Thursday, August 7, 2008

Iran and the Code of the West

Writers in article after article present the Iranian problem with considerable angst but no recommendations or solutions. Lots of if/then arguments, but no recommendations. Is there a symbol from our tradition that puts the Iranian problem in more coherent terms? Maybe:

You are the local Sheriff and you have five deputies. You have done a good job of keeping order so far, but Lobo up in the mountains has announced far and wide that he’s had enough of you. He is calling bandits and train robbers from miles around to join him, to build up his strength. When it is strong enough he intends, so he often said, to ride rough-shod through your town. The banker and other store owners are wringing their hands. “What’s it going to be, Will?” “What can you do?”

Well, Will, you know what you can do. You can ride up there and wipe Lobo out before he gets too strong. Do it now while you are able, or wait and procrastinate until Lobo is too strong for you. What’s it going to be, Will?

Yeah, Betsy, the local school teacher hates violence and may not talk to you again if you do this Will, but you know she doesn’t understand the situation. Lobo and his gang will make her life hell if he gets his way. Can you let yourself be influenced by Betsy? She means well, but you know what will happen if Lobo isn’t stopped. So, what’s it going to be, Will?

Lawrence Helm

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