Mr. Obama and his collection of alleged foreign affairs authorities were far too cozy with the Iranians for America’s own good. While advocating starting a war by the US would be irresponsible, it is likely that the former president and his secretaries of state got played by the Iranian leadership. Sadly, they were either out of their league in negotiating with the Iranians, or just failed to grasp the situation.
While the people of Iran might not harbor burning animosities toward Americans, the mullahs who run the place do. And there is the problem. One amusing by-product of this divergence between the attitudes of the ruling elite in Iran and the average citizens is the frustration the mullahs must have over the interest the citizens have in western culture, especially American fashions and entertainment celebrities. For once, Hollywood does something to help our country, even if unintended.
Yet the problem with Iran’s rulers remains. An American and former Marine was tortured by Iranian officials, a clear violation of international law. As a result, an American judge has ordered that Iran pay this man $63 million for the nation’s offenses. Of course, collecting that is another matter.
“Iran must pay $63.5 million to a former US Marine who was jailed in that country for more than four years, according to a ruling by a US judge announced Monday.
“Judge Ellen Huvelle of the US District Court in Washington, DC, on Friday granted Amir Hekmati’s motion for a default judgment after Iran failed to respond to the complaint. Hekmati, who was released in January 2016 as part of a prisoner exchange, alleged he was falsely imprisoned and tortured.
“It’s unclear if Hekmati will get any of the money, which consists of economic and punitive damages as well as those for ‘pain and suffering’ during and after imprisonment.”
As background to the story, “Hekmati, who has said he went to Iran to visit family and spend time with his ailing grandmother, was detained in August 2011 on espionage charges. A death sentence was later overturned by Iran’s supreme court and he was instead given a 10-year sentence before his release.”
You have to admit that any American traveling to Iran is putting himself or herself in great danger. Yet this was a family issue, so one can understand. What cannot be understood nor accepted is any alleged rationale for torturing this man.
“The lawsuit alleges that Hekmati was whipped at the bottom of his feet, electrocuted in the kidneys with a Taser, forced to stay ‘in stress positions for hours at a time, and hit with batons.’ It says he had ‘virtually no human contact for 17 months,’ and alleges he was forced to ingest lithium and other addictive pills which were then withheld to induce withdrawal symptoms, among other abuses described.”
If true, it looks like Iranian officials adopted the tactics of Hitler’s Gestapo.
Iran’s government is no friend of the west. No doubt part of that is out of concern that western ideas might become popular, something that runs completely opposite to the interests of the ruling mullahs. Adoption of western ways would be the end of their rule.
So we can expect Iran’s leadership to continue to attack western nations, especially the United States. They have no respect for us, and thus it’s unlikely they will make payment to this former Marine for the suffering he experienced while incarcerated by the Iranian regime.
It would be a hard collection agent indeed who would be able to extract that fine from the Iranian leadership. And his tactics would probably not be entirely consistent with polite manners or American law.