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International Events IX: I feel like a mushroom


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OTOH, I support the protesters and admire their courage. OTOH, I have a bad feeling about this - there could be some pretty nasty counter-moves from the Revolutionary Guard, assuming the latter are still being paid and their wages are worth something. 

Edited by dog-days
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It does look like the protests have spread quite far and wide.

Also a lot of people noting that the last Iranian revolution was only 43 years ago, so people do have reasonable memories of it, and the revolution was successful when the older, more conservative part of society basically lost patience with the government and agreed to either not get involved or actively supported the mostly younger revolutionaries (most of whom now are in their 50s and 60s, of course).

Obviously we've been here before, quite recently, and the regime has reasserted itself even after quite strident demonstrations.

Regarding China, I have a friend in Beijing and he thinks the reports are quite baffling. Just an ordinary day in China, despite some reports of drastically reduced air traffic around the capital. Obviously he hasn't personally seen Xi Jinping today, but he sometimes goes days or even weeks without a major public appearance so that's not massively unusual.

File under "crazy internet rumour" for now.

Edited by Werthead
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2 minutes ago, Ser Scot A Ellison said:

@Werthead

Just saw this.  If police in Iran are shifting to the side of the Protesters the real question is what will the “Revolutionary Guard” do?  

It looks like the previous big protests were largely driven by young people, students and women, and these protests, although they started with women, are now being picked up by a much broader demographic, more in line with the 1979 revolution, which is why the Revolutionary Guard has been more reluctant to get out there and start knocking heads, or at least not as much as they could. There seems to be widespread anger at the degree to which the "morality police" have overreached, and if their existence is necessary. If the government relaxes those rules and makes some noise about bringing the killers of Mahsa Amini to justice, they should be able to ride it out, but if they double down, things could get much uglier.

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6 minutes ago, Ser Scot A Ellison said:

@Werthead

Just saw this.  If police in Iran are shifting to the side of the Protesters the real question is what will the “Revolutionary Guard” do?  

 

After43 years, any original Guard members are quite old. I suspect the newer ones see if as a well paid job but is it one worth dying for? They could melt away like the Afghan army.

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It's strikingly facile and lazy to continually harken back to the 1979 revolution as a comparison.  The more natural - and indeed literal considering those involved - comparison would be the 2009 green revolution as well as the 2017 post-election protests.  In that respect there's clearly increasing discontent for the IRG regime and the Raisi government they're propping up with significantly decreased turnout in last year's election.  Of course, that will only embolden Raisi to quash this and/or wait it out, and it's hard to see that not working out for them.  

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It is neither lazy nor facile to compare this event to the last successful revolution in the exact same country. It's correct to say there have been a pretty constant stream of protests in the last decade to a decade and a half which this is the natural outgrowth of, but in whether it achieves the critical mass needed for regime change or even just a significant political change of course, examining why the 1979 revolution succeeded and subsequent protest movements have not achieved that same critical mass is very worthwhile.

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22 minutes ago, Werthead said:

examining why the 1979 revolution succeeded and subsequent protest movements have not achieved that same critical mass is very worthwhile.

Comparing Pahlavi's regime being ousted to what's happening right now is just about as ass-backwards as you can get.  Obviously in the broadest sense of examining protest movements, sure, each would be included, but again it's incredibly facile to compare the people that successfully took over the country and established a regime for forty years to the people protesting that exact same regime today.

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11 minutes ago, DMC said:

Comparing Pahlavi's regime being ousted to what's happening right now is just about as ass-backwards as you can get.  Obviously in the broadest sense of examining protest movements, sure, each would be included, but again it's incredibly facile to compare the people that successfully took over the country and established a regime for forty years to the people protesting that exact same regime today.

Your position is that we should not not look at the history and context of Iran and political protests within the country and the most successful prior example of such events and whether these protests might or might not reach that level (which a lot of people seem to want, rightly or wrongly)?

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13 minutes ago, Werthead said:

Your position is that we should not not look at the history and context of Iran and political protests within the country and the most successful prior example of such events and whether these protests might or might not reach that level (which a lot of people seem to want, rightly or wrongly)?

Precisely the opposite.  My position is we should not look to what happened forty years ago in such a country - hell any country - because the political context and environment is manifestly different than what was going on at that point in history.  What happened in 1979 is history.  It's very recent history, granted, but you talking about "demographics" and young people being pissed off at the controlling regime is, well, decidedly universal in the history of protest movements. 

Moreover, it doesn't grant any insight on what's happening now other than the obvious fact it's happening in the same state.  Rather, we should look to what has actually been going on in Iran over the past decade to identify not only how organized these protests are, but also why there is a significant amount of the Iranian public that is repeatedly willing to risk their lives for such movements.

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Mass shooting in Russian school. Shooter apparently had a swastika on his shirt. Guessing we’ll soon ‘learn’ he’s “Ukrainian” or a “Ukrainian sympathiser”.

False flag to get sympathy for the war?

https://news.sky.com/story/six-dead-and-20-wounded-as-gunman-opens-fire-in-school-in-russia-12705612

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2 hours ago, Derfel Cadarn said:

Mass shooting in Russian school. Shooter apparently had a swastika on his shirt. Guessing we’ll soon ‘learn’ he’s “Ukrainian” or a “Ukrainian sympathiser”.

