• 24 July 2012
  • Posted By NIAC
  • 7 Comments
  • Legislative Agenda

Last week, the White House hosted the first ever Iranian-American roundtable.  This was a historic moment for our community to be recognized as a distinct and important constituency.

But some would prefer Iranian Americans to be locked out of the White House and punished for the actions of the Iranian government.

Just days after the meeting, prominent neoconservative outlets Commentary and Washington Free Beacon slammed the White House for opening their doors to Iranian Americans, and called this moment of pride “a slap in the face to the pro-Israel community.”

In reality, it’s the pro-war crowd that is threatened that our community’s voice is becoming louder and more organized.  They will use every trick in the book, even outright racism, to try to silence us.

That’s why we need you to help show the community’s appreciation to the White House.

We’re sending a thank you card this Friday to President Obama’s top advisor, Valerie Jarrett, expressing our appreciation for the historic White House meeting and to support continued meetings in the future.   Please take a moment to sign the thank you card and to send the message that a handful of neoconservatives will not silence us.

 

Will you sign our thank you card to the White House?

Thank you, Valerie Jarrett, for inviting us to the White House! The Iranian-American community looks forward to working with you.

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Want to learn more?

>> Read NIAC’s response to the attacks
>> Learn more about the first ever Iranian-American Community Roundtable

Posted By NIAC

    7 Responses to “Will you sign our thank you card to the White House?”

  1. Karen Barton says:

    I am very happy that the White House went through with the meeting despite the clamor for negativity regarding Iran. I believe working together is the only way for a non-violent and meaningful solution.

  2. Amir Ebrahimzadeh says:

    Dear Mr. Obama, I wrote to you several months ago, to express my most sincere sentiments and gratitude towards all the positivity you have brought to Washington. I am elated to write to you again, to further commend you on the sensitivity you continue to show, not just to the international community, as a whole, but to the good people of Iranian background, the majority of whom are contributing members of societies all across this great land. I squeezae your hand in support, friendship and brootherhood of man. Your pertpetual understanding of a great culture, is further testimony to your vast open mind and well trained family traits. I am personally grateful to you for giving me real hope, for the FIRST time in 40 years that possibilities of unimaginable proportion are certainly possibilites. I wish you and your family the absolute best in health, first and foremost, and then I pray to the almighty creator to give you all the strength to carry forward with the monumental task of leading this great nation back to its path to greatness. A very tight bear hug and a tighter handshake to you my brother, Mr. President, Dr. Barack Obama. PS: In Farsee, your first name, Barack, is a derivative of “Barraugh”, meaning “Shiney”. How befitting, as you have been shining ever since you set foot into the White House. God Bless You, sir.

  3. Bahram says:

    Thanks Jamal for the hard work!

  4. ed says:

    At the time when the war mongers are trying so hard to start another war, it is refreshing to see that some dialogue is being established between the Iranian and American communities. Also to the Iranian people who oppose the regime in Iran and want a change “war is not the answer”.

  5. medi says:

    thank you jamal and the rest of nica for your hard work.
    keep up the good work.
    god bless

  6. K. Moghaddam says:

    Mr. Abdi, What the Neo-Conservative and the uninformed people of the world in general are failing to understand, is that the fundamental reason for why the Iranian’s Theocratic Regime has been so destructive for the nation of Iran, and the stability of Middle-East region for the past 35-years, has been, and still is the lack of what the Great Thomas Jefferson made certain to include and guarantee in the Constitution of United States; which was “The Separation of Church and State”. He made certain that this was to become a monumental pillar of its foundation and integrity. And furthermore, a measure intended for the purpose of Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment. It was in-part intended to prevent the molestation of the Constitution, and solidify the veracity of its core, and the principals which it was built upon, from any and all foreign sources, other than its people, and then only by the ways of “Amendments” through the Democratic process, without any outside interference or influence. This principle since been continuously cited and exercised diligently by the Supreme Court of the United States, and The U.S. Congress, in-order to prevent and halt the Religious Fanatics from injecting the sort of destruction that has plagued the country of Iran and its surrounding region in-whole. Let us all vigorously continue to clarify to the whole world the separation of the present Iranian Theocratic Regime, from the peace-loving and civilized people of Iran. And furthermore, the world must be reminded that the respectful community of Iranian-Americans, are for most parts, can undoubtedly be considered a population of “Political Refugees” that have fled their country from the tirany of this Theocratic Regime that has occupied and destroyed their land. The actions of our peace-loving nation of United States in these testing times will set forth the path for the future of Iran for many decades to come. Furthermore, it will ultimately shape the history which we will be judged upon. We must not lose sight of the fact that the decisions and the actions which this great nation acts upon, will undoubtedly direct and form the path to the future and the plight of the Iranian nation and its people. Ironically, even in this great nation, to this date the Separation of Church and State is still being tested and challenged, by being allowed to be forced by other Religious States to intervene with our nation’s political process, and force our decision-makers through some of the most powerful political-lobbies, to the extent of forcing our nation of waging war with other countries, to further their cause. Last I checked, we were, and we still are the United States of American, and should never allow this sort of posture and coercive tactics to take place in our great nation. I can state with certitude, that what Jefferson so wisely wrote then, still rings true today. I desperately hope that for our law makers to not lose sight of that precious principle in our Constitution, which will be vital to the future of the great nation of Iran and it’s innocent and helpless people.

