HuffPo #HotTake: Donald Trump Is Just Like the Iranian Mullahs

Posted at 5:58 pm on December 31, 2017 by streiff


One of the few things the internet can do better than anything else is provide an outlet for some of the most profoundly stupid ideas that have ever been voiced.

You really have to read this to appreciate just how mentally and emotionally damaged the author is (but hey, he was voted “most eligible bachelor by OUT magazine” so there is a clinical explanation for his derangement).

He starts off by miscasting the entire premise of the 1979 Iranian Revolution which was a return to Islamic purity. And he creates what appears to be a totally fictitious event: the “Iranian Women’s Uprising.”

If the story sounds a lot like the Women’s March on D.C., that’s because the parallels between the rise of Donald Trump in 2016 and Khomeini in 1979 are uncanny. While the history of the Islamic Revolution in Iran is well-documented, the “Iranian Women’s Uprising” that came just weeks after Khomeini took power is scarcely told of. The uprising has become the stuff of lore among Iranian and feminist historians, as it challenges popularly-held notions that the country lacks a feminist or progressive political and/or ideological presence. However, due to the country’s practice of censoring potentially seditious information, there are limited resources available about the historic event.

Nevertheless, the story goes that on March 8, 1979, women protested the newly-installed Ayatollah for six consecutive days over rumors that he planned to make wearing the hijab mandatory, despite his previous assurances that civil protections would not be affected.

The best you can say about this “Uprising” is that it was short-lived and only involved a relatively small number of secular and Westernized women. The vast majority of Iranian women wore the chador and hijab despite the efforts of the Shah to suppress it.

Where this article becomes incredibly bizarre is when he casts Trump and Pence as American ayatollahs.

To this historical illiterate, the return of Khomeini from exile in Paris and the election of Donald Trump is the same:

Just days after the country’s new government assumed power, hundreds of thousands of women took to the streets to march in protest. The unprecedented demonstrations erupted as a result of rumors that the new regime planned to implement anti-women laws, despite having risen to power under the guise of a populist, nationalist message that promised to drain the swamp, so to speak, of the nation’s elitist forces, excesses, and perceived corruption.

Indeed, the power dynamics of the country had suddenly shifted in a surprising conservative backlash fueled by support among uneducated, working-class males and aided by a fractured left-wing composed of socialists, social democrats, and liberals who failed to take the threat of a potentially fascist new government seriously. Many citizens simply felt it was impossible…until it became inevitable.

After the dust settled, critics alleged that vote-rigging and the dissemination of fake news had helped usher in the new administration and produce a conservative-controlled legislature that would act as a safety net.

This is so freakin wrong that it isn’t even wrong. Khomeini came to power via a soft coup. The Shah, abandoned by James Earl Carter, left the country. There was no vote. Khomeini was supported by the majority of Iranians. There are no parallels, direct or indirect, to the events. And comparing Iranian women who saw their rights being stripped away to a bunch of hirsute harpies wearing pussy-hats is simply obscene.