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  1. 19 Jun '09 16:21 / 1 edit
    http://www.economist.com/opinion/displaystory.cfm?story_id=13856262

    It looks increasingly as though the government will have to crack down or back down


    Watching Iranians pour onto the streets to demand change, those in the outside world who wish Iran well must hope fervently that it comes. Iranians are too sophisticated to be ruled for ever by a clutch of old men in turbans. The regime has been illiberal and authoritarian. It is often vicious in its suppression of opponents and its disregard for human rights. Iran has the highest rate of judicial executions per head in the world. Women are second-class citizens. Even so, Iran is nothing like the totalitarian, mass-murdering regimes of the Soviet Union or Nazi Germany. However many votes he rigged, Mr Ahmadinejad has a big constituency behind him.



    It makes me wonder whether the events we have seen this week will ultimately lead to some change in Iran.

    Surely the protests will have some positive effect on the Iranian theocracy.
  2. 19 Jun '09 19:38 / 1 edit
    a lot will depend on whether the protesters become violent or chaotic. If that happens, it will be easy for the government to roll out the tanks and claim they need to restore order. But if the protesters can maintain a huge, yet peaceful and "very orderly" protest, it will be hard for the government to crack down without it looking like the height of barbarism.

    There are probably a lot of people in Iran who like the old ways, are wary about "western values", and who believe that the theocrats are wise men of faith worthy of the highest respect. But if the protesters look orderly and decent, while those "wise men" look like monsters slaughtering innocent people, many of those traditionalists will start siding with the reformers.

    It's also important that the US (and other nations) avoid getting involved right now, as it would make it much easier for the theocrats to persuade the people that this protest is nothing more than a "western plot to destroy Iran"
  3. 19 Jun '09 20:13 / 3 edits
    Originally posted by Melanerpes
    a lot will depend on whether the protesters become violent or chaotic. If that happens, it will be easy for the government to roll out the tanks and claim they need to restore order. But if the protesters can maintain a huge, yet peaceful and "very orderly" protest, it will be hard for the government to crack down without it looking like the height of bar uade the people that this protest is nothing more than a "western plot to destroy Iran"
    I say protest 24/7 365 days of the year and see where that gets them. Then when they are done and get results I will personally go over there and recruit them to come protest in Washington. We will just continue from country to country until we clean up everyones messes.
  4. 19 Jun '09 23:04
    Originally posted by whodey
    I say protest 24/7 365 days of the year and see where that gets them. Then when they are done and get results I will personally go over there and recruit them to come protest in Washington. We will just continue from country to country until we clean up everyones messes.
    Why would they care about America's issues? Recruit people to protest from within America. Come up with a message that will attract a strong majority, will win elections, and will pressure the president and Congress accordingly.
  5. 20 Jun '09 00:01
    Originally posted by Melanerpes
    Why would they care about America's issues? Recruit people to protest from within America. Come up with a message that will attract a strong majority, will win elections, and will pressure the president and Congress accordingly.
    Why? I'll pay them if I have to so long as they get results!!
  6. 20 Jun '09 16:13
    Originally posted by Melanerpes
    a lot will depend on whether the protesters become violent or chaotic. If that happens, it will be easy for the government to roll out the tanks and claim they need to restore order. But if the protesters can maintain a huge, yet peaceful and "very orderly" protest, it will be hard for the government to crack down without it looking like the height of bar ...[text shortened]... uade the people that this protest is nothing more than a "western plot to destroy Iran"
    I agree with you, however, as we can see:
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/8110582.stm

    It looks like the protesters are not all that peaceful, a reasonable person would see these protests as anarchy rather than a valid protest for change.
    The fact that they chant "death to the dictator" doesn't help either, Ahmadinejad can be evil, or extremist, but he isn't a dictator, its not like he seized power through force.

    It's also important that the US (and other nations) avoid getting involved right now, as it would make it much easier for the theocrats to persuade the people that this protest is nothing more than a "western plot to destroy Iran"

    That's true. The US and its allies should stay out of this one, otherwise it will be easy for the regime to accuse the US of stirring up trouble in Iran.
    And yet, some people hammer Obama for not saying anough in support for the protesters, I think he's doing the right thing staying quiet.
  7. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    20 Jun '09 16:26
    I wonder if Mousavi, like Ahmadinejad, believes that Israel will eventually 'disappear from the pages of history', like the U.S.S.R. did.
  8. 20 Jun '09 16:33
    Originally posted by FMF
    I wonder if Mousavi, like Ahmadinejad, believes that Israel will eventually 'disappear from the pages of history', like the U.S.S.R. did.
    That I don't know, but his approach would certainly be a big improvement if compared to Ahmadinejad's.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mousavi

    "Goals for presidential term

    Mousavi has on numerous occasions indicated his wish to change the constitution in order to remove the existing ban on the private ownership of television stations (currently all Iranian television stations are state-owned), as well as transfer the control of the law-enforcement forces to the President (so that they represent the people, since the people directly elect the President through popular vote) from the Supreme Leader"

    "Foreign policies

    Mousavi has directly addressed activating foreign policy to boost national interest by reducing tensions with other nations. This includes negotiating with U.S. President Barack Obama if "his actions are in keeping with his words". His other notable assertion was calling Ahmadinejad's attitude of the Holocaust ("a myth" wrong. Mousavi condemned the killing of Jews in the Holocaust, a much different stance than that of Ahmadinejad"

    Wikipedia's information on Mousavi's policies show how his approach seems to be more reasonable.
  9. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    20 Jun '09 16:38
    Originally posted by generalissimo
    Wikipedia's information on Mousavi's policies show how his approach seems to be more reasonable.
    I wouldn't rely on wikipedia on an issue like this, at a time like this.
  10. 20 Jun '09 16:47
    Originally posted by FMF
    I wouldn't rely on wikipedia on an issue like this, at a time like this.
    well, its the closest thing we can get.

    We barely know for sure what's happening in Iran thanks to the ban on foreigners reporting.

    I guess we have to do what CNN is doing, rely on twitter.
  11. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    20 Jun '09 16:52 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by generalissimo
    well, its the closest thing we can get.
    Wikipedia? Don't be silly. Don't you know what wikipedia is? It has its uses but this is exactly the time/situation when it cannot be trusted.
  12. 20 Jun '09 17:30
    Originally posted by FMF
    Wikipedia? Don't be silly. Don't you know what wikipedia is? It has its uses but this is exactly the time/situation when it cannot be trusted.
    How so?

    The link I posted earlier had footnotes at the end, which back up the info on the page.

    Its not all made up.
  13. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    20 Jun '09 17:47
    Originally posted by generalissimo
    How so?If yo
    If you don't know what I am referring to, it doesn't matter.
  14. 20 Jun '09 17:49
    Originally posted by FMF
    If you don't know what I am referring to, it doesn't matter.
    my point is that it has links to back it up.

    what exactly are you referring to?
  15. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    20 Jun '09 17:53
    Originally posted by generalissimo
    my point is that it has links to back it up.

    what exactly are you referring to?
    Just forget it. You think wikipedia is the "closest" you can get to this isuue, that's your prerogative.