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The Middle East Thread: Now Featuring a Primer in the OP

145791099

Posts

  • HozHoz Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Believe it or not, Mubarak wasn't always unpopular. The polling of the Egyptian public in the past shows this. When his popularity went down and the Egyptians protested, he was thrown out.

    The arabic dictators are brutal but they haven't stuffed every single public institution like their armed forces with ideological drones like the Iranians.

    The so called reformists aren't even true reformists, they were guys involved in the beginning of the revolution and the start of the Islamic Republic. Mousavi had the revolutionary chops, was Prime Minister, had connections to powerful people in the government, didn't really put forth any radical ideas, was allowed to run for President (unlike 99% of people who try), and he still couldn't get a fair election for what isn't even the top position in the Iranian government.

    What the true support of any one position can't be known because of the brutal way in which the Iranian government suppressed dissent. Censorship is much heavier in Iran than in Egypt at any one point. Even when the Egyptians shut off the internet they weren't nearly as effective preventing journalists from doing their job as the Iranians were.

    But it seems a lot of people are more than willing to reward them for their effective suppression of any dissent by crowning them the champions of the Iranian people, because why? They don't like Israel and the US. Yeah, go ahead and shower them with more platitudes about how they're the most democratic country in the Middle East.

  • [Tycho?][Tycho?] Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Hoz wrote: »
    Believe it or not, Mubarak wasn't always unpopular. The polling of the Egyptian public in the past shows this. When his popularity went down and the Egyptians protested, he was thrown out.

    The arabic dictators are brutal but they haven't stuffed every single public institution like their armed forces with ideological drones like the Iranians.

    I'm not sure what you're basing this on. To be anything in Egypt you had to be a member of the NDP, the National Democratic Party. The top politicians and the top military brass were (are) one and the same. In Liyba, Gadaffi gutted the military and virtually replaced it with wierdo "revolutionary" militias. Both these countries of course have nice state media that tow the party line.

    I'm sure Iran does this to a different degree than say Egypt, having gone through an actual revolution where they upended basically their entire society then had their country be half destroyed by a decade of war. I can't imagine Iran having more party loyalists in places than Libya, or Tunisia either.
    The so called reformists aren't even true reformists, they were guys involved in the beginning of the revolution and the start of the Islamic Republic. Mousavi had the revolutionary chops, was Prime Minister, had connections to powerful people in the government, didn't really put forth any radical ideas, was allowed to run for President (unlike 99% of people who try), and he still couldn't get a fair election for what isn't even the top position in the Iranian government.

    I'm not sure how he isn't a true reformist. He certainly put his neck on the line, and the regime certainly felt threatened enough to crack down hard. Khatami was a reformist as well; he wasn't able to reform a whole lot because of the Guardian Council and the like, but foriegn relations anyway were a lot calmer under him.
    What the true support of any one position can't be known because of the brutal way in which the Iranian government suppressed dissent. Censorship is much heavier in Iran than in Egypt at any one point. Even when the Egyptians shut off the internet they weren't nearly as effective preventing journalists from doing their job as the Iranians were.

    But it seems a lot of people are more than willing to reward them for their effective suppression of any dissent by crowning them the champions of the Iranian people, because why? They don't like Israel and the US. Yeah, go ahead and shower them with more platitudes about how they're the most democratic country in the Middle East.

    I will. They're the most democratic country in the Middle East (aside from Israel... well Lebanon too, but they've got a really wierd system there). They're hardly the champions of the people, nor do I think they're nice people or competant rulers. God knows I wouldn't want to live under them. But treating Iran as some sort of ultimate enemy to freedom just isn't fair, they're not worse than many others in the region.

    ragesig.jpg

  • dojangodojango Registered User
    edited February 2011
    Tycho? wrote:
    I will. They're the most democratic country in the Middle East (aside from Israel... well Lebanon too, but they've got a really wierd system there). They're hardly the champions of the people, nor do I think they're nice people or competant rulers. God knows I wouldn't want to live under them. But treating Iran as some sort of ultimate enemy to freedom just isn't fair, they're not worse than many others in the region.

    What about Turkey? Are they not middle east? Because they're a hell of a lot more democratic then Iran.

