If you want to be knowledgeable about what’s going on in Iran, you MUST read these columnists.
All hangs in the balance. The Khamenei regime is deciding whether to do a Tiananmen. And what side is the Obama administration taking? None. Except for the desire that this “vigorous debate” (press secretary Robert Gibbs’s disgraceful euphemism) over election “irregularities” not stand in the way of U.S.-Iranian engagement on nuclear weapons.
Praising Islam abroad is a lot more catchy than praising democracy — one boldly inspires Bush’s critics, the other sheepishly dovetails with Bush’s agenda. All that, in varying degrees, also explains the troubling neglect of the Iranians in the street.
One mystery remains: Does Obama do this because the squeaky problem gets the attention, or does he really empathize with the tired anti-colonial, anti-imperialist, and anti-capitalist refrain of those who used to be considered hostile?
This fear of offending terrorist-supporting and quite murderous theocrats is all very bewildering at first glance: A hope-and-change president is proving himself both weak and cynical at a critical juncture when the world’s unsavory types from North Korea to Venezuela are looking keenly at, and learning from, the U.S. reaction.
Whatever your view on how aggressively the president and secretary of state should condemn the murder of peaceful demonstrators in Iran — all over Iran, not just in Tehran — I continue to believe that silence is a form of complicity. I don’t think it’s at all smart, or honorable. But then, I have long advocated regime change.
The unfolding drama in Iran is at once thrilling, disturbing, and ambiguous. It’s thrilling because for the first time since the Khomeini revolution in 1979, a spontaneous, grassroots movement threatens the rulers in Tehran. The mullahocracy, deeply unpopular with the Iranian people, has held power through violence and terror for 30 years. As much misery as Iran has spread worldwide through its sponsorship of terror and its pursuit of nuclear weapons, it has visited even more wretchedness on its own people
In a perverse irony, we are witnessing the most serious threat to the Islamic Republic since its establishment, at the same time the first American president explicitly to accept the regime’s legitimacy happens to be in office. Whatever credibility the mullahs have lost in the street, they have picked up in the Oval Office, where the president bizarrely seems less enthusiastic about a change in dispensation in Iran than much of Tehran’s population.