There’s an old Aesop fable about a little shepherd boy who cried, “Wolf!” He grew bored out on the hillside watching his sheep, so to amuse himself he cried, “Wolf, wolf!” and the villagers ran out of their houses to chase the wolf away, only to discover there was no wolf and the little shepherd boy was lying. After a while, the wolf really did come and attack the sheep, but when the boy shouted, “Wolf, wolf!” the villagers assumed he was lying again, and took no notice.
So, what really happened to Shahram Amiri?
According to the American government, the CIA persuaded him to defect. They handed him a large sum of money, whereupon he willingly gave up the secrets of Iran’s nuclear program, but then had a ‘breakdown’ and decided to return to Iran.
Mister Amiri says he was kidnapped by the CIA, held under guard and tortured, until finally he escaped into the shelter of the Pakistani embassy in Washington.
There was a time when the American version would have been accepted by most Westerners as the more plausible explanation. After all, ‘Home of the Brave, Land of the Free’, actually meant something once.
9/11 changed all that. Or, to be more precise, the barbaric and dictatorial response of successive American Administrations to the 9/11 attacks blew away any of their remaining credibility.
We now know that the American government routinely kidnaps, holds people without charge, tortures and humiliates them, frequently murders without compunction, and all the time denies vehemently it is doing so.
Why, then, should we believe what they tell us about Shahram Amiri?
Frankly, his version of events is considerably more plausible.
The American government has cried, “Wolf!” too often.
Filed under: Shahram Amiri