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Lilac Sigan Headshot

It's High Time to Get Aligned

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Who was it that said there are no coincidences in this world? He may have been right. So right, that sometimes you have to blind not to see contradicting coincidences when they meet eye to eye.

On Monday, the Non-Aligned Movement summit began in Iran, with "special guests" from around the world, including U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki Moon. Funny how it was also the day that the Gulf Business review aired a list of the 30 top achievers under 30 years old in the Arab world. The hot list received a lot of attention on Twitter, and there's no wonder at all -- these achievers are young, good-looking professionals, and they all have that spark in their eye. Their life choices are quite clear -- they cannot be described as "non-aligned."

What does it mean, to be non-aligned? That's a very good question, especially if it involves the U.N., which fed us enough cover-ups over the years. Just to name a few -- Syria was a respected member of the U.N. Security Council for years, and Qaddafi was a major human rights activist with a yearly prize given out in his name.

Regretfully, not everyone has had enough of this charade, and if you need some proof, it's not in the pudding but in the summit in Tehran. Iran is hungry for legitimacy and support despite the just sanctions imposed on it by the free world, and by showing up at the summit, that's exactly what these "non-aligned" countries did.

The Non-Aligned Movement consists of 120 countries, most of them Arab or third-world. It was established during the cold war in the '60s, but the Cold War has ended long ago, so could it be that this movement's whole definition should be changed?

It's very comfortable to aspire to the Western way of life and achievements with one hand, and to support Iran's PR against the U.S. with the left one. But it just doesn't work that way. There are times in which you simply need to take a stand.

For years Iran has been playing a game of smoke and mirrors with its nuclear ambitions,
supposedly "for peace purposes." Now that the free world has understood the danger and is united against it with sanctions, Iran's goal is to form a crack in the wall. But if you want the sanctions against Iran to work, you have to decide which side you're on. So which will it be: the side of darkness, stoning, torture, terror, and lies covering up the horror regime? Or the side of personal freedom, free trade and aspirations for peace and prosperity?

If these countries aspire for a better economy and successful careers, they can't support the people who are out to hurt this way of life, in the Iranian regime.

Ban Ki Moon is not alone in refusing to take a real stand -- the newly elected Egyptian president, Morsi, also arrived in Tehran to smile at Ahmedinijad and his lies, and the two Palestinian leaders -- Abbas and Hanniya -- actually fought over the so-called privilege of being the honorable representative at this not-so-honorable gathering, that is only meant to blow some more smoke into the world's eyes.

The real problem is that we've all grown so accustomed to the hypocrisy of the U.N., that we somehow believe people can stick to their double standards whenever they like.

Regretfully, it just isn't so. There are times in life when you have to align. Are you supporting the world sanctions against Iran, in a big united effort to prevent a disastrous war? Or are you a crack in the fence built around Iran so it'll abandon its crazy ambitions to dominate the
world?

And no, you can't choose both, even if you think you can. By choosing "ambivalence," you're damaging the firm alignment of the western world. It just won't be the same if God forbid Iran gets its way. There will be no thriving economy or personal careers to write about in fancy magazines. So if you're not aligned with the free countries on this one, at least don't call yourself "non-aligned."