Thursday, June 25, 2009

Bang Bang Trumps Chant Chant

I've been watching the events in Iran. I haven't watched the videos of people being shot. I've seen enough of that, thanks very much. But I do know that if these people become martyrs to the protesters then something might get started.

But I don't have a lot of hope for the protest movement. Unless significant portions of the army or security forces defect to their side, either the protests will peter out or the streets of Tehran will run red.

I remember Tiananmin during my senior year in high school. We were all excited that a peaceful movement like we were seeing could bring about change. Several of my classmates were either Chinese immigrants or their children. They would fill us in every morning on what they had learned overnight from family still in China. When the crackdown came we were all shocked. We shouldn't have been.

Peaceful revolutions like those led by Gandi and King only work when they are held against countries that care about domestic and world opinion. When Britain beat and shot protestor in India, they were crucified in the press. When Southern police set dogs on civil rights protesters, it led to greater sympathy for the civil rights movement.

Insular totalitarian regimes don't care about public opinion. China is a world power, especially economically. Iran is a regional power and can shut off the petroleum taps to Europe and Japan if those governments squawk about Iran shooting and persecuting protesters.

So I don't have much hope for the opposition movement in Iran. I think in the next week we'll see a massacre in Tehran. I think Ahmadinajad will use this as an excuse to hold a purge and clean house. Mousavi is probably a walking dead man, and I wouldn't be surprised if Rafsanjani doesn't go with him.

I feel this way because the government in Iran has all the power, which means they have all the guns. If none of the parts of the government don't change sides, all they can do is chant and march.

I really believe this is why the constitution protects the right to own firearms. The founding fathers knew why they had been able to win the revolution and it wasn't the printing presses. It was the guns and the fact that the soldiers knew how to shoot.

If the government knows that while it may have more firepower than it's citizens, but not a monopoly, it's more likely to listen when the citizens take to the streets.

When the government has all the guns, it is free to either ignore the wishes of it's citizens or make those citizens go away permanently.

I keep the protesters in Iran in my prayers, but I think nothing will come of it. I hope I'm wrong.

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