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December 12, 1979 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1979-12-12

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e 4--Wednesday, December 12, 1979--The Michigan Daily


'1. LUE-1
The U.S. Embassy crisis in Iran, and
e impending turmoil in that country
craw a number of historical parallels
thich bear mention, and help to clarify
te increasingly complex situation. The
(verse ethnic ' compositions of the
.itlying areas of Iran, and the recent
schisms within the theocracy remind
s, as Professor William Schorger poin-
tsd out during a panel two weeks ago,
teat Iran has come to resemble the Ot-
ttman Empire in its latter stages. That
ig, there is a strong central authority
trying to maintain a hold of the ethnic
components on the periphery.
Recent disturbances in Azerbaijan
and Kurdistan are evidence that
itonomy movements have long been,
tnderway in those regions, along with a
$milar one in Baluchistan. While
4yatollah Khomeini has granted a
teater measure of cultural autonomy
those areas than did the Shah, he is
Bepingto his intention of imposing his
n form of Islamic rule in the outlying
eas. Criticisms by Ayatollah Shariat-
adari in Tabrim in Azerbaijan of
omeini' s autocratic constitution
rposal, and his successful boycott of
e recent election indicate that there
are serious internal schisms within the
dIeocracy, and the possibility of civil
iar in the near future.
'THE AZERBAIJANI population is
evenly divided between Soviet and
ranian jurisdiction, whereas the Kurds
Lave most of their population in Iran,
kith the Baluchis centered in Pakistan.
3chorger stated that the peripheral
teas would seize a realistic oppor-
$nity to establish their own republics,
fbereby they might come under the
rotection of these neighboring coun-
ies, without beingdirectly absorbed.
SIn spite of the increasing instability
}i Iran, we can not ignore the support
Viat Khomeini has aroused in the Per-
;ian Gulf states, who have large Shi'ite
minorities. Professor K. Allen Luther
Ninety Year

r's contribution to the current Iranian crisis

noted that while the embassy incident
might make some nations leery of
dealing with Khomeini in the future, he
has inspired similar Shi'ite in neight-
boring Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, the
United Arab Emirates, and Bahrain.
Equally important is the fact that as
these splinter movements gain
strength, they threaten the stability of
their countries' governments.
Khomeini's role as leader of the
Islamic theocracy, should be viewed in
light of various historical circumstan-
ces. His coming to power symbolized
the ascendency of the 'Ulama (com-
munity of religious scholars) to the seat
of secular, as well as religious
authority. For the last 200 years, the
'Ulama has been the traditional chan-
nel, by which objection to state op-
pression ,and foreign aggression has
been expressed. As Luther notes, the
Persian people have fought against
foreign encroachment since their first
conquest by Alexander the Great.
Because it has been a crossroad for
many trade routes, Iran has been "a
cockpit for great power struggles," in-
cluding the concurrent occupations of
Soviet an British troops before and af-
ter World War II. Consequently
Iranians have developed an intense
xenophobia, with the 'Ulama
traditionally expressing these sen-
The 'Ulama has a successful tradition
of achieving its short-time aims, but
has shown a consistent inability to
foresee long-term consequences and
secondary results. In his book,
"Religion and State in Iran, 1785-1906",
Hamid Algar comments on the
'Ulama's role in ending the British
tobacco monopoly in the 1890's, by
uniting the efforts of the guilds and
bazaars in a successful boycott. Algar
states that while this incident demon-
strated the control of the 'Ulama over
the people, the end result of this affair
was 'a noticeable increase in clerical

By H. Scott Prosterman

power," while "the 'Ulama were to
become partners of the state in op-
pression." This alliance created the
setting for the Constitutional
Revolution of 1905-06, and public
respect for the 'Ulama was diminished.
religious scholars is seen by the fact
that, although the British tobacco

the lack of foresight, mentioned by
Algar, in his inability to maintain a
unity among the outlying ethnic
elements, who helped in deposing the
Shah. We might also see Khomeini as
replaying a historical occurance,
having assumed secular powers, and by
instituting his own oppression against
the dissident elements, for opposing his
one-man rule.

