open letter to Mr. Reza Pahlavi
By: Amil Imani
January 20, 2005
Dear Mr. Reza Pahlavi,
"What it lies in our power to do, it lies in our power not to
do." Aristotle 384-322, BC, Greek Philosopher.
I am not a very important man. I have had a simple life. I have not
accumulated a great deal of wealth. I was not born with a silver spoon in
my mouth. I have never held or occupied a position of grand authority.
Yet, I have always hoped to be as effective as my pen allows me to be.
As has been said, a hundred years from now it will not matter what my bank
account was, the kind of place I lived in, or what kind of vehicle I
drove. But the world will be different, because of my unceasing passion
for doing the right thing and making the right choice.
May Sarton wrote, "I would like to believe when I die I have given
myself away like a tree that sows seed every spring and never counts the
loss, because it is not loss, it is adding to future life. It is the
tree's way of being. Strongly rooted perhaps, but spilling out its
treasure on the wind."
A simple man like myself would be happy to know that his efforts have
brought forth blooms of freedom for his noble country. I would like to
think that I am one of the makers of history, the builders of tomorrow. If
I can make my dream a reality, I will feel like one of the most important
men who ever lived.
Mr. Pahlavi, America was built on a dream. That dream is found in the
Declaration of Independence, "We hold these truths to be
self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by
God, Creator, with certain inalienable Rights, that among these are Life,
Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness." This was a great dream. It is
now a reality.
One of the founding fathers of this great nation, George Washington,
demonstrated that in order to make America secure and eternally
prosperous, he must do what was right, regardless of what others asked of
him or the temptations of wealth and royalty. George Washington was a
strong believer in the office of the presidency. After the revolutionary
war, George Washington was approached by many of his friends and officers
who suggested that he should be crowned king. Needless to say, many men
would have jumped at the idea of becoming the first American king, but not
George Washington had spent decades ridding America of a monarchy and he
was not about to replace the system he fought against for a long time with
another monarchy. George Washington easily could have become a king.
However, he chose to remain a man.
A president is elected to the office every 4 to 8 years. Another president
will replace him. A president who derails from the mainstream can simply
be thrown out of the office by the popular vote. A king remains in his
position for life and reports to no one.
For more than 200 years, America has been building and growing because of
that choice. I would like to recommend to you the same choice by refusing
to become the future monarch in Iran. Even if the people in a free
referendum vote to reinstate the monarchy, the ultimate choice is yours to
make. I would like to recommend that you join forces with our republicans
for a once in a lifetime chance to redeem Pahlavi's name and bring joy to
the heart of Cyrus the Great, the founding father of Persia.
Mr. Pahlavi, I want to ask you to look around you. What do you see? Who do
you think those phony people are who have allied themselves with you? I
want to ask you to ally yourself in one of the great ongoing struggles of
the Iranian experience - the struggle for the soul of democracy, for
government "of, by, and for the people."
Do not let this opportunity pass you by. This is a battle we can win only
if we work together. This alliance will bring shivers to the fabrics of
the Islamic regime. This bombshell will be catastrophic and will,
overnight, bring you allies from every corner of the world. You have a
lifetime opportunity to become the second Cyrus by simply doing the right
thing. You can become another George Washington, a man who refused to be a
Imagine if George Washington had declared himself a king. America might
have fallen into an anarchy or been taken over by foreign powers. You
would be living in a different America, but instead, she became the center
of civilization and home to millions of freedom loving souls from all
aspects of life, including yourself. George Washington had a strong
vision. He could simply see beyond his time, something I am asking you to
Mr. Pahlavi, "History is the science of what never happens
twice." Said, Paul Valery. The time and place is now. Lead the way as
a true democrat and abandon any thought of reviving the old system of
monarchy in Iran. "The Winds of Change," should be about
changing Iran to an everlasting democracy, not reviving the system of
Mr. Pahlavi, do the right thing and establish yourself forever as a man
who refused to be a king.