Proving that “an eye for an eye” is more than just an Old Testament verse, the Iranian Supreme Court has sentenced a man to have his eye gouged out after blinding another man in a street fight, according to the Independent.
The 28-year-old, identified only as Saman, was convicted under the regime’s strict retribution laws after fighting in the street with his then 25-year-old victim when he was 23.
According to Iran Human Rights, a Norway-based NGO, Saman claimed he had unintentionally blinded the man with a metal rod.
The regime – controlled by a group of religious clerics – uses a strict interpretation of sharia law of “an eye for eye.” Last year, a man convicted of attacking another man with acid – blinding and disfiguring him for life in the city of Qoms – was sedated and had his left eye gouged out.
The regime’s reliance on barbaric and grotesque punishments more akin to the Dark Ages is a product of the mullahs’ utter devotion to their strict extremist ideology which continues unabated during the so-called moderate administration of Hassan Rouhani.
Since coming to power as a supposed moderate in 2013, Rouhani has presided over the execution of more than 2,300 people as well as public beatings, floggings and amputations.
In 2014, a Christian man was sentenced to having his lips burnt off with a cigarette for eating during daylight hours in the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
In June last year, authorities at the Central Prison in Mashhad, Khorasan Province, amputated four fingers from the right hands of two men sentenced for theft without anesthetic, Amnesty International reports.
These ongoing acts have failed to garner the scrutiny they deserve, but some are beginning to question why Western governments are eager to normalize relations with a regime that regularly engages in such despicable acts.
Case in point was in Australia which has extended diplomatic overtures to the Iranian regime in the wake of the nuclear agreement. On Wednesday, government senators Cory Bernardi and James Paterson expressed their concerns about Saman’s case. Senator Bernardi questioned whether Australia should be cozying up to Iran.
“How can we justify opening diplomatic relations with a country that wants Israel destroyed, imprisons Christians and hangs people for being homosexual?” Senator Bernardi said.
“The world needs to wake up to the reality of what is happening in the Middle East.”
“We should never turn a blind eye to such injustices,” he added.
Senator Paterson said it showed Iran had a long way to go before it would be “recognized and respected” in the international community.
“As Australia and other Western nations seek to normalize our relations with Iran, we cannot ignore its appalling record of human rights abuses and medieval justice,” Senator Paterson said.
The increase in such inhuman punishments, coupled with more violations of sanctions against ballistic missile development and the downward spiral of nearby wars in Syria, Iraq and Yemen are convincing some nations that the Iranian regime needs to be reined in despite the nuclear agreement which the Iran lobby claimed would moderate the regime.
The U.S. and its European allies issued a joint letter saying Iran’s recent ballistic tests involved missiles capable of delivering nuclear weapons and were “inconsistent with” and “in defiance of” council resolution 2231, adopted last July.
The joint U.S., British, French, German letter was sent to Spain’s U.N. Ambassador Roman Oyarzun Marchesi and U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon.
In spite of the clear violations by the regime and the clear lack of regard for human rights, the four powers’ carefully worded letter stopped short of calling the Iranian launches a “violation” of the resolution, which “calls upon” Iran to refrain for up to eight years from activity, including launches, related to ballistic missiles designed with the capability of delivering nuclear weapons in an another sign of continued weakness in the face of Iranian aggression.
That aggression has directly led to the destabilization of much of the Middle East and contributed to the mass exodus of refugees that have flooded into Europe which has helped conceal a reported 400 foreign fighters the terror group ISIS has claimed to slip back into several countries to stage attacks similar to the Paris and Brussels strikes.
This helped set the stage for the ultimate irony of Rouhani canceling his planned state visit to Austria because of “security concerns” since his policies and those of his fellow mullahs have been a largely responsible for causing the terror surge the world is experiencing now.
The postponement appeared to catch Iranian media by surprise as most had prepared special sections detailing trade links between the two nations.
Another area where the promise of a moderate Iran by the Iran lobby has failed to live up to the reality has been the inability of foreign companies to lure Iranian expatriates into going back to Iran to work on new ventures.
According to Reuters, some expatriates whose families left Iran before or soon after the 1979 revolution are skeptical about career prospects and worry that Tehran’s refusal to recognize their dual citizenship status makes them vulnerable to arbitrary arrest.
Security forces have arrested some dual nationals who hold U.S. and European passports in recent years on unspecified national security charges.
Others hesitate because of concerns over the bureaucratic regime, the lower standard of living in traffic-clogged Tehran and restrictions enforced by the “morality police” on Islamic dress and behavior codes.
For many Iranians living inside Iran and abroad, the harsh truth is that as long as the mullahs remain in charge, conditions will not be improving.
By Michael Tomlinson