TEHRAN (Iran News) – On Saturday July 3, Iranians commemorated the downing of an Iranian passenger plane by a United States Navy guided-missile cruiser, 34 years after the devastating incident killed all passengers and crew members on board the airliner, which was flying over Iranian territorial waters in the Persian Gulf but the criminal American forces have not even be ready to apologize.
On July 3, 1988, the USS Vincennes fired missiles at the Iran Air Airbus A300B2, which was flying over the Hormuz Strait from the port city of Bandar Abbas to Dubai while carrying 274 passengers and 16 crew members. Following the attack, the plane disintegrated and crashed into the Persian Gulf, killing all 290 on board, among them 66 children.
U.S. officials claimed that the USS Vincennes had mistaken Iran Air Flight 655 for a warplane. This is while the warship was equipped with highly sophisticated radar systems and electronic battle gear at the time of the attack.
In 1990, the captain of the cruiser, William C. Rogers, was cleared of any wrongdoing and was even awarded America’s Legion of Merit medal by then US president George Bush for his “outstanding service” during operations in the Persian Gulf.
More than three decades on Iran is still waiting for an apology from Washington. Rights activists believe the U.S. has not abandoned its double standards regarding human rights.
Every year in late June and early July, Iranian activists get together to commemorate what they call the American Human Rights Week to recount instances of U.S. rights abuses in Iran.
The Week-long occasion marks a series of tragic incidents all falling within the same time frame, killing hundreds of Iranians in the early years after the victory of the 1979 Islamic Revolution. Rights activists say in all of those instances, the footprints of the U.S. can be traced.
One of the most tragic incidents was the 1988 shooting down of an Iranian airliner by the U.S. navy, which killed all of the 290 people on board the doomed plane.
In the ceremony commemorating the event, a senior Iranian rights official says the United States is in no position to talk about the issue of human rights given its far-and-wide violations on the international stage.
The United States is, by no means, qualified to talk about [the issue of] human rights,” Secretary of Iran’s High Council for Human Rights Kazem Gharibabadi said.
Addressing the conference, the Iranian Foreign Ministry’s Deputy for Political Affairs, Ali Baqeri-Kani said trampling on independent peoples’ human rights was a “part and parcel” of the United States’ foreign policy.
The biggest violation that can be committed against human rights is to “politicize” the issue, he said, adding, “Today, human rights are turned into a pretext and a tool for expansion and institutionalization of the predominance of American unilateralism.”
Bagheri Kani is totally right because Americans or better to say the Western countries try to justify their wrongdoings under different titles but if the same wrongdoings or mistakes are committed by other countries, mostly independent ones, they start their attacks and condemnations.
After any incident in the independent countries especially in Iran, the Americans begin condemning or putting pressure under the banner of defending human rights but they are themselves the major human rights violator while they even close their eyes on their own crimes.
Downing of Iranian passenger plane is a simple example out of many crimes committed by the Americans which has gone unpunished and unfortunately the international bodies, namely the United Nations, have not taken any serious action against it.
If one wants to count the number of crimes committed by the U.S., he will definitely run out of steam and this country continues its crimes arrogantly without being punished and this emboldens this country to continue its crimes and even the UNSC is not able to stop it due to its veto right in the UNSC.
The world has to take a serious action regarding the arrogant countries’ crimes or meddling in the domestic affairs of other countries otherwise it will even see crimes worse than downing Iranian passenger plane.
Iranians will never forget this U.S. crime and will commemorate the incident and they hope one day, hopefully soon, this arrogant country is brought to the justice.