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It is interesting to look back at what we wrote on this website in 2010. My views on Iran have not changed. I know many Iranian-Americans, many of whom immigrated to the USA around the Iranian revolution. Their loss was our gain. They are highly educated, excelling in business, academia, science, the arts, and entertainment. Most have assimilated quite well and have been "Americanized" whatever that term might mean. Just take a look at this list of notable Iranian-Americans. It is impressive:
On the other hand, when I think of notable Saudi-Americans I draw a blank. Perhaps it's because they have not really assimilated into our society having been indoctrinated at a very young age into Wahhabism (an extreme form of Sunni Islam). I have referenced Harold Rhodes article, Can Muslims Reopen the Gates of Ijtihad? before in this website as it pertains to Saudi Arabian society in particular.
"The exercise of critical thinking and independent judgment – or Ijtihad --was an important way to address questions in the early centuries of Islam. After approximately 400 years, however, the leaders of the Sunni Muslim world closed the "Gates of Ijtihad;" Muslims were no longer allowed use itjihad to solve problems. If a seemingly new problem arose, they were supposed to find an analogy from earlier scholars and apply that ruling to the problem that arose. From the 10th century onwards, Sunni Muslim leaders began to see questioning as politically dangerous to their ability to rule. Regrettably, Sunni Muslim leaders reject the use of itjihad to this day."
My observation is that Iranians are much more into critical thinking than Saudis who seemingly adhere to constraints imposed on their thinking by Wahhabism...and the lack of itjtihad.
Maybe that's why Trump and Republicans like them so much.
America is backing the wrong side when we side with Saudi Arabia. However, it may be difficult to bring back the friendly Iran that predated the Shah when America, in Operation Ajax, overthrew the democratically elected government in Iran to get to their oil.
The CIA has a term that applies...blowback.