Sunday, August 05, 2007

Update on Iran in Latin America

The Guardian enjoyed the same irony I did regarding the past "relationship" between the Sandinistas and the Islamic Republic, but they note that Iran really got involved in Latin America by way of Chavez.

Venezuela's radical left-wing president, Hugo Chávez, opened Latin America to Iran by signing multiple accords with President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, including bilateral deals on oil, tractors and bicycles.

"The Chávez-Ahmadinejad relationship is what drives Iran's role in Latin America, which is fundamentally geopolitical rather than economic," said Michael Shifter, of the Washington-based Inter-American Dialogue thinktank.

Mr Chávez has billed the accords as an "axis of unity" against the US, which he terms the "empire", and has encouraged allies such as Mr Ortega to follow suit.

So, basically, all the America-haters are ganging up on America, despite their ideological differences. And so I go back to Zizek, from April 2003.

What I'm really afraid of is that when we left-wingers ask, "is America aware that in this way they are only creating new tensions?" they miss the point. What if the aim is to introduce instability to the entire region and then to brutally impose some kind of universalized emergency state or new order? But even if the U.S. is consciously counting on the global disorder, it will not be able to control it. My only hope is that American interventions will give rise to some kind of resistance. My big hope - as an atheist, praying night and day for it - is that the resistance in the Middle East will not be simply kidnapped by the so-called fundamentalists. That this resistance will have at least secular socialist wing. And I think there is a fair chance at it. Look at Iran. There is hope.

OK, so much for the hope for Iran. But he's only wrong about Iran because he's right about everything else. Unfortunately, the universalized emergency state starts at home . . .

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