According to Barry Rubin, who has forgotten more about the Middle East than most people (including State Department employees) will know in a lifetime, Ron Paul is Wrong Paul when it comes to Iran. First, what’s happened in the last decade is irrelevant, since Iran hatred long preceded that. The real issue is whether the U.S. decision in 1953 to put the Shah in power was the trigger that deserved the animus that now comes our way. Rubin, with access to key contemporary documents, says it is not. Not only was it a rational and reasonable decision at the time, the mullahs wanted it:
What is especially interesting in retrospect is that one of the main supporters of the move were the Iranian Muslim clerics, including Ayatollah Kashani, the man who would be a role model for Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. I saw how he and his colleagues met with U.S. officials and urged a coup, since they also feared a Communist regime. It is ironic for Islamists to complain about a U.S. policy that they actively backed at the time.
Read the whole thing, which succinctly summarizes decades of Iran policy. It’s fascinating.
And while you’re at it, you might want to check out Barry Rubin’s new book, which got a great review in the latest edition of Commentary Magazine: