Born In War
Growing up in Iran during the Iran-Iraq war in the 1980s was a challenging experience. It was a time when the country was facing a lot of difficulties due to the ongoing conflict with Iraq. The government was struggling to provide basic necessities for the people, and many were suffering from the effects of war.
During that time, I heard a lot of stories about how the West had sold arms to Iraq, which exacerbated the situation in Iran. The Iranian government was also sanctioned by the West, which made it even harder for the country to cope with the war. These actions had a significant impact on the Iranian people, and many still feel the effects today.
What About Data?
Recently, I came across a dataset that sheds more light on this issue. The data is from Kaggle, and it shows arms imports per country. I was curious to see if the claims I had heard about the West selling arms to Iraq were true, and I wanted to see the extent of the imports.
After looking at the data, it became clear that Iraq was indeed importing a lot of arms during the Iran-Iraq war. In fact, Iraq was one of the largest arms importers during that time, and a significant portion of those arms came from Western countries. The United States, France, and the United Kingdom were among the top countries exporting arms to Iraq.
The Impacts of War
On the other hand, Iran was facing sanctions from the West, and the country's arms imports were significantly lower. This meant that Iran was at a disadvantage in the war, as it was unable to match Iraq's military capabilities.
The consequences of these actions were devastating for the Iranian people. The war lasted for eight years, and many lives were lost on both sides. The Iranian economy was also severely impacted by the war, and it took many years for the country to recover.
The Truth via The Plot
But this is all only part of a bigger story. The story of arms imports to Iran is not complete without mentioning the significant amount of arms imports by the Shah of Iran in the years leading up to the 1979 revolution.
The Shah of Iran, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, was a key ally of the United States during the Cold War. The United States saw Iran as an important partner in the region, and as a result, they provided significant military aid to the Shah's regime. According to data from the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), Iran was one of the largest arms importers in the world in the 1970s, with the United States being its primary supplier.
The Python Codes
Below you can find the code I developed to generate the plot I wanted to see to answer my question through data above. You can also simply change the name of the countries in the code and it will generate the appropriate plots for you with a press of button. Here is my code:
The Arms of Shah
The Shah's regime used these arms to suppress dissent and maintain its grip on power, leading to widespread human rights abuses and a growing opposition movement. The excessive military spending also contributed to economic inequality and social unrest in the country.
These actions by the Shah's regime were one of the underlying causes of the 1979 revolution, which led to the overthrow of the monarchy and the establishment of an Islamic Republic. The new government, led by Ayatollah Khomeini, was highly critical of the Shah's policies and the United States' role in supporting his regime.
It is important to acknowledge the role that the Shah's arms imports played in shaping the political and social landscape in Iran before the revolution. The consequences of these actions were significant and contributed to the political turmoil that followed.
In conclusion, while the Western arms sales to Iraq during the Iran-Iraq war had a severe impact on the Iranian people, it is also important to remember the significant arms imports by the Shah of Iran in the years before the revolution. By acknowledging the role that both of these actions played in shaping Iran's history, we can gain a more nuanced understanding of the country's complex relationship with the West and work towards building a more peaceful and equitable future.