False flag to get sympathy for the war?

https://news.sky.com/story/six-dead-and-20-wounded-as-gunman-opens-fire-in-school-in-russia-12705612

You’d hope that Putin wouldn’t do something as despicable as create a false flag event like this, but at this point you never know 

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47 minutes ago, Zorral said:

On the eve of getting hit by Hurricane Ian, Cuba voted in same sex marriage.

 

In 2019 we were in Cuba over the  Xmas holidays and all the talk then was about the vote for changing the constitution to recognize same sex marriage and to update the divorce laws. I guess Covid must have delayed the vote. The consensus from the locals we talked to was that both amendments would pass but the divorce amendment was the one getting the most friction.

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I've been avoiding the news from Italy because it mostly makes me want to vomit. But does anyone know why Fratelli d'Italia are strongest in the north? My mind had involuntarily recast Italy with stock characters from the UK, with the north being metropolitan sophisticates with broke have-nots buying cheap papers with sell-your-soul-and-get-a-cheap-holiday deals in the south. 

Edited by dog-days
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13 minutes ago, dog-days said:

I've been avoiding the news from Italy because it mostly makes me want to vomit. But does anyone know why Fratelli d'Italia are strongest in the north? My mind had involuntarily recast Italy with stock characters from the UK, with the north being metropolitan sophisticates with broke have-nots buying cheap papers with sell-your-soul-and-get-a-cheap-holiday deals in the south. 

Traditionally that is precisely the problem. The North shitting on the poorer and more rural areas in the south. Lega Nord  not wanting to send money south to those corrupt peasents, who don't know how to run an economy. Small excourse into the world of football. Diego Maradona is still revered as a god in Napoli, partly because Napoli won the league and showed those arrogant prick in the north who's boss. And during the WC semi-final clash in Napoli between Diego's Argentina and Italy, the home fans were not exactly rooting for the squadra azzurra. A good portion of them cheered for Argentina. So that North-South divide is real. 

On top of that, Italy never really properly dealt with their fascist past. Mussolini's fucking granddaughter was an MEP a few years ago. And let's just say, she didn't exactly distance herself from her grandfather's legacy.

But I think actual Italian posters are better equipped to answer that question.

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20 minutes ago, A Horse Named Stranger said:

Traditionally that is precisely the problem. The North shitting on the poorer and more rural areas in the south.

To continue on that point.  I read this a few days ago.

Quote

 

Final polls before the blackout period two weeks ago forecast a landslide victory for the group. However, more recently there has been a surprise bounce in support for M5S in Italy’s poorer southern regions, where voters have responded to leader Giuseppe Conte’s promise to retain the party’s flagship policy, the citizens’ income for the poor.

Meloni’s plan to scrap the controversial policy, which cost the Italian government €7.1bn in its first year, has been vulnerable to fraud and has not created the jobs it was intended to, has unleashed fury among voters whose livelihoods have come to depend on it.

Three million Italians benefit from the income, of whom 70% are in the south. In Sicily, Italy’s poorest region, almost 300,000 families receive the subsidy.

 

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/sep/23/italian-rightwing-coalition-makes-final-push-before-election

On 9/25/2022 at 3:32 PM, DMC said:

Precisely the opposite.  My position is we should not look to what happened forty years ago in such a country - hell any country - because the political context and environment is manifestly different than what was going on at that point in history.  What happened in 1979 is history.  It's very recent history, granted, but you talking about "demographics" and young people being pissed off at the controlling regime is, well, decidedly universal in the history of protest movements. 

Moreover, it doesn't grant any insight on what's happening now other than the obvious fact it's happening in the same state.  Rather, we should look to what has actually been going on in Iran over the past decade to identify not only how organized these protests are, but also why there is a significant amount of the Iranian public that is repeatedly willing to risk their lives for such movements.

I see the logic here.  But my take on the earlier posts was that people were pointing out that X, Y and Z all aligned during the 1979 revolution.  None of the more recent protests ever touched all those boxes but this one does touch more of them.  Is that a facile point?  I didn't think so, although It could be inaccurate.  Or it may only increase the chance of a regime change from 2% to 4%.  Anyhow, I did think the point was interesting (one of those boxes being how wide the protests reached).

I do think comparing these protests to 1979 does lead to a seeming exaggeration of the likelihood of success.  No argument on that.

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20 hours ago, Padraig said:

But my take on the earlier posts was that people were pointing out that X, Y and Z all aligned during the 1979 revolution.  None of the more recent protests ever touched all those boxes but this one does touch more of them.  Is that a facile point?  I didn't think so, although It could be inaccurate.  Or it may only increase the chance of a regime change from 2% to 4%.  Anyhow, I did think the point was interesting (one of those boxes being how wide the protests reached).

Well, by literally every possible metric the Green Movement was more widespread and sustained - by far - at least at this point.  Even the 2017-18 protests appear more widespread thus far.  I also don't know what you mean that these protests "checked boxes" those two didn't.  The interesting thing about these protests is they appear to be catalyzed by women - which is certainly new - but hardly reflects any relationship to 1979.

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21 hours ago, dog-days said:

I've been avoiding the news from Italy because it mostly makes me want to vomit. But does anyone know why Fratelli d'Italia are strongest in the north? My mind had involuntarily recast Italy with stock characters from the UK, with the north being metropolitan sophisticates with broke have-nots buying cheap papers with sell-your-soul-and-get-a-cheap-holiday deals in the south. 

She's not a fasist -- she's Italian!

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