The Corner

The Blame For Bam

Yes, there’s been a terrible tragedy in Iran. But the politically incorrect truth is that this was not simply a “natural disaster” or an ‘act of God.” The earthquake that hit the eastern part of that country on the last weekend in 2003 need not have taken tens of thousands of lives. It was no secret that the region was prone to earthquakes. It is no secret that un-reinforced mud-brick buildings would, in case of a severe temblor, bury people alive. The leaders of a poor country could claim that they hadn’t the resources to do anything about that — that they could not, for example, afford to reinforce existing structures or build new structures that could withstand temblors. But Iran is oil-rich and has had plenty of money to lavish on nuclear weapons programs and on such terrorist groups as Hezbollah. Were Iran a democracy, its mullahs would be held to account, at least at the ballot box.

Clifford D. MayClifford D. May is an American journalist and editor. He is the president of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, a conservative policy institute created shortly after the 9/11 attacks, ...