“It is easy to sit two thousand miles away and tell the Iranians how to perform a civil revolution, particularly if you’re a pundit whose closest contact with a rabid oppressive regime is the annual tax audit,” argues Björn at Bloggen Bent. He continues: “Whilst the tax man, though I may be wrong here, will not drag you into custody and beat you for three or four weeks, and then have you either disappear as if you’ve never existed or have you very publically executed in a humiliating fashion, the Iranian government may very well do that.”
After clearly stating support for freedom and even revolution in Iran, the post very reasonably goes on:
It would do well to remember [the Iranian government’s willingness to resort to extreme violence against its citizens] as the calls for western action is raised again and again. Direct western action would play right into the hands of the oppressors in Iran who have built much of their reason for existance on a perceived opposition to the west.
The subtler ways in which oppressive regimes can, over time, stack the rules of the game in their own favour should never be underestimated. On the ground, it is an accepted fact that the west is amoral and decadent, and on the ground it is just one of those things that “everyone knows” that western meddling is bad.
Therefore, for Barack Obama, or any high level western leader like Gordon Brown or Angela Merkel, to come out and support the revolutionaries in the streets of Iran would be to do a great disservice. It would be akin to “proving” that Israel was behind it all. And thus, people would be jolted out of their conviction by a perceived realization that they had “been fooled”.
I don’t think that anyone of us wants to hand the oppressors a rethorical weapon like that, and I don’t think anyone of us would want to cripple to green revolution by removing the “moral superiority” of the protesters in the eyes of the less committed. Freedom and liberty demands our support in the real, not our support in merely the words.
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