The period was marked by lengthy wars with the Ottomans and opulent buildings, many of them religious, as the Shia form of Islam was cemented in the country.By the 19th century, European influence was beginning to be felt strongly, exacerbated after the discovery of oil in the early 1900s.The junta-for-Allah has turned the Shia rump of Iraq into a vassal state and our president’s “no-boots-on-the-ground” minimalism has led to American airpower serving Iran’s ends against the Islamic State. Through Hezbollah, Tehran dominates Lebanese politics. And our refusal to directly arm the Kurds (as we continue pretending that Iraq can be nursed back to health) drives our only allies amid the Islamic State chaos into the arms of Iran for their own protection.If the caliphate is rolled back, Iran will control the territory regained. The Iran-backed Houthi rebels — fellow Shia — just overthrew Yemen’s feeble pro-US government.
What’s striking is the power of history and heritage.The ferocious orthodoxy of the Shia mullahs of Iran, Gobineau wrote, could be circumvented by, say, a heretical disciple of Avicenna, as long as the man was careful to make every outward show of conformity.With this done, he could begin to introduce all manner of subversive philosophy into his sermons and addresses: Ketman fills the man who practices it with pride.Originating from Iran, he is a devout Muslim and prays five times a day.Expecting others would find it odd that he is both a scientist and very religious (a suspicion his co-workers later confirmed), Vaziri decides to put on a false accent to sound "fresh off the boat" and thus make his religious devotion seem like an irrelevant byproduct of his heritage. Arastoo Vaziri (Season 4–) is a lab assistant first appearing in the episode "The Salt in the Wounds".