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GEOGRAPHY EDUCATION

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Iran

Ten Ways on How Not To Think About the Iran/Saudi Conflict

“Sometimes when a conflict involves Muslims, Islam may not be the best category for understanding it. Omid Safi with a reflection on the current crisis between Iran and Saudi Arabia, and why framing it as religion is not the most helpful framework.”

 

In the last few days, virtually every news outlet has featured a series of stories on the rising tensions between Iran and Saudi Arabia. The conflict by now is well-known: Saudi Arabia executed 47 people, including Shi‘i cleric Nimr al-Nimr. While both Iran and Saudi Arabia are among the worst global executioners of dissidents, the sheer size of these executions was rare even by their gruesome standards. Iran retaliated through bombastic rhetoric, stating, “God’s hand of retaliation will grip the neck of Saudi politicians.” The two countries have broken off diplomatic relations, a tension that has rippled across the region.

 

TagsSaudi Arabia, political, conflict, Iran, Middle East.

Source: www.onbeing.org

This is a good reminder that the conflict between Saudi Arabia and Iran is not just a Persian/Arab, Sunni/Shiite issue.  This isn’t just some resurgence of an ancient battle but there are many modern geopolitical issues including oil and regional rivalries.

Incredible images capture dazzling symmetry of Iran’s mosques

“Self-taught Iranian photographer gains rare access to shoot religious buildings as they’ve never been seen.  It’s a side of Iran the rest of the world doesn’t normally get to see — the kaleidoscopically brilliant interiors of the country’s intricately designed mosques.With beautiful mosaics and stained glass framed by powerful architecture, the buildings are astounding.”

 

Tagsreligion, culture, IslamIran, Middle East.

Source: edition.cnn.com

Rap, Drugs, And Hijabs: 13 Things You Should Know About Young Iran

The future of Iran will be determined by the first post-Revolution generation. Here’s what they’re like.

 

Seth Dixon‘s insight:

Iran’s “Baby Boomer” generation was born in the wake of the 1979 Islamic Revolution took power in the country.  This young generation now is reaching the prime of their lives and has a great deal of power to control the destiny of their country. 

See on www.buzzfeed.com

Crisis Guide: Iran

“Iran poses steep challenges to its Middle East neighbors and the world. Explore the country’s complex regime structure and controversial nuclear program, and watch experts debate the range of policy options.”

 

Seth Dixon, Ph.D.‘s insight:

Iran is in the middle of one of the most important geopolitical regions. One the bordered with Iraq and the Persian Gulf, Iran is stratgeically positioned to have considerable control over the world’s most important waterway for oil shipping and trade, the Strait of Hormuz.

 

Given it’s context, Iran is a country that students should more about than the three main facts that that most Americans are already aware of (1-Iran has an Islamic-based government, 2-an emerging nuclear program and 3-a ton of oil).  This interactive feature is a good starting point with great videos, timelines, maps, articles that assess the current situation in Iran. 

 

Tags: Iran, political, Middle East.

See on www.cfr.org

A Layman’s Geography Guide to the Most Confusing Region Of the World: Iran

Iran’s geography plays heavily in the foreign affairs issues it is a part of, and the policies it makes.

 

Seth Dixon, Ph.D.‘s insight:

“Iran sits smack in the middle of one of the most important geopolitical regions on Earth. Much of its western flank is bordered by either Iraq or the Persian Gulf, and it has considerable control over one of the world’s most important waterways for oil shipping and trade, the Strait of Hormuz.” 

 

Given it’s context, Iran is a country that students should know beyond the three main facts that that most Americans are aware of (Iran has an Islamic-based government, an emerging nuclear program and a ton of oil).  This article is a good starting point. 

 

Tags: Iran, political, Middle East.

See on www.policymic.com

The Corner Where Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan Meet

In the dusty triangle where Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan meet, there is more than one war going on.

 

Geopolitically, there is a fascinating confluence of competing interests at this border.  This is “the scariest little corner of the world;” a dangerous place that is often beyond the authority of any of state.  It also represents (depending on how you divide the world up) at the intersection of the three major regions in the area: Central Asia, the Middle East and South Asia.

 

Tags: Afghanistan, political, borders, MiddleEast, SouthAsia, Central Asia, unit 4 political.

See on www.nytimes.com

In Iran, They Want Fun, Fun, Fun

Young Iranians are tuning out. Of those encountered on a visit, many seemed less interested in religious fanaticism than in sex, drugs and rock ’n’ roll.

 

Often we fall into the trap of assuming that the political rhetoric of the governmental regime is is culturally representative of the people of that country (such as this picture above.  Listen to this podcast on the  Iranian nuclear program for an example of the religous/political rhetoric: http://www.scoop.it/t/regional-geography/p/2016189455/iran-s-nuclear-fatwa-a-policy-or-a-ploy ).  And yet, people are still people, and kids are just kids, even in a conservative theocratic government.

“One of the most pernicious misunderstandings in the West about Iranians is that they are dour religious fanatics…In the 1970s, disgruntled young Iranians rebelled against a corrupt secular regime by embracing an ascetic form of Islam. Now they’re rebelling against a corrupt religious regime by embracing personal freedom — in some cases, even sex, drugs and rock ’n’ roll.”

See on www.nytimes.com

Persian or Iranian? Is there a Difference?

Over the next few months, Ajam Media Collective will host a series that focuses on and describes various elements of the cultural, ethnic and linguistic mosaic that we refer to collectively as Iran…

What is in a name?  We know that there are subtle differences between Hispanic, Indigenous, Latino and Mexican that are bound with the history of these words and how they have been used by both insiders and outsiders to construct identity.  Likewise, the distinctions between the terms Persian and Iranian are often used interchangeably.  However there are political, ethnic, linguistic and religious connotations that shape the meanings behind these terms.  While I don’t necessarily agree with all of the arguments, this is an interesting look at the historical roots of these distinctions and the ramifications of these terms.

See on ajammc.wordpress.com

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