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Thoughts about & hope for Iran - Synchronicity swirls and other foolishness

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June 16th, 2009


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01:00 pm - Thoughts about & hope for Iran
Like many of the people reading this, I'm keeping up with events in Iran. Sadly, it's very difficult to be hopeful, since I agree several of the grimmer analyses that I've seen - the protests are not yet threatening the actual power structure in Iran. Iran's presidency is an important post, but the president is also has far less power than Khamenei, who is Iran's theocrat and hold the position of "Leader of the Revolution", popularly known by the suitably ominous title of Supreme Leader (as an aside, I wonder if despots actually enjoy having titles that sound like they come from cheesy pulp movies). Regardless of what you call Khamenei, the only way that anything remotely like real change will occur in Iran is if he and the Guardian Council are deposed, since between them, then control the military, the mass media, and have authority over both the law and the politics of the nation.

There is currently a chance for real change in Iran, since Khamenei isn't handling the situation in a remotely popular manner. However, any change won't come easily. One article I read had a commentator who had lived in Iran for several years say that ultimately the possibility of change comes down to whether the government or the protesters have the highest tolerance for violence. I would dearly love for that statement to be proven wrong, but I fear that it won't be.

In any case, for now we can hope. My hope is that Iran actually becomes what it has claimed to be, a truly democratic Muslim nation. Like so much of the third world, the Muslim nation of the Middle East (using that term fairly broadly) are a rather horrid collection of theocrats like Iran and kleptocrats like the Saudi royal family and the two ruling clans of the United Arab Emirates. The reasons are a mixture of past colonial experience and the more recent nasty habit both the US and UK have of supporting thugs. In any case, for now there is a chance for something better, but that chance is not large and the absolute worst thing any first world nation could do is interfere.
Current Mood: contemplativecontemplative

(11 comments | Leave a comment)

Comments:


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From:sabrelioness
Date:June 16th, 2009 08:12 pm (UTC)
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Sadly, I think Iran is due another revolution any time now.

On the one hand, with the very young population, Iran has the potential to be a truly comsmopolitan society, but they're under the thumb of religious hardliners, which is a bad thing no matter what religion is involved.
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From:aekiy
Date:June 16th, 2009 09:22 pm (UTC)
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Given that the protesters against Ahmadinejad are actively requesting foreign aid from first-world countries (and Obama in particular), why do you say that interference from a first-world country would be "the absolute worst thing?"
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From:heron61
Date:June 17th, 2009 12:23 am (UTC)
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Because we then completely legitimize the claims of the most reactionary Muslims that any change that occurs is due to interference by the West. The odds that such aid could backfire badly (as such attempts have many times in the past) vastly (to me at least) outweigh any good we might be able to do.

Edited at 2009-06-17 12:24 am (UTC)
[User Picture]
From:aekiy
Date:June 17th, 2009 01:46 am (UTC)
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Well, there is that. I don't know that there is a 'good' way to approach the situation, but some countries are already getting involved to varying extents. I don't think this can be resolved well at all without some outside influence, though there will be problems either way.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:June 16th, 2009 09:32 pm (UTC)
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It's frightening to think that change will only come if the progressive elements in Iran can withstand more violence than those in power, those with the weapons at their disposal, and with (foreign) militia units at their beck and call. Unfortunately, for much of human history, change has come this way weather that change was beneficial for the average person or not. This does not make it right or necessary, however, especially in light of so-called advances in human ethical standards.
[User Picture]
From:silvaerina_tael
Date:June 17th, 2009 05:00 am (UTC)
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Sorry about that. I didn't realise I wasn't signed in at the time...
[User Picture]
From:silvaerina_tael
Date:June 16th, 2009 09:37 pm (UTC)
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It's frightening to think that change will only come if the progressive elements in Iran can withstand more violence than those in power; than those with the weapons and military at their disposal, and with (foreign) militia units at their beck and call. Unfortunately, for much of human history, change has come this way weather that change was beneficial for the average person or not. This does not make it right or necessary, however, especially in light of our supposedly higher ethical standards.
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From:helen99
Date:June 16th, 2009 11:45 pm (UTC)
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A lot of the more progressive Iranians left in droves when these guys took over, so the pool of people who would ordinarily revolt has pretty much settled elsewhere (I'd have done the same - no way I'd want to get killed over some political idiocy).

Despots use rigid language and naming conventions that support their authoritarianism. Hyper-authoritarian nomenclature does sound pretty absurd to us, but to the people who are living it, it probably has an intimidating effect. The last administration inflicted a number of organizational name changes agencies ("Environment, Safety and Health" was changed to "Health, Safety and Security" for example). It has a tendency to change the social climate in subtle ways.

Iranians are such a beautiful, feisty people though. I have hope that they can shake the oppressors soon.
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From:kitten_goddess
Date:June 17th, 2009 03:34 am (UTC)
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How in the heck can the USA get involved in this, anyway? We're fighting two wars, we're trying to fix the economy, and we're busy reforming health care. We've got too much on our plate right now.

Then again, those in power could go the way of Caecescu (sp?) at the hands of the populace.
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From:heron61
Date:June 17th, 2009 04:40 am (UTC)
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Then again, those in power could go the way of Caecescu (sp?) at the hands of the populace.

I fear that it will be more difficult than that, but I very much hope that you are correct.

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