"If the Carter administration is to be commen-
dedfor not giving in to terrorism, then it must, at
the same time, acknowledge the American role in
having put the Shah in power and supported him
for 25 years."

hostages will be tried before an inter-
national grand jury, to determine
whether they are spies. One presum-
ption is that some may be found guilty,
but pardoned, as a way for Iran to save
face, from changing their unacceptable
demand of returning the Shah.
IF THE CARTER administration is
to be commended for not giving in to
terrorism, then it must, at the same
time, acknowledge the American role
in having put the Shah in power and sup-
ported him for 25 years. While returning
the Shah to Iran would set a dangerous
diplomatic precedent, the U.S. must come
to terms with its responsibility for the
Shah's crimes against the Iranian people.
Not only is the CIA responsible for
violently ousting the Nationalist
Regime of Muhammad Mossadeq in
1953, but we have perpetrated an arms
build up in the Gulf, by encouraging the
'Shah to build one of the most elaborate
military arsenals in the world. Though
we do have legitimate economic and
security interests in Iran, because of oil
and its long border with the U.S.S.R.,
these interests have been pursued in a
way that has made us party to the
following crimes, some of which were
recounted by University graduate
student Sadri Khalassi:
" the perpetration of an economic,
system, in which 10 per cent of the
population lived in luxury at the expen-.
se of an impoverished mass.
* the torture or murder of some 6-
800,000 people by an intelligence agency
maintained to support this government.
" a land-reform program that took a
nearly self-sufficient nation to a total
dependency on foreign agriculture.
" putting the nation's oil'profits into
military hardware, which was even-
tually used against its citizens, and
" massacres of peaceful demon-
* creating the need for foreign
economic domination, by robbing the


nation of its agriculture base, and not
developing an industrial one.
While Iran is rightly accused of
violating all creeds of international and
Islamic law, by stoning an embassy and
taking hostages, it considers the U.S. to
be guilty of greater crimes
Nonetheless Iran can't expect to have
its legitimate grievances heard, until it
shows some adherence to diplomatic
protocol This seems to be the messaae

monopoly was ended, it resulted in a
tremendous foreign debt to Iran. Algar
also contend that the "intention in
political affairs to gain permanent con-
trol thereof, never appears to have been
an aim of the 'Ulama." Schorger and
Luther expressed agreement that the
Khomeini government is a provisional
one, with no long term intentions.
However, with Khomeini's attempt to
install himself as a permanent ruler by
a constitutional election, this point is
debatable. Also, Khomeini has shown

Although Iran seems to have become
a one-man theocracy, there appears to
be the potential for chaos, beyond the
movements for political autonomy.
Schorger and Luther were careful to
add that one of the most dangerous
unknowns is that we don't know who is
really in charge of the hostages. We
have heard conflicting statements from
the "students", and the government as
to the conditions for their release. The
latest pronouncement, by Foreign
Minister Sadezbadeh, is that the

rs of Editoripl Freedom
News Phone: 764-0552

Ann Arbor's housing p
must finally be comba



ame XC, Number 80

Edited and managed by students at the University of Michigan

Tenure system needs
some minor changes

institution of higher education
has been the University's tenure
system. It preserves the academic
freedom of its professors by allowing
them to pursue any course that would
enhance educational advancement. It
has fostered the essential diversity of
ideas and philosphies needed to expose
today's\ college students to political
and social values across the spectrum.
Tenure has enabled professors to
develop research and teaching
techniques without intervention by
University administrators..
But, as the Daily discovered in a
recent five-part series on tenure issue,
the system has some drawbacks. Its
faults, inherent in the makeup of the
system, harm students above all, as
some low-quality professors maintain
positions despite overwhelming
student disfavor. In short, they just
cannot be kicked out of their jobs.
Coupled with the increasingly older
age of faculty members, the tenure
system deserves to,, undergo some
Any thorough and comprehensive
analysis of the system's pros and cons
supports claims to its value within the
University. Without it, chaos and fear
would rule the campus, as professors
would have to look over their shoulders
and behind classroom doors to make
sure superiors and peers liked what
they have to say and teach. A professor
attempting to use an innovative style
of research could easily be convinced
otherwise if he or she knew the depar-
tment. was opposed to the idea.
There is, however, a recognized need
for amending the present system to
account for some of its failures. A
major revision would probalby effec-
tively end the idea of tenure and we're
opposed to that. But a few changes,
might make the system more equitable

