Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Regime Change In Iran-A Dangerous Venture

MiddleXeast writes about why the U.S. should promote democracy in Iran.

Summary

MiddleXeast essentially says: to achieve victory in Iraq and the Middle East and to end Iran’s nuclear program, the U.S. may want to have as a goal regime change in Iran.

Analysis

Be careful, X; endorsing regime change can be dangerous, especially in Iran. You forgot to mention that the CIA successfully orchestrated a coup in the 1950s. The democratically elected government was "exchanged" for the current, theocratic dictatorship. It may have served the interests of the world at the time, but in the long run, it turned out to be one of the greatest mistakes of the 20th century. Look where we are now.

You are proposing that the current theocracy be overthrown for a democracy. But there will always be unintended consequences. Who can say the "revolution" will not just turn in to another civil war? That is not likely to happen, but there could be a lesser version of that.

By aiding those seeking to alter the Iranian government, the U.S. would be aiding revolutionaries. The downside of aiding revolutionaries is that of extremists emerging because of them (Sunni terrorists are already being aided by the U.S. in their struggle against Iran, according to ABC News). More terrorists would emerge, spreading weapons, fueling hatred, and doing a lot of harm.

Opinion

To get rid of Ayatollah Khamenei and the Assembly of Experts, the U.S. would have to take things slowly and very carefully, if they were to even attempt to "democratize" Iran. There is support in Iran for a democratic government because of multiple grievances, but to actually convince the people of Iran to somehow make their country into a democracy would be where the difficulty lays, not with convincing the public. Making a democracy of Iraq was/is difficult, so why wouldn’t altering Iran be?

The U.S. should hope for democracy in Iran, but be careful while doing so. No one wants an additional front on the war on terrorism. And the U.S. shouldn’t be actively (read: militarily or financially) taking part of the revolution, only promoting and assisting by means of organization and by giving them “legal benefits”. A democratic Iran should be something we all hope for, but shouldn’t be assisted or expected.

6 comments:

middleXeast said...

“A democratic Iran should be something we all hope for, but shouldn’t be assisted or expected,” wrote Simmons.

To bring about democratic(regime)change, hope is not enough, two factors are needed: (1)democratic leadership has to seize power; and (2) set out to remake society.

So no democratic leadership, no democratic change.

This is because people do not automatically mobilize for collective action, no matter how democratic intention they may have.

People need to have some kind of organization, offices of a directing, formal or informal, to channel intention and enable action.

A decisive factor in endowing people with tactical power, thus is the intervention of outside agency, that is the American power, that crack apart established power domains by its mighty, superior firepower–as well as through coalition with group near the centers of power, including alliances figured out on the age-old rule that the enemy of one’s enemy is one’s friend.

This is not to say, well, let’s start bombing Iran, but rather it is to say, given that the dominant struggle against the mullahcracy comes from all walks of life in Iran, combined with the successive wave of secularization of people in the past two decades, democracy has a great chance, with American support, to land smoothly in Iran.

Let’s not forget that Iran is not Iraq, despite their similarity in English dictation. Iraq is an artificial construction that stretches back only to the 1920s, whereas Iran is a nation-state going back to 2500 years ago, and about the same time the Iranians came up with the first human rights declaration which today is hanging at the main entrance gate of the Unite Nation in New York.

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Simmons said...

So organizing the resistance is what the U.S. should be doing? Even that could be dangerous.

middleXeast said...

No, but support the movement.

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Simmons said...

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Because now it is an actual photograph of the Earth, not just a computer animated simulation.

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