In an attempt to backpedal from former President George W. Bush’s declaration that Iran is a key figure in the “axis of evil,” President Barack Obama released a video message, subtitled in Farsi, to Iranian media.
But Iran’s top leaders are rightfully questioning all this talk about change and wondering aloud how and when it will materialize.
Obama’s chant for change has been scrutinized since the start of his campaign, and many have grown tired of hearing about it and not seeing it. Though he’s only been in office a little more than eight weeks and we probably shouldn’t expect change immediately, even Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, is anxious to see Obama’s words backed up with action.
A video message is a good start, although the praising of Iran’s government was a little much.
According to the Associated Press, Khamenei said to a crowd of thousands of Iranians, “They chant the slogan of change but no change is seen in practice.”
Sure, the video’s a nice, friendly way to get the point across. But American citizens and the Iranian government are waiting to see change.
It’s a pretty tall order to fix 30 years of hostility between the United States and Iran, and somehow I doubt that Obama’s teleprompter-read recorded rhetoric, no matter how pleasant, is going to do the trick.
“If you are right that change has come, where is that change? What is the sign of that change? Make it clear for us what has changed,” Khamenei said.
Perhaps a huge factor dealing with scrutiny of Obama’s administration thus far is that he’s talked about nothing but hope and change for quite a while. Though the video message to Iran is a great hope for a better future between the U.S. and Iran, it’s obvious on both sides that everyone wants to see what this change is all about. Without action change is just another useless word.
Iran has been a threatening force for many years, and I don’t think a video message is going to even spark the idea that we can somehow make nice and move on.
Ashley Tambunga is a junior English major from Fort Worth.