versity's biggest college-Literature,
Science and the Arts-has no students on
its executive committee. It may not in-
sure that students needs will be given
any more consideration, but a voting
student member on the committee
would symbolize student involvement
'in the process.
Student input at the entry level,
however, does not adequately solve the
system's faults. There is still the
problem of a stale professor whose
teaching methods grow obsolete.
Plenty of professors whose teaching
abilities become questionable survive
many years, exempt from any
scrutiny. While revising the tenure
system to remove protection for those
professors would be self-destructive, a
further review process of their
teaching qualitifications might
guarantee a higher degree of accoun-
A committee from each department,
comprised of an equal number of
faculty and student members, should
study each tenured professor's
teaching record every few years to
determine how he or she is received by
students. That would include, of cour-
se, analyzing student eyaluations and
soliciting any other comments about
the professor's teaching ability.
If reaction was positive, no action
would be necessary. But if a tide of
discontent was to sweep against the
professor, the committee should ad-
vise department officials to notify the
professor so that he or she would make
an effort to improve. The professor
would still have tenure-no one could
take that away-but such notification
from a special committee might make
the professor more aware of the
problem, and more to willing to
Institutionalizing student evaulation

The semester is finally ending.
It is a relief to get out of here, to
be finished with unread books
and overdue papers and enjoy life
again. And over the holidays
there will be an even greater
pleasure-the seventies are
drawing to a close. It has been
hard to be students who have
missed the generation of the
student-to live where activism
has withered away into a monthly
attendance of the political scien-
ce association.
But activism still has a place in
Ann Arbor. It is essential in order
to combat the one crisis that has
transcended the
generations.. .HOUSING.
ples. The median rent in Ann Ar-
bor is 72 per cent higher than the
national average. Ann Arbor ren-
ts rose by 300 per cent between
1950 and 1976, while the overall
rate of inflation for the same
period was only 133 per cent.
(1970 U.S. Census and U.S. Dept..
of Labor Statistics.) Ann Arbor
residents pay approximately 30
per cent of their income for rent. A
1976 MSA study found that close
to 90 per cent of Ann Arbor's
housing have code violations..
Any person in Ann Arbor who
must .confront the housing
dilemma can tell' you that the

By Curtis Dalton
Carole McCabe

the U.N. in their statements on thk
IN ADMITTING the Shah, the State
epartment acted against the advice of
'eryone from academics to the CIA.
enry Kissinger and David Rockefellet
ere the main forces whopressured the
:ate Department to do so. We can only
pe that the U.S. doesn't make an even
yore costly blunder by intervening
ilitarily. This action would not only
>ur similar anti-American uprisings
I along the Gulf, but as Luther says,
it is doubtful that Iran would execute
te hostages unilaterally."
It might be fair to assume that at
!ast a fews of the hostages are indeed
ies. Nonetheless, the U.S.'s
eknowledgement of its part in the'
iah's crimes against Iran would d
lore to resolve the crisis than any
teasures taken thus far. Returning the
hah would set a foolish precedent-an
merican acknowledgement of its role
ehind the Shah, and token compen-
tion in the way of non-military aid
,ould seem to be a logical compromise.
,egardless of the threat of civil war,
nd the option of an economic embargo
bring down the Khomeini gover-
ment, this would seem to bring about
ie quickest release of the hostages.
his is the issue at hand.
H. Scott Prosterman is a frequent
rntributor to the Daily's editor i&
dlord your house is an invest-
ment, while to you it is a home. r
The housing problem may nt
at first seem as crucial as te
issues of the sixties, but consider
it again when you write a $300
check for your security deposit,
and another check for,$200 every
month, while going weeks.
without heat, hot water, ard'
privacy. These conflicts have in
immeasurable effect on all of us
every day. The fact that this
situation is typical in Ann Arbor
should not make it any mor
Established channels have
proven useless. University
authorities themselves
acknowledge that the solution lies
in a return to student activisji.
(John Finn, Assistant Housiig
Director at meeting with Ann Air-
bor Tenants Union, Dec. 3,1979.)
A new activism combined with
the energy and experience of the
past can be directed to solve the
housing crisis which still plagues
us. When return it will be 1980.
What a good time to reorganize
and finally eliminate Ann Arbor's
housing nightmare.
Curtis Dalton and Carole
McCabe have worked on the
VISTA Housing Law Reform
and dishonor to the reputation of
his fellow graduate students by
presenting us as sanctioning th
abuse of power, illiteracy, and
obvious lacking of integrity.
As a consequence of the
aforementioned abuse, it is by
unanimous vote that the StudentS