  • Armored GorillaArmored Gorilla Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    FLASH: Oil traders cite rumor that Gaddafi shot, pushing down oil prices
    17 minutes ago Favorite Retweet Reply

    FLASH: U.S. government has no reason to believe that Gaddafi is dead -official
    20 minutes ago Favorite Retweet Reply

    Gaddafi will take his own life and not flee: minister reut.rs/foT6MO
    44 minutes ago Favorite Retweet Reply

    "I'm a mad god. The Mad God, actually. It's a family title. Gets passed down from me to myself every few thousand years."
  • ElldrenElldren 3067-6294-6208Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    dojango wrote: »
    Tycho? wrote:
    I will. They're the most democratic country in the Middle East (aside from Israel... well Lebanon too, but they've got a really wierd system there). They're hardly the champions of the people, nor do I think they're nice people or competant rulers. God knows I wouldn't want to live under them. But treating Iran as some sort of ultimate enemy to freedom just isn't fair, they're not worse than many others in the region.

    What about Turkey? Are they not middle east? Because they're a hell of a lot more democratic then Iran.

    They are, and they are. edit: at least as much in the Middle East as Iran is, anyway.

    The point is more that compared to Syria/Jordan/Saudi/Yemen/UAE/Qatar/Kuwait/Oman/Bahrain, Iran is a bastion of democracy. Hell, most of those countries are absolute monarchies. Only Yemen and Syria are even nominal republics.

  • dojangodojango Registered User
    edited February 2011
    True, compared to the monarchies, Iran does have a slightly better mechanism for transmitting the voice of the populace into official governmental capacities. But it does seem sometimes that it only works when the populace is saying what the theocratic head of state wants to hear.

  • DarkCrawlerDarkCrawler Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Hoz wrote: »
    But it seems a lot of people are more than willing to reward them for their effective suppression of any dissent by crowning them the champions of the Iranian people, because why?

    That's not what anyone is saying.

    Saying that the Islamic Republic form of government enjoys popular support in many areas of the country is a demonstrated fact. So does the Communist Party of China. So does Vladimir Putin.

    It doesn't make any of them democracies but it makes them better then Gaddafi or Mubarak as far as the will of the people is considered. As crazy as it sounds, there are plenty of people in the world who don't consider democracy to be the primary motivation in their life, or motivation at all.

    When Khameini is hanging from the Freedom Tower, that popular support is gone.

  • [Tycho?][Tycho?] Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    dojango wrote: »
    Tycho? wrote:
    I will. They're the most democratic country in the Middle East (aside from Israel... well Lebanon too, but they've got a really wierd system there). They're hardly the champions of the people, nor do I think they're nice people or competant rulers. God knows I wouldn't want to live under them. But treating Iran as some sort of ultimate enemy to freedom just isn't fair, they're not worse than many others in the region.

    What about Turkey? Are they not middle east? Because they're a hell of a lot more democratic then Iran.

    Yeah, you're right, I totally forgot about Turkey. They're another one with some problems with their democracy; namely a military that has a habit of overthrowing governments every couple decades. I'd certainly call them more democratic than Iran though.

    ragesig.jpg

  • SynthesisSynthesis Honda Today! Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Hoz wrote: »
    But it seems a lot of people are more than willing to reward them for their effective suppression of any dissent by crowning them the champions of the Iranian people, because why?

    That's not what anyone is saying.

    Saying that the Islamic Republic form of government enjoys popular support in many areas of the country is a demonstrated fact. So does the Communist Party of China. So does Vladimir Putin.

    It doesn't make any of them democracies but it makes them better then Gaddafi or Mubarak as far as the will of the people is considered. As crazy as it sounds, there are plenty of people in the world who don't consider democracy to be the primary motivation in their life, or motivation at all.

    When Khameini is hanging from the Freedom Tower, that popular support is gone.

    Both practically, and ideologically, if you, as a human individual, piss off your entire population, you are doing something wrong as head of state (not necessarily head of government, but likely as well). Democratic or not.

    Because, after all, chances are this didn't occur because you're a really bad dresser or have a flatuelence problem. You've held many, many positions that your citizen consider horrific--democracy is an entirely different factor (except that a functioning democracy would, at least in theory, would have removed you some time earlier). You can be the most democratic leader alive, you've simply managed to horrify your population in a much shorter time frame, and you still have a serious goddamn problem.

    Orca wrote: »
    Synthesis wrote:
    Isn't "Your sarcasm makes me wet," the highest compliment an Abh can pay a human?

    Only if said Abh is a member of the nobility.
  • HozHoz Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    [Tycho?] wrote: »
    Hoz wrote: »
    Believe it or not, Mubarak wasn't always unpopular. The polling of the Egyptian public in the past shows this. When his popularity went down and the Egyptians protested, he was thrown out.

    The arabic dictators are brutal but they haven't stuffed every single public institution like their armed forces with ideological drones like the Iranians.

    I'm not sure what you're basing this on. To be anything in Egypt you had to be a member of the NDP, the National Democratic Party. The top politicians and the top military brass were (are) one and the same. In Liyba, Gadaffi gutted the military and virtually replaced it with wierdo "revolutionary" militias. Both these countries of course have nice state media that tow the party line.

