Iran Returns to Islamic Fallback Position: Taking Hostages
In November 1979, the US Embassy in Iran was seized by militant students representing the new Muslim fundamentalist Iranian regime headed by the Ayatollah Khomeini. Under President Jimmy Carter’s continuing and hopeless lack of any leadership, the Iranian hostage crisis lasted until the day President Ronald Reagan took his first Oath of Office on 20 January 1981. On that day and only a few minutes after President Reagan was sworn in as President of the United States, Iran announced its formal release of the US hostages. Prior to his election, President Reagan had vowed to gain the release of the still remaining fifty-two US captives. Although some of the hostages said they couldn’t be sure, former hostages Chuck Scott, Don Sharer, William Daugherty, Kevin Hermening and William Gallegos all positively identified current Iran President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as one of the student leaders who affected the takeover of the US Embassy. Perhaps desirous of reliving those glory days, while he and his fundamentalist regime are experiencing demands from Iranian citizens to liberalize that country, Ahmadinejad has again returned to form—taking hostages. This time it is Iran’s 23 March Revolutionary Guard capture, at gunpoint, of eight British Royal Sailors and seven Royal Marines who were conducting routine inspections of merchant vessels.
Under increasing pressure and newly imposed sanctions from the United Nations to stop its development of nuclear weaponry and its own citizens’ internal exigencies, the self-proclaimed leader of Islam—Ahmadinejad—has gone back to that which is tried and true for the ‘religion of peace’; take hostages and commit acts of war. Islamic fundamentalists in Iran are calling for the trial and conviction of the fifteen British sailors and Marines and Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Mehzi Mostafavi said: “It should become clear whether their entry was intentional or unintentional. After that is clarified, the necessary decision will be made!” The United Kingdom is demanding the immediate release of its citizens. However, at this juncture, Iran does not appear to be inclined to do so. Instead, it is beginning to ratchet up its rhetoric by calling the sailors’ inspections “aggressive behavior” and it insists that they had “illegally” entered Iranian waters. In order to bolster sagging support from Iranian citizens, former Iran President Mohammad Khatami attempted the same sort of hostage-taking in 2004, when eight British sailors were captured, blindfolded, paraded before cameras and held by Iran for three days. Note: Of course, this was illegal under Geneva Convention rules. But, as we already know, Islamic countries are exempted from following them.
Khatami’s ploy didn’t work and he was replaced by the even more hard-line former mayor of Tehran Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Apparently he believes that, this time, hostage taking will work to strengthen his own all-time-low popularity and stop the ever-rising protests against him at home. Ahmadinejad has publicly stated that he has met with the prophesied “redeemer” of Islam—the 12th Imam Mahdi. In order to pave the way for this leader, the current Iranian president has stated that the only way to ‘bring him back’, is to defeat the West by whatever means are necessary. In 2005, Ahmadinejad said: “And God willing, with the force of God behind it [Iran], we shall soon experience a world without the United States and Zionism!” It seems that Ahmadinejad believes that taking western hostages will not only strengthen his position with Iran’s citizens but, will enhance his place in the 12th Mahdi’s regime. Taking him at his word, Ahmadinejad is planning the destruction of the West and all that is non-Muslim and is determined to have those plans succeed. Yet, too many in western democratic countries seem equally determined to dismiss Ahmadinejad’s comments and proclamations. Note: An inane resolve to ignore “uncomfortable feelings” has become all too pervasive in multiple politically-correct societies. These same societal members also hold that denying unpleasant truths will, eventually, make them go away. It won’t.
Therefore, Ahmadinejad and other Islamic terrorists’ rhetoric and actions will become more pronounced and severe while the PC-crowd becomes more acquiescent to their demands. And fearful of blaming the true culprits, these appeasers blame themselves and their own governments. Then, continuing to ignore history, the submissives actually praise the oppressors! In 2005, Hollywood’s representative to Iran Sean Penn not only praised that country but asked: “If the United States has nuclear weapons, then why can't Iran have nuclear weapons?” To say that these people are clueless is too kind. In a war of words or an actual war, radical Islam understands only the follow-up of aggressive and unequivocal actions. Whether we like it or not, those actions must often be brutal against barbaric societies. One of the greatest leaders in history, Winston Churchill, noted the following: “When nations are strong, they are not always just and when they wish to be just, they are no longer strong. Victory will never be found by taking the line of least resistance. I cannot subscribe to the idea that it might be possible to dig ourselves in and make no preparations for anything else than passive defense. It is the theory of the turtle. How many wars have been averted by patience and good will?” They are equally as applicable today, as they were before and during World War II. Perhaps it’s time that we heard them again.
Sher Zieve is a long-time syndicated columnist who generally writes columns of a politically Conservative and Constitutional nature. She also interviews notable people with an interesting and/or newsworthy story to tell. These include politicians, writers, activists and others in the news. Her work has been and continues to be carried by both national and international publications. Sher appears regularly on national talk shows.