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Saturday, June 20, 2009

"So, We are On Our Own"

Roger Cohen writes:

“Can’t the United Nations help us?” one woman asked me. I said I doubted that very much. “So,” she said, “we are on our own.”

The world is watching, and technology is connecting, and the West is sending what signals it can, but in the end that is true. Iranians have fought this lonely fight for a long time: to be free, to have a measure of democracy. Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the leader of the Islamic revolution, understood that, weaving a little plurality into an authoritarian system. That pluralism has ebbed and flowed since 1979 — mainly the former — but last week it was crushed with blunt brutality. That is why a whole new generation of Iranians, their intelligence insulted, has risen. I’d say the momentum is with them for now.

At moments on Saturday, Khamenei’s authority, which is that of the Islamic Republic itself, seemed fragile. The revolutionary authorities have always mocked the cancer-ridden Shah ceding before an uprising, and vowed never to bend in the same way. But they are facing a swelling test.

link: Op-Ed Columnist - A Supreme Leader Loses His Aura as Iranians Flock to the Streets -


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