Who Should be Ashamed of their Government? Americans or Iranians?
In the final part of his recent speech on the occasion of the 32nd anniversary of Ayatollah Khomeini's death, Ali Khamenei, the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran strongly attacked the policies of the US administration.
Commenting on the spread of the Coronavirus and the murder of George Floyd, Khamenei accused the United States of corruption, bribery, and blatant human rights abuses in Minneapolis. “They couldn't and they can't manage [the Coronavirus], because of the corrupting nature of the American government,” he said. “This is the how they administer people, this is how they treat people; They kill people and commit obvious crimes, and they do not apologize; At the same time, they talk about human rights! Apparently, the black man who was killed there was not humane and had no rights.”
Khamenei added: "American people feel ashamed of the American government today. Those Iranians, both inside and outside of Iran, who supported and defended the United States and embellished it, they should be ashamed now."
Comparison of Government Treatment of Popular Demonstrations in the United States and Iran
Khamenei’s comments on corruption, violence, and killings in the United States should be set aside the fact that after nearly seven months since the popular protests in November 2019, no real figures have been released on the number of victims and no one has been held accountable by the government and no apology by an official has been released. Basically, the severity of the violence and the dimensions of the tragedy of November 2019 in Iran were so terrible that for the following reasons it cannot be compared to the events of May 2020 in the United States:
- According to the government’s official statistics, at least 230 people lost their lives in the protests in November. The identities of Police or security forces who were responsible for the killing, have remained unknown. In the United States protests, 13 people have died in the same period of time. Besides, the police officer responsible for the murder of George Floyd was not only arrested immediately but as a result of the street protests, his accusation of third-degree murder has been upgraded to second-degree murder.
- Iran's November protests were merely the result of difficult living conditions, and innocent people who had taken to the streets were outraged by the increase in fuel prices, so they did not commit a specific crime to deserve the government's violent crackdown. Besides, George Floyd apparently tried to buy something with forged banknotes, and in 2007 he was sentenced to five years in prison for armed robbery, although none of this justifies police brutality.
- During the popular protests in Iran, not a single domestic media outlet was allowed to freely report the people's protests. But in the United States, hundreds of journalists have been on the scene ever since the beginning, although in some cases police have treated them violently as well. Basically, if the free press were available in Iran, could Khamenei ridicule the US government today, after three decades of his own tyranny?
- Violent treatment of any protest or even criticism of the government, the most obvious examples of which were seen in 2009 and 2019, proves that the Islamic Republic always resorts to violence in dealing with protesters and critics. What happened in recent days in the United States has been unprecedented in the last 50 years. Despite the institutionalized racism in the United States, the country’s problem today is more related to the policies of President Donald Trump than to the system.
- While Iran has never had an official who dares to criticize Khamenei’s views on a policy, including the suppression of popular protests, in the democratic United States, many high-ranking officials have so far strongly attacked Trump's policies and condemned how the Police handled the protesters
Racial Discrimination in the United States or Religious Discrimination in Iran?
Although blacks make up only 13 percent of American society, there are many who play a key role in the country's economy and politics. But in Iran, despite repeated criticism, very few high-level managerial positions belong to Sunnis, even though they make up at least 10 percent of the population.
While the population of Sunnis in Iran is not very dense, they are scattered in 15 provinces, which make up half of the country. Since most Iranian Sunnis are of different ethnicities, such as Turks, Kurds, and Baluchis, the government's treatment of them is indirectly considered a form of ethnic and racial discrimination as well.
Khamenei condemns racism against blacks in the United States, while his Islamic Jurist (Velayat-e-Faqih) system discriminates openly against Iranian citizens and their Sunni peers, who make up 90 percent of the world's Muslims. The Islamic Republic is aware of the minority status of Shiites in the world ( they make up only 10 to 20 percent of the world's Muslims); yet, it introduces itself as the ‘Mother of the Cities’ in the Islamic world.
Also, while Khamenei expresses his resentment of racism in the United States, our Sunni brothers in Tehran are not even allowed to have a mosque.
From Iran’s Miraculous Control of the Coronavirus to the US Scandal in its management!
The leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran accuses the US of the corruption scandal in controlling Corona, but in reality, the Islamic Republic has had one of the worst administrations at the beginning of the outbreak of the virus. Besides, although Trump's ineffectiveness in dealing with Corona is not hidden from anyone, Khamenei is well aware that the government’s keeping the true number of casualties as a secret is far worse than the inefficiency of Americans in dealing with it. With all its misconceptions about Covid-19, the US government has never been able to cover up the horrific statistics of more than 100,000 victims of the virus; something that is clearly happening in Iran.
Khamenei blames the US for not using the experience of other countries to prevent the number of casualties from rising. Not only did Iran not learn a lesson from the Corona outbreak in China in January, but it continued its flights to and from China and became the center of the pandemic in Asia, and thousands of Iranians fell victim to the regime’s inefficiency and lies.
Institutional racism is certainly condemned in the United States, but what is ridiculous is the mockery of the Trump administration by a regime that is itself one of the worst examples of tyranny and repression. However, because of their disgrace in controlling the protesters, the US will no longer be in a position to condemn the inhumane acts of a government that does much worse, like Iran, in the name of human rights.