Sunday, June 21, 2009

Iranian protesters set the bar

I still haven't been able to bring myself to watch any of the videos of the violence in Iran. The few stills I've seen have been upsetting enough. But there are plenty of first hand accounts coming in from all quarters. Roger Cohen, for NYT has a good "on the scene" read. It's interesting that the movement is being driven to a large extent by women, who egg on the men to stay involved. And the theme chant of "Allah-u-Akbar," God is Great, continues to thunder from the rooftops every evening. Let freedom ring.

This is clearly bigger than just a stolen election. It's looking like a full-fledged revolution to me and from all accounts, the consensus seems to be that Supreme Ruler Khameneni is in deep trouble. I think his thuggish response to the protests is what changed their focus from the election to the greater problems with the system. A belief bolstered by Mousavi's latest statement. But you should be reading smarter people than me for that analysis.

Meanwhile, now that the government crackdown is killing and injuring people, Obama issued a brief statement that was pitch perfect.

I continue to be awed by the courage of the demonstrators and encouraged by their tenacity. I agree with Sully on the greater import of this.
Empowered by new information technology, chastened by the apocalyptic conflicts of the last few years, determined to shift course away from civilizational warfare, the people of many countries are grasping for a new order and a new peace. It will not be easy; and it will not be short. But it is the only path worth taking.

And these Iranians are now leading the rest of us.
They set a high bar for activism and all citizens of the world who wish to break the yoke of corporate driven imperialism that currently strangles civil society for self-serving political ends would do well to follow their lead. [graphic]

[More posts daily at The Detroit News]

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