Iran’s sovereignty vs. U.S.-European imperialism

Excerpts from a speech by Kazem Azin to the Workers World Party National Conference.

Kazem Azin

Kazem Azin

On Nov. 2, masses of student and other strata poured into the streets of Tehran to commemorate the historic day that revolutionary students took over the U.S. Embassy in 1958 and named that embassy the “Den of Espionage.”

This was the most meaningful message of solidarity to the national conference of Workers World. At this very critical moment, the message is clear: “Iran’s Nuclear Deal” is not a honeymoon between Iran and the U.S. So you comrades, who were nearly the only tendency on the left in the belly of the beast who were able to analyze the Islamic Revolution as a truly anti-Imperialist revolution and defended Iran for 36 years, can be sure that Iranian people have no illusions about imperialism.

Iran’s revolution not only changed the Middle East’s geopolitical and social development. It has also liberated the productive forces within Iran extensively and has improved many aspects of the people’s livelihood. The facts speak for themselves:

  • Sixty percent of university students, 60 percent of civil servants and 80 percent of teachers in Iran are women, while 90 percent of women in rural communities and 45 percent women in cities were illiterate before the revolution. Iran achieved full literacy for all youth six years ago.
  • Iran’s comprehensive social protection includes the highest level of pensions, disability insurance and disaster relief programs. Basic food is subsided all over the country. Housing and energy are affordable to all.
  • Iran has a strong health care system, from preventive care to sophisticated hospitals. Sixteen thousand “health care houses” are the cornerstone of the health care system.
  • Iran sets a record in family planning. All kinds of contraception are available. The fertility rate only 13 years after the revolution dropped from 8.1 births per 1,000 women to 2.4 births in rural areas and 1.8 births in urban areas. (World Bank)
  • Iran, with 233,695 engineers, is ranked third among 124 countries after the Russian Federation, and the United States with 237,862 engineers, as of June 2015. (Forbes, June 9, 2015)
  • According to the data provided by the National Science Foundation, Iran had a 19.3 percent average annual growth rate for publications in all science and engineering fields during 1997-2011. (National Science Foundation, 2014) Iran, with an approximately 21-fold increase in the number of publications in all fields of science and engineering, increased its 390 published articles in 1997 to 8,175 in 2011, and ranked the second highest globally. Overall, Iran’s ranking in publication of articles in all subjects was 11 times higher than the average growth rate for the rest of the world. (Sciencemetrix, 2010)
  • Iran has made great advances in nuclear technology, nanotechnology, biotechnology, aerospace and missile technology, pharmaceutical technology, and information and communication technology over the last two decades.    

Iran’s external debt of $9.45 billion is rather small compared to external debts of some neighboring countries (Turkey $392.81 billion; Iraq, $50.26 billion; Pakistan, $67 billion), and is minuscule compared to the a little over $6 trillion U.S. external debt.

All of these were achieved in the wake of 36 years of sanctions, assassinations of scientists, sabotage and other hostilities by U.S. imperialists and its European allies, the Zionist regime of Israel and the most reactionary puppet regime in the region, Saudi Arabia, a NATO member,Turkey, and the other gas stations of the imperialists such as the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain, etc.

U.S. Imperialism hates our revolution

The ultimate goal of the U.S. is to destroy Iran’s revolution and re-establish a puppet regime. Then, after nearly two years of “negotiation,” what does the “Iran nuclear deal” mean? I do not have enough time to elaborate on this issue extensively but the majority of the ruling class in the United States accepted the fact that they can’t attack Iran by military means, so they decided to attack Iran by economic means.

They intensified their murderous sanctions and started “talk” and “negotiation” seeking “regime change” through economic penetration. Iran also decided to seize the opportunity and engage in painstaking “negotiation” to break the regime of sanctions. So a new chapter of struggle has started between U.S. imperialism and Iran, while the military option is not removed.

Iran does not need U.S. imperialist or European allies. Iran needs extensive relations with Latin America, Africa and Asian countries, including Russia and China. To put this in a Marxist-Leninist perspective, Iran’s relationships with the Global South are of strategic importance and it is a long-term foreign policy to be followed. But Iran’s relationship with the West is only tactical, as important as it may become.

Iran’s leader is very aware of this and this is what he said in his “The National Day of Fighting Global Arrogance” speech three days ago:  “Fighting global arrogance, unlike what certain individuals say, is rooted in wisdom and experience,” and then he referred to Dr. Mosaddeq, who put his trust in [the United States] when the U.S. was getting ready for the 1953 coup against him. Then he continues: “The U.S. Embassy was truly a ‘Den of Espionage.’ The U.S. objectives regarding the Islamic Republic of Iran have not changed at all and [the U.S.] would not spare a moment if they could destroy the Islamic Republic. … ‘Death to America’ is not aimed at the [U.S.] American people, but [U.S.] policies. … The nature of U.S. policies has not changed and the nation will not forget.”

These few quotations from the leader show what we should expect in post “Iran’s nuclear deal.”

Iran’s policy in the Middle East will not change and has not changed. In fact, the Iranian leader did not favor any talk with the Obama administration beyond that dealing with the nuclear standoff situation. Iranian assistance to the Syrian people and Bashar al-Assad has been intensified. At least 25 high-ranking Iranian military personnel have been killed in Syria in the last two weeks. The future of Syria after Russian military assistance is promising more than before and the United States is angry.

Long live international solidarity! Victory to the Syrian people! Long live Workers World Party!

Kazem Azin is a leader of Solidarity with Iran, an organization which defends the right of Iran and its people to self-determination.