Why Was Iran Named in Bush’s Axis of Evil?

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Iran was cooperating with the U.S. concerning Afghanistan (see here and here). Iran’s Supreme Leader and its President both strongly denounced the 9/11 terrorism. Why then did Bush poison the diplomatic waters for years to come by including Iran in his axis of evil? The answer, we will see, is very simple. It was Iran’s defiance of the U.S.

PBS Frontline superficially recounts some events that it claims influenced Washington’s and Bush’s thought that led up to this decision; but its list entirely fails to pinpoint Washington’s psychology, assumptions and priorities, and it’s these that drive Washington’s decisions.

If Washington were a person, it would not be a person you could like. It would have a character something like a vicious gangster. This would be a domineering person, an overbearing person, a controlling person, sure of himself, thinking he’s #1, thinking no one else is as good as he is, thinking he’s always right, holding grudges, always anxious to prove he’s top dog, jealous of his position, always concerned about any rivals anywhere, wanting to be the boss of all the bosses, not at all empathetic, uninterested in seeing things from anyone else’s standpoint, incapable of seeing matters except from his standpoint, thinking that everyone is as devious and power-hungry as he is, ever ready to threaten and bully, unwilling to admit mistakes, and unwilling to give an inch.

Washington included Iran in the axis of evil because Iran had the audacity, and to Washington the impudence and gall, to have a revolution that threw out Washington’s hand-picked ruler of Iran. Iran defied Washington. It sought to be its own power and to have its independence. It withdrew from Washington’s orbit of control. Iran sought to have its own policies. It was Iran’s defiance that Bush could not forget or forgive, because that was a direct challenge to the boss of all bosses, to the number one man. Washington’s the top dog and it has to show it’s the top dog. It can’t let some upstart country challenge it. And in the years following its 1979 revolution, Iran mounted some definite challenges to Washington’s blueprint for it and for the Middle East.

Every item in the Frontline list, be it real or imagined, important or unimportant in and of itself, represents a challenge to Washington’s power and view of the world. Every item is therefore an act of defiance as Washington sees and experiences it. This is why Bush included Iran in his axis of evil.

Washington hates defiance. This explains much of its behavior such as with respect to Assange, Manning, Snowden, whistleblowers, journalists, and others.

11:01 am on June 24, 2014