Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Ali at Free Iraqi is keeping us informed of the current political maneuverings in Iraq while everyone's eyes are on Lebanon and, to a lesse extent, Syria. The little details, like a small fracture in the Coalition List (the one Sistani recommended) often have as much effect on flow of politics as do demonstrations of 200,000 people. As the maneuvering continues and coalitions sprout and/or die, it is well worth keeping one eye on them, anyway.

And since the Cedar Revolution was birthed and grew while I was otherwise occupied with blog changes and didn't have the time to post on it, maybe this is a good time to mention a caution I have with the happenings in Lebanon. First off, I am happy that the the Cedar Revolution has been so successful to date and hope that freedom will flourish there and, so, democracy, as a result. My concern is the degree to which it is fed by hatred for a common condition, the Syrian occupation, than it is for the love of an uncommon one, freedom. A common enemy unites until the common enemy is gone and when gone the unity dissipates back to the original, individual, and often contentious groups. Such was the case with the allies in WWII. It happened with the 'common cause' created by 9/11. The post by Ali is just a tiny example of this, too.

The Orange or Rose Revolution this is not. At least not yet. There were specific people leading those, with specific ideas and a specific direction in which those who supported them knew they would be led. That does not exist as yet in the Cedar Revolution, or, at least, I have not seen it amongst all the coverage of the Lebanese exercising their freedom to gather and yell at the Syrians to get out. Maybe I am wrong and this is undercovered by the MSM. I will keep looking and hoping.

Darn. There was something else I was going to write but I have now forgotten it. If it pops back into the frontal lobe soon, it will be the next post.

Update: Yes, I remembered but it will still be another but related post. This update is to add a link to Iraq the Model, where Omar suggest how to read the recent demonstation whipped up by Hezbollah to show support for Syria. He has some good points, paticularly this observation:
I see no patriotism at all in holding pictures of another country's president (err…I mean tyrant) and chanting "Long live Asad…Long live Syria" when that very administration you're cheering and chanting for has been keeping your country a hostage for over a decade.
There are (slight?) rumblings in the EU to list Hezbollah a terrorist organization, which Hezbollah has admitted, if done, will be a death notice for them. This would certainly be a help to continued progress toward freedom and democracy for Lebanon and couldn't happen soon enough.

But this is just another indication what is happening isn't the same as the OR or CR. In the latter two, the turn towards a different type of freedom was opposed by Russia, but it was a 'democratic' Russia (insert autocratic or authoritarian if you will) looking at maintaining a coalition of same policy thinking states. In Lebanon we have a tyrannical (Hama rules) Syria looking to maintain a colony and, while not mentioned, I don't doubt their thinking was, a future province and a Syria with access to the Mediterranean. All rules of engagement between these two opposing philosophies in Lebanon make this competition completely different than the Ukraine and Georgia.

And that will lead me to the next post for my thought remembered.


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