Monday, August 30, 2010

Desperately Seeking Obama to Stand Up for the Iranian Green Movement

Looks like Iran which is led by a bunch of loonies is cracking up. The Wall Street Journal has an excellent piece describing how this nation, led by a bunch of Cuckoos may be falling apart. Khamenei who is NOT much beloved by his people, and the always incoherent Ahmadinejad are doing a fine job of destroying this country and convincing the people of the Green movement that it's time for them to go. Where is Obama? He has not reported for duty.

…That opposition is fed by enduring social and economic crises. Unemployment last month reached 15% and is as high as 45% in some regions. In Tehran, health officials warned pregnant women and mothers of young children not to drink the water. Electrical failures are widespread. Taxi drivers have been striking around the country this summer, some because of the long lines at gas stations and others because of a shortage of compressed natural gas. The sanctions seem to be having an effect.

As these pressures have mounted, Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei—against whom Iranians chant "Death to the Dictator!" at public gatherings and nightly from their rooftops—has sought to reaffirm his authority. Late last month he issued a fatwa declaring that his opinions had a status equal to those of the prophet Mohammed. The fatwa caused such consternation that it was removed from his website, then quietly returned a few days later.

…President Ahmadinejad has also tried to buttress his popular support, first by claiming that "stupid Zionists" were trying to kill him, and then by putting out a story—which few in Iran took seriously—of an assassination attempt on his motorcade. As usual, the "report" went through various iterations: first it was a grenade, then a firecracker, then nothing at all.

…These various debacles have strengthened the Green Movement, and opposition leaders Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi continue to launch serious verbal attacks on the regime. When the head of the powerful Guardian Council recently accused the Greens of receiving money from the Saudis and the Americans, Mr. Karroubi gave him the back of his hand: "If I am a conspirator because I object [to the rigged presidential election], then you are a partner of those who stole this nation's vote and are disloyal to the nation."

…Challenges to the regime now come even from prisoners. When Mr. Ahmadinejad challenged Barack Obama to a debate this month, a Green Movement website reported with grim admiration that five journalists in Tehran's infamous Evin Prison had invited Mr. Ahmadinejad to come to jail and debate them.

Very little of this news reaches a mass Western audience, and one wonders to what extent Western governments understand what's going on. If they do, their failure to support the democratic revolutionaries is all the more lamentable.
READ at WSJ: Cracks in the Iranian Monolith By Michael Leeden

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