for Educational Innovation of the
University of Michigan resolve
that: Mr. Robert Milbrath be
hereby emphatically censured
for his discretionless and most
inappropriate use of his office
title on editorial material which
was strictly his own. Further,
S.E.I. will support a movement to
recall' Mr. Milbrath fromi
representative office if such
disdainful purportment coif-
-The Students for
Educational Innovation
C U 1 HQl
............Business Manager
Qal1... Manra

situation is dismal.
Local rents don't have to be as
high as they are now. It is easy to
believe your landlord's claim
that inflation and taxes are
eating away all profits, but it is
not true. Many of the ways in
which landlords earn enormous
profits on their property are hid-
den, and the average tenant is not
aware of them. For example:
* The most obvious way in
which landlords reap profit is net
monthly income. The difference
between your monthly rent and
the landlord's monthly operating
costs usually leaves him/her with
a substantial leftover.
* When rental property is
sold, the income is considered
"capital gains" and is taxed at
only one half the normal rate.
Landlords get additional profit
from other tax breaks, like this
* Another way landlords realize

profit is through "equity." The
tenant's dollar pays the lan-
dlord's mortgage, interest and
upkeep. You as tenant, in effect,
buy the building for the landlord
and s/he keeps the profits.
* The last two ways in which
landlords make profit are really
two sides of the same coin.
Houses appreciate in value due to
inflation and increasing demand.
Real estate is a long term in-
vestment that almost always
brings enormous returns. But at
the same time that houses are
appreciating, landlords are
allowed to pretend that the value
is going down over time.
Depreciation can be dedu ted
from their income and enables
them to pay far less taxes.
THIS IS THE economic foun-
dation of an oppressive lan-
dlord/tenant relationship, a
relationship that perpetuates the
basic dichotomy that to a lan-

Letters, to the Daily

To the Daily :
Mr. Robert Milbrath,
(President of Rackham Student
Government, R.S.G.), having
signed his R.S.G. title to a self-
If-ug- II

generated editorial on November
27, 1979, had, in doing so, abused
his office and misrepresented all
graduate students at the Univer-
sity of Michigan. The Students for


Educational Innovation, S.E.I.,
support Mr. Milbrath's con-
stitutional right to be heard, but
heard as an individual only!
Having used his office title as
part of his signature, however, he
has blatantly violated the
authority of his position and the
honor of the very few students
who elected him into office, as
well as all other graduate studen-
ts at the University of Michigan.
Milbrath's unscrupulous use of
title did not even reflect the
opinion of R.S.G., who soundly
defeated a resolution of very
similar content presented by
Milbrath some seven days
earlier.S.E.I. believes that
students should be honestly
represented by their elected
governmental officers. Milbrath
has done unquestionable harm
LISA CULBERSON .............


It I B LIJII IP 41111 I II I I f 1 f

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