants these things. the state however has to give them some leaway or they'll rebel, but too much leaway and they'll also rebel and get rid of the current leaders (eg USSR under Gorbachev for an example of the second, and Russia under the tsar of the first)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    To be fair to the US Iran has also made clear by word and deed over twenty or so years it's also pretty hostile to the US.

    And I wonder where that hostility came from? I'm sure the US has plenty of reason to threaten Iran considering Iran's repeated interventions in US domestic affairs and the US constitution over the last 100 years. Or perhaps not, in fact I think, it might have been the other way around.
    My problem is that I think however much the problems Western society has is that they're part and parcel of our virtues.

    Thats your opinion as a non-Muslim Westerner. However, I don;t think its actually your problem to work out, I think its the Iranians. If they want to have a go at capitalist development without secular decadence I think its their decision to make, not ours.

    I think you're agreeing with me aren't you?

    I'm saying the average Iranian wants these things. the state however has to give them some leaway or they'll rebel, but too much leaway and they'll also rebel and get rid of the current leaders (eg USSR under Gorbachev for an example of the second, and Russia under the tsar of the first

    The average Iranian already has these things, and the state is not fundamentally opposed to them as you seem to assume. Its in the state's interest to increase productivity and economic growth, which is what they want to do. Added to that, they actually want to make medium/long term decisions about their economy; hence their attempt to develop nuclear power.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    carlito wrote: »
    And I wonder where that hostility came from? I'm sure the US has plenty of reason to threaten Iran considering Iran's repeated interventions in US domestic affairs and the US constitution over the last 100 years. Or perhaps not, in fact I think, it might have been the other way around.

    Well holding US embassy officials hostage, and supporting various terrorist groups hardly makes them lily white. Plus the Persians had been interfering in other countries as well since before the US existed, so its hardly like them innocent parties who stayed at home polishing their haloes.


    Thats your opinion as a non-Muslim Westerner. However, I don;t think its actually your problem to work out, I think its the Iranians. If they want to have a go at capitalist development without secular decadence I think its their decision to make, not ours.

    True, but I'm not making the decision; as you point out they are. However, if I'm not allowed to criticise their decision surely it also means I can't criticise any other country either - US, France, iraq, israel, Burma, apart from the UK.
    The average Iranian already has these things, and the state is not fundamentally opposed to them as you seem to assume. Its in the state's interest to increase productivity and economic growth, which is what they want to do. Added to that, they actually want to make medium/long term decisions about their economy; hence their attempt to develop nuclear power

    To be honest they seem opposed enough to freedom to close shops, and threaten to jail women for wearing unislamic dress. I assume every country wants economic growth, so I don't believe Iran is any different. However other countries also seem to recognise that with economic freedom comes the freedom to dress as you wish, to accept different sexuality etc

    Now I don't see Iran as the worse country in the world (or even in the Middle east), but I don't think its very good either.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Well holding US embassy officials hostage, and supporting various terrorist groups hardly makes them lily white.

    No, nor is the foreign or domestic policy of any nation/state in the world. However, lets not pretend that this was not a reaction to Western/US intereference in Iranian domestic affairs. Iran has never interefered in US politics or domestic affairs, the same cannot be said for the West/the US towards Iran. And thats a severe understatement.
    Plus the Persians had been interfering in other countries as well since before the US existed, so its hardly like them innocent parties who stayed at home polishing their haloes.

    Dear me Flash, you haven't been watching 300 have you? What relevance does Iranian action before the US existed have to do with anything? Lets stick to moderinity if we can, please. ;)

    True, but I'm not making the decision; as you point out they are. However, if I'm not allowed to criticise their decision surely it also means I can't criticise any other country either - US, France, iraq, israel, Burma, apart from the UK.

    Fair enough, I'm just countering the assumption generally made on this forum that criticism of a foreign culture/state/nation equals our government's responsibility to intervene in some way. Of course its wrong to presume that your objection leads to that conclusion.

    To be honest they seem opposed enough to freedom to close shops, and threaten to jail women for wearing unislamic dress. I assume every country wants economic growth, so I don't believe Iran is any different. However other countries also seem to recognise that with economic freedom comes the freedom to dress as you wish, to accept different sexuality etc

    Now does economic growth and "freedom" mean women being allowed to dress how they like? I would have thought that would make an extremely minor impact on a national economy. Then again, I've seen the aggregate statistics on how much women in the UK spend on clothing, and it ain't pretty. Still, I can't imagine it makes up more than 1% of the economy, and even then, if the Iranians consider that a price worth paying...

    I don't think that women should be constrained in what they wear, and if Iran was in my "juristiction" as a voter I'd vote for total freedom. But it has nothing to do with us, so let them get on with it, if thats what they want to do.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    carlito wrote: »
    No, nor is the foreign or domestic policy of any nation/state in the world. However, lets not pretend that this was not a reaction to Western/US intereference in Iranian domestic affairs. Iran has never interefered in US politics or domestic affairs, the same cannot be said for the West/the US towards Iran. And thats a severe understatement.

    Dear me Flash, you haven't been watching 300 have you? What relevance does Iranian action before the US existed have to do with anything? Lets stick to moderinity if we can, please. ;)

    My general point is that interference isn't new. Iran has a history of meddling in other countries affairs (and is pretty unpopular with many Middle Eastern states as a result). The US has been more effective at it, but Iran would have done if it could.

    Also whether the US has interfered or not doesn't change the nature of the Iranian regime.

    Now does economic growth and "freedom" mean women being allowed to dress how they like? I would have thought that would make an extremely minor impact on a national economy. Then again, I've seen the aggregate statistics on how much women in the UK spend on clothing, and it ain't pretty. Still, I can't imagine it makes up more than 1% of the economy, and even then, if the Iranians consider that a price worth paying...

    I don't think its a coinicidence that the freerer people are in how they can dress, what they can say and what they can do the wealthier there country tends to be.
    I don't think that women should be constrained in what they wear, and if Iran was in my "juristiction" as a voter I'd vote for total freedom. But it has nothing to do with us, so let them get on with it, if thats what they want to do.

    I think the question is whether the Iranians do want this or whether the leadership want it... And how easy it is to get rid of the leadership...
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Get some perspective on Iranian society by watching this:

    http://video.google.co.uk/videoplay?docid=554201962695917482&q=rageh+iran

    "Rageh Inside Iran"

    Best documentary I've seen in a while.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Link doesn't work. Could you repost?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Link doesn't work. Could you repost?

    Sorry, done now.

    Its an hour and a half long but its worth it to get a human perspective on the place.
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