  7. Sam You says:

    Good job there Ms. Jarrett for turning around the bias toward Iranians.

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Sign the Petition

 

7,349 signatures

Tell Google: Stop playing Persian Gulf name games!

May 14, 2012
Larry Page
Chief Executive Officer
Google Inc.
1600 Amphitheatre Parkway
Mountain View, California 94043

Dear Mr. Page:

It has come to our attention that Google has begun omitting the title of the Persian Gulf from its Google Maps application. This is a disconcerting development given the undisputed historic and geographic precedent of the name Persian Gulf, and the more recent history of opening up the name to political, ethnic, and territorial disputes. However unintentionally, in adopting this practice, Google is participating in a dangerous effort to foment tensions and ethnic divisions in the Middle East by politicizing the region’s geographic nomenclature. Members of the Iranian-American community are overwhelmingly opposed to such efforts, particularly at a time when regional tensions already have been pushed to the brink and threaten to spill over into conflict. As the largest grassroots organization in the Iranian-American community, the National Iranian American Council (NIAC) calls on Google to not allow its products to become propaganda tools and to immediately reinstate the historically accurate, apolitical title of “Persian Gulf” in all of its informational products, including Google Maps.

Historically, the name “Persian Gulf” is undisputed. The Greek geographer and astronomer Ptolemy referencing in his writings the “Aquarius Persico.” The Romans referred to the "Mare Persicum." The Arabs historically call the body of water, "Bahr al-Farsia." The legal precedent of this nomenclature is also indisputable, with both the United Nations and the United States Board of Geographic Names confirming the sole legitimacy of the term “Persian Gulf.” Agreement on this matter has also been codified by the signatures of all six bordering Arab countries on United Nations directives declaring this body of water to be the Persian Gulf.

But in the past century, and particularly at times of escalating tensions, there have been efforts to exploit the name of the Persian Gulf as a political tool to foment ethnic division. From colonial interests to Arab interests to Iranian interests, the opening of debate regarding the name of the Persian Gulf has been a recent phenomenon that has been exploited for political gain by all sides. Google should not enable these politicized efforts.

In the 1930s, British adviser to Bahrain Sir Charles Belgrave proposed to rename the Persian Gulf, “Arabian Gulf,” a proposal that was rejected by the British Colonial and Foreign offices. Two decades later, the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company resurrected the term during its dispute with Mohammad Mossadegh, the Iranian Prime Minister whose battle with British oil interests would end in a U.S.-sponsored coup d'état that continues to haunt U.S.-Iran relations. In the 1960s, the title “Arabian Gulf” became central to propaganda efforts during the Pan-Arabism era aimed at exploiting ethnic divisions in the region to unite Arabs against non-Arabs, namely Iranians and Israelis. The term was later employed by Saddam Hussein to justify his aims at territorial expansion. Osama Bin Laden even adopted the phrase in an attempt to rally Arab populations by emphasizing ethnic rivalries in the Middle East.

We have serious concerns that Google is now playing into these efforts of geographic politicization. Unfortunately, this is not the first time Google has stirred controversy on this topic. In 2008, Google Earth began including the term “Arabian Gulf” in addition to Persian Gulf as the name for the body of water. NIAC and others called on you then to stop using this ethnically divisive propaganda term, but to no avail. Instead of following the example of organizations like the National Geographic Society, which in 2004 used term “Arabian Gulf” in its maps but recognized the error and corrected it, Google has apparently decided to allow its informational products to become politicized.

Google should rectify this situation and immediately include the proper name for the Persian Gulf in Google Maps and all of its informational products. The exclusion of the title of the Persian Gulf diminishes your applications as informational tools, and raises questions about the integrity and accuracy of information provided by Google.

We strongly urge you to stay true to Google’s mission – “to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful” – without distorting or politicizing that information. We look forward to an explanation from you regarding the recent removal of the Persian Gulf name from Google Maps and call on you to immediately correct this mistake.

Sincerely,

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