Sunday, February 27, 2005

Hopeful Revolutions
(This Is Not A Post #2)

Anyone for a game of dominoes?

Chrenkoff gives us the background on what's going on in Lebanon.

Jason Van Steenwyk has an excellent post on people power over at Countercolumn:
Iraq's democracy, while popular internally, was imposed from without. It never would have happened without the U.S. forcing the issue.

But Lebanon has a chance to seize democracy under its own power. People power. That's not to say the Lebanese people aren't going to need a lot of help. Turkey needs to lean on Syria. Egypt needs to lean on them. The Israelis probably need to be publicly agnostic, but support the right of the Lebanese people to determine their own form of government themselves, so long as they do not provide succor to Hezbollah and their crossborder attacks.

Iraq can put them under a great deal of pressure, as can the U.S. via Iraq.

But the engine has to be the will of the Lebanese people.

And if Lebanon can do it...

The good doctor plays You Say You Want A Revolution:
The events in Lebanon over the last few weeks have been astounding to witness. The assassination of former PM Hariri has unified the anti-Syrian populace, and brought together disparate portions of the Arab population in the region like nothing before. As one protestor phrased it:

"It is the beginning of a new Arab revolution," argues Samir Franjieh, one of the organizers of the opposition. "It's the first time a whole Arab society is seeking change -- Christians and Muslims, men and women, rich and poor."

As Van Steenwyk claims, Lebanon may well be the lynchpin of the Middle East.

New Sisyphus tells of the revolution beginning in Egypt:
After the successful, free and fair elections in Afghanistan and Iraq, popular movements for democratic reform have been strengthened in Iran, Syria, the Palestinian Authority, Lebanon and, now, Egypt. The marches in Cairo began small, with riot police outnumbering protestors by a factor of more than 10 to 1. But in recent days the popular pressure from the people of Egypt for democratic reform was palpable in the streets.

And now comes word today, via the A.P., that President Mubarak has announced only hours ago wide-sweeping changes in Egypt's electoral law. A.P. writer Maamoun Youssef reports ...

Karl Marx wasn't entirely wrong, you know. Eventually, the oppressed will rise up and demand control over their own lives, as long as someone gives them hope.

Update: Pretty huge! Publius Pundit has an excellent roundup of today's protests in Beirut, including links to photos, video, and blogs in Lebanon. Estimates are that possibly 200,000 or more are protesting despite a government ban on protests. (Mug tip to Instapundit.)

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