Omid Memarian

Sunday, March 02, 2008

McCain Uses the Fear Factor in Earning His Votes
(First Published at California News Service)

Ahmadinejad in Baghdad

During the past few months, Senator McCain has been the only presidential candidate to defend the presence of U.S. troops in Iraq, in response to fear that Iran will destabilize Iraq after their departure. But the truth is that despite all the accusations by U.S. officials of Iran's involvement in insurgency in Iraq, there has been no solid evidence to prove this claim.

In my humble opinion, there is no country among Iraq's neighbors that enjoys stability and peace in Iraq more than Iran.Simply because Iranians fear that widespread violence in Iraq can easily speared in Iran and harm the country's stability.

On the other side, the U.S. has given Iranians the best service they could ever expect by diminishing Iran's enemies, the Taliban on the East side and Saddam Hussein to the West. (Don't miss this video)

The point is that McCain, who has not been able to make his case concerning domestic issues - and particularly the U.S. economy - is manipulating the reality of what's going on in the region to scare voters and get their support.

Ahmadinejad's historical visit to Baghdad shows that McCain's argument about Iran is not valid. Here is an excerpt from Reuters' report on this trip that delicately describes the Iran-Iraq relationship:

More... His warm reception, in which he was hugged and kissed by Iraqi officials and presented with flowers by children, was Iraq's first full state welcome for any leader since the U.S.-led invasion to topple Saddam Hussein in 2003.

His visit not only marks the cementing in ties between the neighbors, both run by Si'ite majorities, but is seen as a show of support for the Iraqi government and an act of defiance against Iran's longtime enemy, the United States, which has over 150,000 troops Iraq.

To Iraq's neighbors, Ahmadinejad's visit underlines that a non-Arab country has kept its embassies open since the fall of Saddam and its leader visits Iraq," Iraqi Deputy Foreign Minister Labeed Abbawi told Reuters.

Many Arab diplomats have stayed away after a suicide car bomber attacked the Jordanian embassy in August 2003, killing 17 people. Militants have killed several other diplomats, including an Egyptian who had been sent to head Cairo's mission in 2005.

"Not a single Arab country has an embassy in Iraq and not one of their leaders has visited, despite Iraq being an Arab country," Abbawi said.

(Photo Description: I was chatting with my friend, who is a German journalist and was in Talibani's palace in Baghdad today. I asked her to send me a picture of President Ahmadinejad's meeting with President Talibani. She sent me a picture taken by Iraqi photographer Jamal Penjweny.)
(First Published at California News Service)


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