It is one thing for Google Earth to depict
the map of the world as is and another thing to manipulate it. It is one
thing for any business to market its product and it is another thing to
peddle something it does not own.
Google Earth has arrogantly violated the
universally upheld norms by arbitrarily taking it upon itself to name
the Persian Gulf, the Arabian Gulf. With a few strokes of the keyboard,
Google Earth has obliterated from the face of the map a
greatly-cherished historical and cultural heritage of an ancient people.
One wonders what motivated this blatant action of Google Earth: a simple
arrogant exercise of power or capitulation to the financial rewards
offered by those who aim to further their world standing at the expense
hundreds of thousands of Iranians and others to Google Earth to
retain the longstanding designation of the waterway as the Persian Gulf
and delete the newly-minted Arabian Gulf from the map have gone
unheeded, thus far.
Demanding that the name of the Persian
Gulf be retained goes beyond the fact that the Persians are rightfully
proud of their heritage and strive to preserve the integrity of the
historical documents that reference it as such.
For the record, the name
Persia has always been used to describe the nation presently known
as Iran and its ancient empires since 600 BC. Also, the
Persian Gulf is an apt name for the body of water that abuts Iran
for over 2000 kilometers while about a dozen recently-created Arab
Sheikhdoms and Emirates border the Gulf on the other side.
Without disparaging the Arabs, Iranians
wish to retain their non-Arab heritage and strongly resent any attempt
at denigrating or changing any aspect of their Iranian identity. Even
inside Iran, the Iranian people have been constantly fighting and
opposing similar attempts by the brutal dictatorship of the ruling IRI
regime. The Persian Gulf occupies a pivotal place in the Iranian history
The historical and geographical name of
the Persian Gulf has been endorsed and codified by the
United Nations many occasions and is in use by the UN, its member
states, and all other international agencies worldwide. The last UN
Directive confirming the name of Persian Gulf was issued on August 18,
On almost all maps printed
before 1960, and in most modern international treaties, documents and
maps, this body of water is known by the name "Persian Gulf", reflecting
traditional usage since the
Ptolemy, and the geopolitical realities of the time with a powerful
Persian Empire (Iran)
comprising the whole northern coastline and a scattering of local
emirates on the Arabian coast.
It is worth mentioning that the name of
Persian Gulf has been admitted in all the live languages of the world,
and all the countries throughout the world name this Iranian Sea,
Persian Gulf. Even our Arab neighbors do not need to alter a historical
name to have a gulf of their own, because there has been a gulf in their
own name previously mentioned in the historical and geographical works
and drawings, which is presently called the Red Sea (Bahr Ahmar).
Iranians worldwide, as well as all people
interested in preserving the integrity of historical and cultural
records, are deeply affronted by this arrogant action of Google Earth.
Acquiescing to practices of this sort is tantamount to appeasement which
only serves to whet the appetite of aggressors and violators. Precedence
may pave the way for a torrent of infringements on every aspect of every
peopleís cultural, historical, and other heritage.
It is our hope that all enlightened and
fair-minded people who value the preservation of humanityís diverse
heritage raise their voices and compel Google Earth to restore the
rightful name of the Persian Gulf to the waterway.
are a reporter or producer who is interested in receiving more
information about this issuer or this article, please email your request
to Dr. Iman Foroutan, member of the Board and Spokesman for Iran of
Tomorrow Movement (SOS Iran) at
or call (714) 280-3579.