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4 years ago  ::  Jan 28, 2011 - 9:38AM #1
TemplarS
Posts: 6,865

www.nytimes.com/2011/01/28/world/middlee...


Well, the events in Tunisia (massed protests force the president out of the country) have, predictably, moved elsewhere in the Arab world.


On the face of it, hard to argue with the frustration these people feel. 


But hard also not to worry a bit about what might come next.  In that part of the world, replacing authoritarian rulers tends not to always work out so well.  The Shah and Saddam bit the dust and good riddance, but what followed was hardly a paradise on earth for the people (though, perhaps, Iraq is still a work in progress).


Everyone wants democracy, but democracy Teheran-style is no democracy at all.


 

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4 years ago  ::  Jan 28, 2011 - 9:52AM #2
Erey
Posts: 18,940

Well it ihas long been an area ripe for revolt, you do hope and pray they don't trade one form of totalitarianism for antoher.

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4 years ago  ::  Jan 28, 2011 - 10:00AM #3
mecdukebec
Posts: 14,715
The irony is, nobody's been invaded and there's no Neo-Con right to brag.  It's almost enough to discredit the former Current Occupant as an incompetent yutz.  At any rate, if the "Berlin Wall" falls, maybe Iraq will be exposed for the blunder it was.
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4 years ago  ::  Jan 28, 2011 - 11:04AM #4
teilhard
Posts: 51,394

Everybody who has been longing for REAL "Democracy" in The Arab World ...


Here it comes ... look out ...

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4 years ago  ::  Jan 28, 2011 - 11:04AM #5
vra
Posts: 6,403

There's a real hidden danger here that can easily be overlooked, and that is what can happen in two areas that could badly hurt us.


One is that these rebellions are occuring in countries that we have considered "pro-American", and yet their populace tend to be strongly "anti-American" due to a series of factors, one of which is that we propped up these authoritarian regimes.  So, if these rebellions result in a change of government, there's a very good chance that what will happen would not be in our best interests.  Also, various Middle Eastern experts had predicted this could happen because of our incursions into Iraq and Afghanistan which, according to the CIA, has strongly contributed to this anti-American backlash.


Secondly, there's great danger that oil prices could sky-rocket in the next few months largely because the heaviest producers of Middle Eastern oil are likely to be affected even if the rebellions aren't successful, and that's because the leaders will try and placate their own populace by increasing oil profits by jacking up the price and essentially using the money to put a patch on a problem that's much larger than the patch.  And, as everyone here well knows, even if someone sneezes funny in that area of the world, oil prices jump up in response.


Thomas Friedman, who knows the Middle East like the back of his hand, has warned us for decades now that we must get off the imported-oil boob and rely more on domestic production and conservation, and that we simply cannot get even close to being able to produce enough with "drill baby drill" domestically.  But, of course, "money talks" (you know the rest), and the powers that made our decisions have been catering to big oil for decades (btw, did anyone notice that in the State of the Union Speech that when Obama mentioned cutting off oil subsidies that John Boehner didn't clap but just sat on his hands and looked like an orange guppy?).


Brace yourself, because we may be now seeing the beginning of another "game changing" moment in time.   

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4 years ago  ::  Jan 28, 2011 - 11:18AM #6
mecdukebec
Posts: 14,715
Remember when the Wingnuts in the U.S. said that it was wrong for the President, Mr Obama, to go to Cairo and address, however informally, the Muslim world?
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"Wesley told the early Methodists to gain all they could and save all they could so that they could give all they could. It means that I consider my money to belong to God and I see myself as one of the hungry people who needs to get fed with God’s money. If I really have put all my trust in Jesus Christ as savior and Lord, then nothing I have is really my own anymore."
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4 years ago  ::  Jan 28, 2011 - 11:24AM #7
teilhard
Posts: 51,394

One MORE Reason to Blame Obama ... !!!


Street-Level "Democracy" in The Middle East is not OUR "Friend" ...


Jan 28, 2011 -- 11:18AM, mecdukebec wrote:


Remember when the Wingnuts in the U.S. said that it was wrong for the President, Mr Obama, to go to Cairo and address, however informally, the Muslim world?





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4 years ago  ::  Jan 28, 2011 - 11:36AM #8
mecdukebec
Posts: 14,715
But, street-level democracy in Iraq is?  As I say, when Moqtada al-Sadr, who has returned to Iraq, at least to visit (It depends on which news service one listens (to).), brings on a Third Iraq War, it will be strange to hear the lectures from the Neo-Cons. 

As it stands, there is precious little that the  U.S. can do to influence the goings-on in Egypt:  A tidal wave is coming.
*******

"Wesley told the early Methodists to gain all they could and save all they could so that they could give all they could. It means that I consider my money to belong to God and I see myself as one of the hungry people who needs to get fed with God’s money. If I really have put all my trust in Jesus Christ as savior and Lord, then nothing I have is really my own anymore."
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4 years ago  ::  Jan 28, 2011 - 11:39AM #9
teilhard
Posts: 51,394

Indeed ... If we are SKILLED enough, we may perhaps be able to "Ride" this Wave without being INNUNDATED by it ...


History, however, would seem to indicate that we're NOT that Smart -- or WISE ...


We are gonna get SOAKED ...


Jan 28, 2011 -- 11:36AM, mecdukebec wrote:

But, street-level democracy in Iraq is? As I say, when Moqtada al-Sadr, who has returned to Iraq, at least to visit (It depends on which news service one listens (to).), brings on a Third Iraq War, it will be strange to hear the lectures from the Neo-Cons. As it stands, there is precious little that the U.S. can do to influence the goings-on in Egypt: A tidal wave is coming.




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4 years ago  ::  Jan 28, 2011 - 11:59AM #10
TemplarS
Posts: 6,865

The really hard question for the people in these countries is this:  they can change government A for government B, they can try democracy or theocracy or any other thing they wish, they can throw the westerners out and wipe Israel off the map- and why will any of this in and of itself make their lives any better?


I think the danger to American interests here has been somewhat overplayed.  You can draw a parallel with Venezuela- for all Chavez' blustering and bungling he hasn't amounted to more than a minor annoyance, and he still needs to sell us his oil and we still buy it.


 


 

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