Why the Left is wrong on Iran

DabaHamid Dabashi in Al-Ahram:

In his most recent posting, AbuKhalil has this to say about Iran: “For the most reliable coverage of the Iran story, I strongly recommend the New York Times. I mean, they have Michael Slackman in Cairo and Nazila Fathi in Toronto, and they have ‘independent observers’ in Tehran. What else do you want? If you want more, the station of King Fahd’s brother-in-law (Al-Arabiya) has a correspondent in Dubai to cover Iran. And according to a report that just aired, Mousavi received 91 per cent of the vote in ‘an elite neighbourhood’. I kid you not. They just said that.” The Iranians have no reporters, no journalists, no analysts, no pollsters, no economists, no sociologists, no political scientist, no newspaper editorials, no magazines, no blogs, and no websites? If AbuKhalil has this bizarre obsession with the American or Saudi media that he loves to hate, does that psychological fixation ipso facto deprive an entire nation of their defiance against tyranny, their agency in changing their own destiny?

What a terrible state of mind to be in! AbuKhalil has so utterly lost hope in us — us Arabs, Iranians, Muslims, South Asians, Africans, Latin Americans — that it does not even occur to him that maybe, just maybe, if we take our votes seriously the US and Israel may not have anything to do with it. He fancies himself opposing the US and Israel. But he has such a deeply colonised mind that he thinks nothing of us, of our will to fight imperial intervention, colonial occupation of our homelands, and domestic tyranny at one and the same time. He believes if we do it then Americans and the Saudis must have put us up to it. He is so utterly lost in his own moral desolation and intellectual despair that in his estimation only Americans can instigate a mass revolt of the sort that has unfolded in front of his eyes. What an utterly frightful state for an intellectual to be in: no trust, no courage, no imagination and no hope. That we, as a people, as a nation, as a collective will, have fought for over 200 years for our constitutional rights has never occurred to AbuKhalil. What gives a man the authority to speak so cavalierly about another nation, of whom he knows nothing?