Why They Don’t Hate Us

Nov 23, 2010, 5:35 AM | Updated: Mar 28, 2011, 3:48 pm

You’d assume that since the Islamic Revolution gave us the nickname “Great Satan” that Americans wouldn’t be welcome in Iran. But it turns out that a lot can change in 30 years. Teachers still lead school children in chanting “down with the USA” occasionally, and this mural is still visible in downtown Tehran:

IMG 4292

…however our experience was that the moment people recognized us as Americans they would smile and go out of their way to say “Welcome to Iran” in English. Here’s a group of school kids on a field trip who ignored the teacher’s pleas to stick to the schedule so they could pose for us:

IMG 4949

As for “hating the west,” as far as I could tell, people in the cities were doing all they could to copy the west. We visited a downtown mall which could easily have been Westlake Center – three floors of dresses, blue jeans, accessories and even makeup for those repressed women:


…with a fast food court and video game arcade on the top floor that included this popular attraction:


I was told later that there were signs at the mall clearly stating NO PHOTOGRAPHY.

Ooops. Sorry, they were in Farsi, so detain me!

So why don’t they hate us? Because I’m told they would rather direct their anti-Westernism at the British. It was the British who originally set out to screw them out of the oil revenue and who tried to colonize the place. We were complicit in some of that, but we never tried to colonize them – and in fact have welcomed enough Iranians to the US as citizens that most people probably have a relative or friend who can tell them first-hand what we’re really like regardless of the government line.

— And one other thing that might explain it. Even though satellite TV is officially banned, you can visit even a remote mountain village, where life hasn’t changed in hundreds of years, and you are guaranteed to find…

IMG 5266


Ross and Burbank

No Author

Luke got married!

Congratulations to Luke and his beautiful bride, Carey!
9 years ago
Jamie Skorheim

Mayor Mike McGinn shares a handy trick

Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn really impressed KIRO Radio host Luke Burbank with a technique he uses to keep his suit jacket looking sharp even when he's got to pack it away for his bike ride to work.
10 years ago
KIRO Radio’s Luke Burbank is magnanimously offering to take the $50,000 that was raised for S...
Josh Kerns

Luke offers semi-legal Seattle fireworks show

While the organizers of Seattle's Family Fourth say they're cancelling the fireworks show this year because of a funding shortfall, KIRO Radio's Luke Burbank is magnanimously offering to take the $50,000 that was raised put on a pretty impressive show of his own.
10 years ago
Find Dave and Luke on their new blog pages. (KIRO Radio/file)...
No Author

Dave and Luke now have their own blogs

Dave Ross and Luke Burbank now each have their own shows. Find updates from Dave Ross on Seattle's Morning News and from The Luke Burbank Shows on their new blogs.
10 years ago
With Canada phasing out the penny, KIRO Radio’s Luke Burbank argues it’s time the U.S. ...
Josh Kerns

Canada kills the penny; should we follow?

Canada is saying "so long" to the penny, ending distribution of the one cent coin after Feb 4. And KIRO Radio's Luke Burbank says it's time for the U.S. to follow.
10 years ago
Oprah trivia is the subject of this week’s knowledge-off quiz. (AP Photo/OWN, George Burns)...

Weekly Burbank Knowledge-off Quiz: Oprah Trivia

Oprah is the topic of this first ever only Burbank Knowledge-off Quiz.
10 years ago

Sponsored Articles

Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
Work at Zum Services...

Seattle Public Schools announces three-year contract with Zum

Seattle Public Schools just announced a three-year contract with a brand-new company to the Pacific Northwest to assist with their student transportation: Zum.
Swedish Cyberknife 900x506...

June is Men’s Health Month: Here’s Why It’s Important To Speak About Your Health

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, men in the United States, on average, die five years earlier than women.

Anacortes – A Must Visit Summertime Destination

While Anacortes is certainly on the way to the San Juan Islands (SJI), it is not just a destination to get to the ferry… Anacortes is a destination in and of itself!

Ready for your 2022 Alaskan Adventure with Celebrity Cruises?

Celebrity Cruises SPONSORED — A round-trip Alaska cruise from Seattle is an amazing treat for you and a loved one. Not only are you able to see and explore some of the most incredible and visually appealing natural sights on the planet, but you’re also able to relax and re-energize while aboard a luxury cruise […]
Why They Don’t Hate Us