December 30, 2009

Iran: what should the West think & do?

What’s going on in Iran isn’t that different from what happened in Eastern Europe just before the wall fell. It also reminds us what happened in South Africa just before P.W. Botha decided that he must cede power to avoid a civil war and national bloodbath, or 1992 and Boris Yeltsin facing down the tanks prepared to overthrow the regime. Yet, at the same time, it could also be China just before the Tiananmen Square crackdown.

What should the West (especially the US) think & do? There are those—especially among the neoconservatives—who do not believe there is any difference between radical leaders and reformers in Iran. According to them it is foolish to make a distinction or to modulate policy to benefit one side or the other. I respect their opinion, but I’m not sure they are right. What I’m quite sure about is that it would be ineffective and possibly counterproductive for the US and its Western allies to take punitive actions against Iran (new sanctions would just hit the people and, by consequence, would throw a lifeline to Khamenei and further enrich the Iranian regime and the Revolutionary Guards), while supporting human rights and civil liberties, and denouncing those violations that have occurred would speak louder about what the Western true priorities are than any threats of punitive action.

1 comment:

  1. The history of Iran is a grandiose epic that makes the present regime look pitiful.
    It's even quite likely that Clotilde Reiss (amongst others virtually held for ransom) knows more about the history and culture of Iran than most of the members of its present, mediocre regime.
    It has purposefully created an irreversible situation. There's no going back, no more pretending to be a democracy. They have callously bulldozed clear all political opposition in order to launch a specific project unimpededly. A project that can't be good for any one, even less so for the Iranians themselves, and certainly if it's led by a megalomaniac who seems to believe he has a divine destiny.

    According to the Nobel Peace Prize winner Shirin Ebadi who is living in exile, there were at least 2,000 arrests resulting from the last demonstration.

    Let's wish that the new year will give the Iranian people new hope and courage to continue to fight for what is right and for what is rightfully theirs.