As Michael Jackson gets a funeral worthy of Lady Diana and the media goes gaga with it, I’d like to remind you all not to take your attention off of Iran. Unfortunately, the news from this country continues to get swamped by these endless distractions, but there is still news:
- The Guardian: Thirty-six army officers arrested in Iran over protest plan
- LA Times: Iran’s moderate vice president under pressure to resign
- Philadelphia Inquirer: Blast of dissent from inside Iran
- Wall Street Journal: Iran’s Ahmadinejad Promises Changes In Govt, ‘Respect’ For Young
- Voice of America: Election Underscores Splits Among Iranian Clerics
- Press TV: Iran opposition urges release of detainees
Although it appears as though the government is holding out against the protests by the dissidents, there are still reasons to hope in Iran. The split among the clerics in particular opens the way for reforms in the future. These are the people we need to give space to, so that Iran develops away from its theocratic authoritarianism into a better democracy.
Clearly, it’s not going to be easy, and there is frustratingly little we in the West can do to hurry the process along. But it means something to those dissidents that we still pay attention, that we offer what support we can.
The opportunity to make change comes now, not tomorrow. The dissidents of Iran aren’t asking for much, but I think we have an obligation to share. Don’t forget Iran. That’s all I ask.
- New York Times: Latest Updates from Iran.