Local Professor Speaks About Iran - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

9/24/2007-East Texas

Local Professor Speaks About Iran

While many are upset by the visit of the Iranian president, those with a first hand understanding of the country have a different outlook.

Today, KTLV 7 spoke to a TJC professor who lived in Iran for 20 years about that country and an issue that goes deeper than this visit.

"Strategically Iran is a very important country," said Dr. Manoucher R. Khosrowshahi, professor of political science and Director of Middle East Outreach Program. 

He lived in Iran for most of his young life, but for the past 30 years around the TJC campus he's known as 'Dr. K'. He says the relationship between the US and Iran is much more than meets the eye.

"Go back to 1953 what happened. The military coup by the CIA that started hard feelings with Iran. Then the Iranian Revolution and the hostage situation added up to what we have today," said Khosrowshahi. "Things are more complicated when it comes to relations between two nations. Issues involved in regard to Iraq, Afghanistan, Palestinian issues, in regard to denying Holocaust. There are deeper issues."

Dr. K says the Iranian president is nothing like the President of the United States, and has very limited power. He says the visit to the US had more to do with elevating his status at home, and diverting attention.

"Make a distinction between the government and the people. The people of Iran are friendly, pro-western, and very pro-American compared to the rest of the region," said Dr. K. Rather than focusing so much attention on the President we need to understand that in Iran, ideology rules their political decisions. 

"It is not by logical calculations and all these kinds of things. Denying holocaust or all these kind of propaganda is ideological things. It is not something that we can logically look at and count these things,"

An understanding Dr. K says will help the West and Middle East move forward, "We need to try to build bridges and improve our relations."

Danielle Capper, Reporting dcapper@kltv.com


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