Marking the National Day of "PERSIAN GULF"
Marking the National Day of "PERSIAN GULF"
The Islamic Republic of Iran designated April 30 as the "National Day of PERSIAN GULF". This date coincides with the anniversary of Shah Abbas' successful military campaign against the Portuguese navy in the PERSIAN GULF, driving the Portuguese colonial forces out of the area of Hormuz in the Capture of Strait of Hormuz.
The PERSIAN GULF, one of the most critical waters of the world, is positioned in the heart of the Middle East. Located in southwestern Asia, it separates the Arabian Peninsula from Iran (formerly called Persia). It connects with the Gulf of Oman and the Arabian Sea through the Strait of Hormuz, which is 30 to 60 miles (48 to 96 kilometers) wide.
Following the nationalization of the oil industry in Iran in 1950 and dispossession of British Companies and discontinuation of relations between Iran and Britain, the Ministry of British Colonies, used the incorrect name of this water body for the first time. In these years, the States South of the PERSIAN GULF, were either colonies of Britain or under its support. To compensate its defeat, the British government published a book by Roderick Oven, an agent of British Spy Org., in 1957 which was immediately translated into Arabic. In this book the assassination of the name PERSIAN GULF began and in 1966, Sir Charles M. Belgrieve, the political agent of Britain in the affairs of PERSIAN GULF Southern States, published a book at the end of his mission named: Golden Bulbs at Arabic gulf. After coup of Abdolkarim Ghasem in 1958 in Iraq and then coup by Ba’ath Party and their claims for some lands against Iran, they avoided using the name of PERSIAN GULF for political reasons.
In 1960, after Iran and Egypt's disconnected their relationships and after the Arab-Israeli war, anti-Iranian actions culminated due to the previous Iranian regime’s support of Israel. This occurred in Arabic Circles and in a congress of Ba’ath Party convened at Damascus, in which participating heads demanded for change of the name of PERSIAN GULF to the forged name of Arabic gulf, without relying on any legal and historical document. Following this, to achieve the political motive, they altered this historical name in the text books of Arabic Countries.
On many occasions the United Nations has requested that only PERSIAN GULF be used as the standard geographical designation for that body of water. Most recently, the UN Secretariat has issued two editorial directives in 1994 and 1999 affirming the position of this organization on this matter.
Historical Proofs in Documents
In possibly every map printed before 1960 and in most modern international treaties, documents and maps, this body of water is known by the name of "PERSIAN GULF", reflecting traditional usage since the Greek geographers Strabo and 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. Since the 1960s, there has been movement in some Arab countries to misname the PERSIAN GULF, and it has become an ongoing naming dispute.
After British troops attacked Khark Island in 1837, the government of Iran protested to Britain's separatist policy in the PERSIAN GULF and officially warned the government of Britain to avoid mischief intended at separating the southern side of Iran. This warning caused the Time, published in London in 1840, to name the PERSIAN GULF for the first time as Britain Sea, but such a name never found any place.
After the Islamic Revolution, followed by breaking relations between the United States and Iran, and commencement of eight-year Iran-Iraq war, there have been some efforts to apply incorrect words instead of the name PERSIAN GULF. Some of these efforts were not on purpose, but however they were results of unawareness of facts.
Though, in USA the geographic and publication institutes have been hardly influenced by other countries, but in 2005, the reputable National Geographic Society, with a past history of not accepting and using forged words in its works, distorted the name of PERSIAN GULF and Iranian islands and intentionally mentioned incorrect information. This action only helped damaging its own international credibility, but ultimately, it surrendered to protests of Iranians throughout the world and corrected its error.
It is interesting to know that Mr. Roderick Oven stipulated in Golden Bulbs at Arabic gulf: "I visited all parts of PERSIAN GULF and believed that it was PERSIAN GULF, because I noticed no map or deed, unless it had named the place as PERSIAN GULF, but when I watched it closely, I found out that the people residing at the southern beaches are Arabs, therefore, to be polite, we name it: Arabic gulf. Mr. Roderick Oven should have noticed that on the northern sector of that water body, up to 1269 km of coast exists with a far larger population who speak Farsi. This is larger than the Arabian population he was concerned about. He did not notice the important fact that this sea was first named by the Greeks, and neither Iranian nor Arabs took any part in it. The Muslims and Arab Geographers learned the names from the Greeks and Romans, and used it in their works, especially that they named Pars Sea, unanimously: PERSIAN GULF.
In the end, it is worth mentioning that the name of PERSIAN GULF has been admitted in all the live languages of the world so far and all the countries throughout the world, name this Iranian Sea, just in the language of the people: PERSIAN GULF.
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