May 02, 2002

IRANWATCH

IRANWATCH: After Michael Ledeen's latest amazing column reporting on the coming revolution in Iran (which the U.S. ought to do more to help foment), I emailed to ask him where he gets his information (since it seems no one else reports it). Ledeen has some Iranian friends that give him info that is totally exclusive, but he was still able to give me a few sites (notably Payvand.com and IranMania.com) that have English-language news from Iran. First in a series of highlights from those sites:

While rioting Euroweenies indulged Marxist fantasies for May Day (or "International Labour Day," as the U.N. calls it), underpaid workers in Iran had real complaints about wages and inflation. Their rallying cry: "forget Palestine and think about us instead."

A post-mullah Iran might be a natural ally of Israel against Arab agression. When John Derbyshire wrote about Middle East Jew-hating, several Iranians wrote to say they don't so much mind Jews, but hate Arabs. See also the second letter here to Tal G. in Jerusalem. The writer's note that Tal's blog was the first Israeli point of view he's ever been exposed to underlines how pervasive communication technology is undermining tyranny.

James Taranto wonders, "Would the West be better off if the Arab world did modernize? After all, the 20th century gave us an example of a regime that was both murderous and efficient: Nazi Germany. Could it be that the only thing saving us from the Arabs' ideology is their inefficiency?" But the 2000s are different from the 1930s; in the age of the Internet, where modernization is marked by wide access to lots of information, a fully modern totalitarian state is impossible. As soon as you've modernized to the point where news of the outside world is widely available and dissidents can easily and safely communicate with one another, totalitarianism becomes untenable.

Posted by John Tabin at May 2, 2002 01:38 AM
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