United States needs to pay attention to political history of Iran: Head of American-Iranian Council

Head of Non-Governmental Organization American-Iranian Council Hooshang Amirahmadi spoke with Trend Persian Desk in an exclusive interview.

The revolution in Iran was aimed at overthrowing the Shah regime and withdrawing from the influence of the United States, but even after the termination of relations with Washington, Tehran continues to struggle in its minds against the influence of the United States.

Firstly Iran made a slogan "no to East and West", but now the country is inclined to build relations with the East. Moreover, there are many supporters of the USA and the West in Iran. Tehran tries not to tend to any of the sides compulsorily, but because of problems with the West, inclined to China and Russia. I think this is just a tactic, and will not last long.

The problem between Iran and the United States should be studied from the point of view of different aspects: social situation of the population, the issues appeared in Iran after the Islamic revolution, strategic and political issues.

It needs to trace the history of political thought in Iran in order to better understand the relations between Iran and the United States. We must not forget that the United States is not the only powerful country that has problems with Tehran. If to remember the history, we can see that Iran has never had good relations with powerful nations. In pre-Islamic period, Alexander the Great, the Greeks and Romans (Byzantine Empire) attacked on the country. After the arrival of Islam, Iran incurred the attacks of the Arabs and the Mongols, Britons and Russians - all these created a negative attitude of the Iranians towards powerful States.

The United States has always relied on its strength, and Iran wants to resolve the problem by any means. In general, I want to say that Iran can not accept the power of the USA as well as the external influence of this power. Therefore, to understand the root of the problem between Iran and the United States, it is necessary to remember the history of Iran - especially when the powerful countries tried to unsuccessfully dictate to Iran.

Another problem of the United States and Iran is that from the point of view of history, culture and geography, Iran was a great state, and did not integrate into the modern world. From this point of view, Iran considers its problems through outdated views, rather than the current existing capacity. The United States does not understand this and pursues policy against Iran, taking into consideration the present reality.

On the other hand, Iran has always tried to play the role of "elder brother" for the weak and powerful states, and this has a negative impact on country's image. Here an example can be set from the attitude of Iran towards the Palestinian issue, as well as Lebanon, Iraq, South America and even towards Azerbaijan. In some cases, this behavior of Iran brings harms to the independence of these countries, and these issues are based on the past historical view of Iran. It is impossible to forget that Iran has always had good intentions. Over the past 250 years, this country has not attacked on anybody. And the strengthening of Iran played a role in ensuring security in the region. In order to coexist peacefully with Iran, it is necessary to understand "the Iranian thought", not only officials, but also all Iranians.

After the Islamic revolution, discussions were held between Iran and the United States, but why were they unsuccessful? I think the problem is in thinking of Iran and the United States. They had a discussion in the direction of "peace and no war". 

Sensing the threat of war, Iran began limited discussions with the United States. At the same time, the USA received support of Iran on the matters relating to Iraq and Afghanistan. However, the aim of the discussions was not to establish bilateral ties. For this reason, after short co-operation the relations between the two countries further worsened.

From the first days of the revolution, Iran showed itself as a standard-bearer of the countries that were against the United States. Unsuccessful attempts by the USA to commit a coup d'etat in Iran further exacerbated the situation. Therefore, Iran has always avoided the war with the United States. On the other hand, Israel also pursued a policy aimed at destroying the Islamic Republic of Iran and put pressure on the United States in this matter. The Arab countries were also against the Iranian-American relations, since they wished to strengthen their influence in the region as U.S. allies. For this reason, the USA continued to pursue the old policy of "peace and no war!" in relations with Iran. But it is necessary to change this view. Iran could become a strategic partner of the United States. This is in the interests of not only Iran and the United States, but also the entire region.

The opinion of the author can differ from those of Trend



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