Second, many of the evil Basij goons wore masks. This is new, and indicates fear that they will be identified and hunted down. The conflict is ever more violent; on several occasions crowds attacked security forces, even dragging them out of cars…and then, cursing them, letting them run away.
Third, in another ominous development for the regime, people from the southern (lower class) neighborhoods of Tehran joined in. The revolt is now very broad based. But it is not yet powerful enough for the Bazaaris to join; today the Tehran Bazaar was open for business.
Fourth, the regime has been stripped of religious legitimacy by its own panic-driven brutality. By invading mosques and hosseiniyas, by assaulting family members of leading clerics (Grand Ayatollah Sane’i is under house arrest), and by ordering murder on Ashura, the supreme leader has violated a whole series of previously sacrosanct rules. I will be surprised if we do not soon hear from Iraq’s Grand Ayatollah Sistani.
Finally, there is still no national strike of the sort that paralyzed the shah’s regime 31 years ago. But this may come; there were Twitter reports yesterday saying that Mousavi was calling for a strike January 7th.
The latest is what you should have expected: a state of emergency throughout the country (although some cities are still in open revolt), and many angry calls for the arrest of Mousavi and Karroubi, which would surely provoke more massive demonstrations, and perhaps even the use of weapons by the people (even today, Molotov cocktails were thrown at security forces in central Tehran). If this were a normal regime, I’d expect a cooling down period, but it isn’t, so it’s unpredictable.
Meanwhile, the Western world clicks its collective tongue and criticizes “the violence” and the lack of respect for rights of free speech and assembly, as if that were the point. Not a single western “leader” has found the nerve and the common sense to denounce the regime and call for regime change. Indeed our guy Obama couldn’t drag himself away from the beach and the basketball court on Oahu to say anything at all. Nor could Ms Hillary.
A generation of brave freedom fighters in Iran, and the usual accomplices to evil in the West. As before. If any of them dares say “never again,” they should be publicly spanked, removed from office, and then sent off for education. Or is it reeducation?
UPDATE: Obama finally came out with the usual condemnation of violence and reiteration of human rights. Fine for academics and scribblers, not good enough for a leader.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT: Thanks to the indispensable Instapundit. And Doctor Helen, natch. And Denis Prager and Hugh Hewitt for having me on today.
UPDATE II: The assault against the opposition is documented very well by Homylafayette here. All those young people in the clutches of monsters. ugh.