Based on some articles I've read, the protests in Iran in the aftermath of an obviously rigged election are fueled by people Tweeting, texting, and blogging information from Tehran to the rest of the country and the world. Because the government also uses the Internet, it doesn't want to shut it down, as was done in Burma/Myanmar in 2007. This allows people on the streets to bypass the censors in the Iranian press and get their story out to a waiting world.
Amazing, how these networking sites are transforming our world. In 2006, Time Magazine named Americans as the "Person of the Year" in connection to YouTube, which helped to kill Senator George Allen's reelection chances (he was caught on camera calling an Indian-American "macaca"). With mainstream media reporting only the news corporations want people to know, the collective wisdom of individual people are able to bypass the traditional media through the use of new technologies.
It's too early to tell what may be the end result of this "Twitter Revolution", but hopefully, the days of the mullahs ruling Iran are numbered. The Islamists came into power in the 1979 Islamic Revolution, led by the Ayatollah Khomeini (who was the face of Satan in my childhood). That revolution was a rebellion against the pro-Western Shah, who came to power in a 1953 coup led by the CIA to oust the popularly elected Mossadeg. To this day, the Iranian government says that no reconciliation with the U.S. can begin without the American government acknowledging wrongdoing for that event. Why our government can't own up to it is baffling. The CIA term "blowback" refers exactly to that idea...that U.S. covert operations to undermine or overthrow popularly elected governments could come back and explode in our faces with an even worse scenario. History has shown time and again that blowback is reality. Just think of it as the secular term for "karma."
One thing that amuses me in the aftermath of the Iranian elections is hearing Bush-supporting Republicans talk with glee about this election result. Its so obvious its a fraud, they say. Um, yeah...they can so easily see that its a fraud when another country is involved, but when their own illegitimate candidate gets the presidency through his own electoral fraud, they won't even entertain that thought. Its funny that people so ignorant about major issues facing our country and facts regarding 9/11 and WMDs in Iraq are such "experts" about Iranian elections.
Another source of amusement is that many Bush supporters hate Iranian President Ahmadinejad. I always got the impression that Ahmadinejad was the Iranian Bush. Both are religious fanatics and have a tendency to speak from ignorance, which causes laughter among audiences who know better.
In the 1990s, a conservative I knew didn't understand global politics. He didn't understand when I told him that liberal people, regardless of what nationality, have a tendency to get along, but conservatives in different nationalities tend to hate one another. For example, conservative Americans hate the French and conservative French people tend not to like America. If you had two rooms and put a liberal Jew, a liberal Muslim, and a liberal Christian in one room and an Orthodox Jew, a fundamentalist Muslim, and a conservative Christian in the other room...which group would get along and which would kill each other? I think the answer is pretty obvious (well...to everyone EXCEPT conservatives). Why is this the case? Because conservatives in every nation tend to be nationalistic and often are religious. That means they believe their country first, right or wrong. Liberals are more likely to see the other's point of view and share common values.
So, when I hear conservatives gleefully talk about the possibility of a revolution in Iran, it only reminds me of how little they know about their own philosophy. They have more in common with the mullahs and Ahmadinejad than they have the self-awareness to realize. I wish they'd just shut up and keep their ignorance about foreign affairs to themselves. They need to spend more time reflecting on why their beloved Bush was such a failure.
This possibility of revolution isn't surprising. According to numerology, the ninth year is a year of closures. Things long fermented come into fruition. We've seen revolutions happen in the ninth year before. The French Revolution of 1789. Hitler invaded Poland in 1939, sparking World War II. The Communist Revolution in China of 1949. Student uprisings in the U.S. in 1969. The Islamic Revolution of 1979. Student uprisings in Tiananman Square in 1989, the fall of communist regimes in East Germany, Hungary, Poland, Czechoslovakia, and Romania in the fall of 1989. The Battle in Seattle against the WTO in 1999. What else is new? Somewhere on our planet, people are moving towards greater freedom. Why not Iran? They've been oppressed for too long, and the majority of the population is too young to remember the events of 1979. All they know about their entire life is the oppressive rule of the religiously conservative mullahs who run the government of Iran.
Give America twenty years of Christian Coalition rule and people would act the same way. Rebellion against oppressive control is the natural inclination of human kind.
My thoughts and prayers are with the people of Iran. The people who are yearning for freedom. May they at long last finally get the government they deserve and shake off the oppressive rule of the mullahs. Secular government that allows individual freedoms is a good thing.