Wednesday, March 26, 2003

On C-SPAN's BookTV I watched Geneive Abdo and Jonathan Lyons talk about their book Answering Only To God (published by Henry Holt) at the Carnegie Council on Ethics and International Affairs on March 18, 2003. The seeds of the defeat of the reformist movement were sown in 1999, when Khatami abandoned the students, his best supporters. Democracy is at least a generation away in Iran unfortunately. I am distinctly reminded of a taxi conversation I had in Tehran when someone said "Islamic Kingdom of Iran" would be a better name for the country.

Oh, I just googled for "Operation Iranian Freedom" and didn't find anything! So here is the first mention if google ever picks it up. The Americans won't be helping Iranians militarily, no matter what Hoder says Iranians want... "There is no wonder why Iranians haven't protested to the war at all. Ironically, they hope the same thing happens for Iran, meaning Western countries someday will rescue a nation tired of a religious tyranny." Actually I don't think this is true in general, and as I said above, democracy is at least a generation away anyway (read the book and find out why), and it's not something which can be "given" to a people.

A barometer of anti-Americanism? Eric Margolis reckons Afghanistan is chaos outside Kabul. So why have more than 2 million people returned since the war ended? I guess there will always be journalists who write knee-jerk anti-American stories, like Fisk. Margolis was also off about Iran being the "next target"...

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