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November 25, 2002
MICHAEL LEDEEN WRITES:
If the American government, or the chatterers, or the academy were at all serious about trying to understand the real world, we would be in the midst of a discussion of the potentially earth-shaking events in Iran. And the main topic of discussion would be how close we are to the downfall of the mullahcracy in Tehran. Last Friday something like half a million Iranian citizens took to the streets to demonstrate their disgust with the regime of the Islamic Republic (the very same Islamic Republic with which some of our diplomats unaccountably continue to make deals, and which our secretary of state unaccountably refuses to condemn in the same clear language used by the president, the national-security adviser, and the secretary of defense). Contrary to what little you have been able to read in the popular press, these demonstrations were not limited to Tehran, but spread all over the country, with amazing results. And it was particularly noteworthy that there were very large numbers of female participants; in Tehran, some people I spoke to estimated that between one-half and two-thirds of the demonstrators were women.
I've been puzzled about why almost no one besides Michael Ledeen (and some bloggers) is talking about this. I'm almost ready to conclude that the Administration is deliberately downplaying it, because they think the mullahs are on their way out anyway, and that (visible) U.S. support for the revolution will do more harm than good. (There is, I strongly suspect, some invisible support.) Either that, or they're just idiots.