Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Going Green — Iran and The Future

One of the talking point a lot of people are using to dismiss the events in Iran is that Mousavi is not all that different from Ahmednijihad, a view I hold at least in general. The implication being it is not worth supporting the Iranian Greens because the new boss will be the same as the old boss.

The position being contested is one that works within a framework of the mullahs who are the real power in Iran, they hold a veto over what the president does. I think it fair to move from that point to believing that Mousavi was a 100% approved candidate that his views on most affairs were not significantly different from the other candidates, Ahmednijihad included. However, it is quite obvious there is some terrible difference that at least the likes of Ayatollah Khameni can not tolerate.

Now, what would be my guess of Iran's future if the Green movement succeeds? I don't expect a full fledged Jeffersonian liberal democracy or republic to emerge. I expect a nation more liberal than its current self but it will be a very very long time before trendy cafes in Isfahan will be hosting showings of Eve Ensler's famous work. I suspect too, a nation more willing to give up some of its nasty habits (e.g. assasinations, supporting the likes of Hezbolalalah and Hamas) and perhaps a nation we would be okay with exploring nuclear energy. Remember, it isn't the weapon, but the finger on the trigger.

Now, as I said above, I agree Mousavi is probably not very dissimilar from Ahmednijihad, so why do I still support the Iranian Green movement? Because it weakens the mullah's grip on power on Iran, even if this movement fails it has both weakened the mullahs and unmasked them for what they are. If it succeeds it is hard to say what will happen to Mousavi if he will continue to ride the wave he is on or if other forces will displace him.

I do not fear Iran lurching in a less liberal direction on account of the Mullahs, but I do fear Iran lurching leftwards one site I was reading talked about the Marxists organizing labor strikes and they could very well be riding that wave at the end of the storm.

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