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News number: 9106062252

09:51 | 2012-09-08


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Interview:

Kevin Barrett: NAM Summit Proves Shift of Global Power In Favor of Iran

TEHRAN (FNA)- American Author and Commentator Dr. Kevin Barrett said the United States' and Israel's failed efforts to dissuade leaders of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) member states from attending the Tehran summit and the developments during the conference meant an international endorsement of Iran's position in its dispute with the US and Israel.



"It's obvious that most of the world sides with Iran in its dispute with Israel and the US. Even many of the most rabidly Zionist commentators in the US, like Benny Avni at the New York Post, admitted that the Summit represented an 'international endorsement' of Iran's position in its dispute with the US and Israel, signaling a 'shift in global power' in favor of Iran and the other non-aligned countries," said American author, political commentator and radio host Dr. Kevin Barrett in an exclusive interview with Fars News Agency.

"Iran is currently the most outspokenly non-aligned country in the world. No other country, with the possible exception of Venezuela, has been willing to defy the 'global domination project' as openly as Iran has," he said.

Dr. Barrett believes that the 16th summit of the Non-Aligned Movement in Tehran was a great success for Iran and "a sharp rebuke to the forces that are trying to isolate" the country.

The American public intellectual praised the remarks made by Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei during the opening session of the NAM summit in Tehran, saying that "many if not most of the heads of state who met in Tehran would say to the Supreme Leader, if they were free to state their real feelings: We wish we had your courage!"

What follows it the text of Fars News Agency's interview with Dr. Kevin Barrett.

Q: The 16th Non-Aligned Movement summit was held in Iran while the United States and Israel were striving adamantly to make sure that Iran is an isolated nation. Has the summit succeeded in foiling their plots? What's your assessment of the significance of the holding of summit in Iran?

A: The 16th Non-Aligned Movement Summit was attended by the representatives of 120 countries - a strong majority of the world's nations. The US, Israel and their allies had vainly tried to pressure the world's nations to stay away. So the resounding success of the Summit was a sharp rebuke to the forces that are trying to isolate Iran. It's obvious that most of the world sides with Iran in its dispute with Israel and the US. Even many of the most rabidly Zionist commentators in the US, like Benny Avni at the New York Post, admitted that the Summit represented an "international endorsement" of Iran's position in its dispute with the US and Israel, signaling a "shift in global power" in favor of Iran and the other non-aligned countries.

Q: Some of the neo-conservative commentators claimed that NAM is an obsolete and outdated organization which is of no practical use today. Some have called it a "relic of the Cold War days," saying that NAM is not capable of playing an influential role on the international scene. Do you agree? Is it fair to discount some 120 countries of the world and claim that they do not have any significance in global equations?

A: Of course not. The obsolete and outdated organization is NATO, whose only reason to exist was to prevent a Soviet invasion of Western Europe. Keeping NATO alive today is like maintaining an "Anti-Napoleon Alliance" or a "Defensive League against Genghis Khan."

Unlike NATO, the Non-Aligned Movement still has a reason to exist. In fact, it has just as much reason to try to preserve its members' independence in the face of the US "global domination project" and Zionist expansionism as it had to resist the bipolar tendencies of the Cold War. In many ways, it is even more important, and more challenging, to maintain national independence in a unipolar world than a bipolar one. Ultimately, the Non-Aligned Movement aims at putting an end to the unipolar world, and building a peaceful, prosperous, sustainable multi-polar world in its place. This is the great geopolitical challenge of the age, and the Non-Aligned Movement is taking up that challenge.

Q: One of the key issues which many leaders of the NAM summit, including Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei raised in their speeches to the summit was the unjust, undemocratic structure of the United Nations and Security Council. Even Ban Ki-moon admitted that the United Nation's structure should be reformed. What's your viewpoint? Are the NAM member states capable of changing and improving this structure?

A: Iran's Supreme Leader is right: The UN as it is currently constituted is an instrument of neo-colonialism. The big powers control it with their Security Council vetoes, their bribes, and their threats. Probably the most underrepresented group at the UN is the world's 1.5 billion Muslims, who technically "own" most of the world's energy resources, but who have been looted by non-Muslim colonialist powers and the usurious big international banks. A rotating Muslim seat on the Security Council would be an interim step toward remedying this situation. Instead of fighting amongst each other, Muslims should unite and demand equal representation at the UN and more equitable treatment at the hands of the global financial system. In the long run, a more democratic UN - perhaps even one without a Security Council - would be desirable. But its powers will have to be limited to prevent it from becoming tyrannical.

Q: The NAM member states represent 20% of the world's total GDP. What's your viewpoint regarding the economic cooperation between the non-aligned nations? Can they reach a comprehensive agreement on establishing robust economic collaborations such as adopting a joint currency, forming a multinational bank and other measures which may help them get extricated from the West's economic monopoly?

A: I think the Muslim nations should take the lead by declaring that the usurious fiat currency system is unacceptable and haram. That is, one cannot be a Muslim and use currency created through riba (usury). If the Muslim nations could unite and dump the fiat currencies, establish a new commodity-based currency, and insist that all financial transactions involving Muslim nations had to be in commodity currency, they could pave the way to a more just world. I think the other, non-Muslim non-aligned nations, including energy-rich Venezuela, would support this effort. If oil could only be traded for commodity currency, not fiat currency, the world's fiat currencies would quickly disappear. In the long term, this would benefit all of the world's economies. The only losers would be the usurers and counterfeiters who today control the international banking system.

Q: What's your assessment of the presence of Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi in Tehran's summit? He was the first Egyptian leader to visit Iran after the Islamic Revolution of 1979. Moreover, would you please tell us about your idea on Ban Ki-moon's attendance at the Tehran summit? Israel had persistently asked him not to attend, but he finally came to Iran.

A: The presence of President Mursi and Ban Ki-moon in Tehran delivered a stinging rebuke to the Zionist-led attempt to isolate Iran. Throughout the Zionist-manufactured "crisis" concerning Iran's nonexistent nuclear weapons program, Iran has been open to reasoned dialogue, while the Zionists have tried to prevent any dialogue or negotiation. President Mursi and Ban Ki-moon obviously chose the path of dialogue, reason, and compromise - the path to peace - rather than the hard-line Zionist path of lies, obfuscation, and aggression.

Q: In his opening speech, Ban Ki-moon blamed Iran for criticizing the Israeli regime. However, he never mentioned anything about Israel's repeated war threats against Iran or the assassination of Iran's nuclear scientists by the Israeli intelligence service. Why has the UN Secretary General who should be a representative for the whole world countries and watch over the communal interests of the world nations taken such a unilateral stance?

Ban Ki-moon's speech reflected "political realities" rather than principles. Though Zionist power is waning, the Zionists still dominate US and Western Mideast policy, the Western media, and the Western financial system. Unfortunately, given the undemocratic nature of the UN, Ban Ki-Moon has to answer to the Zionist-dominated West, not the world. He probably realized that going to Tehran was already exposing him to criticism from the Zionists, so he had to say things that would placate his critics.

Q: Different international role-players have so far failed to propose a viable, effective solution for the ongoing crisis in Syria. Is the Non-Aligned Movement able to present an all-inclusive plan to bring to an end the year-long violence in the country?

A: The non-aligned movement should oppose neo-imperialist involvement in Syria and elsewhere. A comprehensive solution would involve a gradual rather than sudden regime change, decided upon by the Syrian people, brought about by peaceful democratic means, according to a reasonable, unhurried timetable. A five year plan might be about right. Unfortunately, I'm not sure the Non-Aligned Movement has the power to stop the ongoing destabilization of Syria, which has powerful historical forces and geopolitical actors behind it. I hope I'm proven wrong.

Q: Can Iran help the Non-Aligned Movement regain the supremacy and importance it had been enjoying during the post-Cold War era? What role can Iran fulfill as the current president of the movement?

A: Iran is currently the most outspokenly non-aligned country in the world. No other country, with the possible exception of Venezuela, has been willing to defy the "global domination project" as openly as Iran has. I'm sure that many if not most of the heads of state who met in Tehran would say to the Supreme Leader, if they were free to state their real feelings: "We wish we had your courage!" Since courage is contagious, we may hope that other national leaders will begin to follow Iran's example of charting a genuinely independent course in the world, and insist on behaving justly and reasonably even in the face of apocalyptic threats by the global bullies.

Q: Iran's Supreme Leader affirmed during his speech to the NAM opening session that Iran is not after developing nuclear weapons and considers possessing WMDs an unforgivable sin. How much important was this statement in building confidence for the world countries that Iran's nuclear intentions are entirely peaceful?

A: In the wake of the Fukushima disaster, which may end up killing millions of people throughout the Northern Hemisphere, nuclear power is being reconsidered by many thoughtful people around the world.

Since there is no obvious solution to the question of what to do with nuclear waste, it is reasonable to view nuclear power as a crime against our descendants. At the same time, nuclear weapons are purely evil, and present a vastly greater short- and medium-term threat than nuclear power. The countries that so arrogantly and hypocritically oppose Iran's peaceful nuclear program all have nuclear weapons programs of their own. So while I admire the Supreme Leader's declaration that nuclear weapons are an unforgivable sin, and find the Iranian government's position on nuclear issues reasonable, I think the ideal outcome of the "crisis" would be for Iran to prod the world to not only abolish nuclear weapons, but also to re-think nuclear power - how and whether it can be made safe for everyone, including our descendants during the next 100,000 years, if Allah wills that humans survive that long. It would be wonderful if Iran's government could sponsor conferences and publications aimed at not only eliminating nuclear weapons worldwide, but also questioning whether humanity's future should include nuclear technology at all.

This is not to take away from Iran's admirable achievement of mastering nuclear technology despite the boycotts, sabotage, and murders carried out by the US-Zionist bullies. But helping the world re-think nuclear technology might be an even greater achievement.

Dr. Kevin Barrett is a former university professor, public intellectual and Muslim convert. He is a member of the Scientific Panel for the Investigation of 9/11 (SPINE), and a founding member of the Muslim-Jewish-Christian Alliance (MUJCA).

Interview by Kourosh Ziabari