    I'm sure Iran does this to a different degree than say Egypt, having gone through an actual revolution where they upended basically their entire society then had their country be half destroyed by a decade of war. I can't imagine Iran having more party loyalists in places than Libya, or Tunisia either.

    Yeah, I tried to find the poll in the NYTimes where I saw middling approval numbers for Mubarak in the past. I couldn't because the NYTimes is saturated with articles about Egypt and the search function won't hit up on those neat little images they put on the left side. And when I put in "Mubarak approval rating" in google all I get is articles about Obama's approval rating.

    I got this:

    http://pewglobal.org/database/?indicator=3&country=64&response=Satisfied

    (China has a consistent 80%+ satisfaction with country's direction, highest of any country, still not a country that can be considered democratic in any way)

    Also I also stumbled upon this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Democracy_Index

    These indexes aren't 100% but I'll trust this one over vaguely supported assertions.

  • AtomikaAtomika (citation needed)Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Hoz wrote: »
    (China has a consistent 80%+ satisfaction with country's direction, highest of any country, still not a country that can be considered democratic in any way)

    It's also a country where people spend on average 11 years in any kind of educational system, as opposed to the Western average of 17. Literacy rates aren't all the snazzy, either.


    And really, any country that can send its own people to "re-education" camps can't expect to have too low of a "satisfaction" rate, now can they?

  • KalkinoKalkino Buttons Londres Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    I just saw a BBC article on Gaddafi's phone into a state news show - apparently he is slightly aggrieved that other long term dictators, naming Queen Elizabeth II, as she has not received similar poor treatment

    Freedom for the Northern Isles!
  • HozHoz Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Hoz wrote: »
    (China has a consistent 80%+ satisfaction with country's direction, highest of any country, still not a country that can be considered democratic in any way)

    It's also a country where people spend on average 11 years in any kind of educational system, as opposed to the Western average of 17. Literacy rates aren't all the snazzy, either.


    And really, any country that can send its own people to "re-education" camps can't expect to have too low of a "satisfaction" rate, now can they?
    Here is something that made me go "What the fuck" - http://pewglobal.org/database/?indicator=18&survey=12&response=Agree&mode=map

  • dojangodojango Registered User
    edited February 2011
    Hoz wrote: »
    Hoz wrote: »
    (China has a consistent 80%+ satisfaction with country's direction, highest of any country, still not a country that can be considered democratic in any way)

    It's also a country where people spend on average 11 years in any kind of educational system, as opposed to the Western average of 17. Literacy rates aren't all the snazzy, either.


    And really, any country that can send its own people to "re-education" camps can't expect to have too low of a "satisfaction" rate, now can they?
    Here is something that made me go "What the fuck" - http://pewglobal.org/database/?indicator=18&survey=12&response=Agree&mode=map

    Well, as Chairman Deng put it, it is glorious to become rich. And it seems like a lot of the Chinese agree. The 'communist' party is no more communist than the 'people's republic' is a republic. Sure, they pay lip service some of the important concepts (state control, occasional elections), while completely avoiding the intended outcomes (economic equality, popular support in the government).

    That being said, the Chinese government has been taking steps to keep the mid east unrest from spreading there, as they so often do to keep news of foreign unrest out.

  • [Tycho?][Tycho?] Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Hoz wrote: »
    [Tycho?] wrote: »
    Hoz wrote: »
    Believe it or not, Mubarak wasn't always unpopular. The polling of the Egyptian public in the past shows this. When his popularity went down and the Egyptians protested, he was thrown out.

    The arabic dictators are brutal but they haven't stuffed every single public institution like their armed forces with ideological drones like the Iranians.

    I'm not sure what you're basing this on. To be anything in Egypt you had to be a member of the NDP, the National Democratic Party. The top politicians and the top military brass were (are) one and the same. In Liyba, Gadaffi gutted the military and virtually replaced it with wierdo "revolutionary" militias. Both these countries of course have nice state media that tow the party line.

    I'm sure Iran does this to a different degree than say Egypt, having gone through an actual revolution where they upended basically their entire society then had their country be half destroyed by a decade of war. I can't imagine Iran having more party loyalists in places than Libya, or Tunisia either.

    Yeah, I tried to find the poll in the NYTimes where I saw middling approval numbers for Mubarak in the past. I couldn't because the NYTimes is saturated with articles about Egypt and the search function won't hit up on those neat little images they put on the left side. And when I put in "Mubarak approval rating" in google all I get is articles about Obama's approval rating.

    I got this:

    http://pewglobal.org/database/?indicator=3&country=64&response=Satisfied

    (China has a consistent 80%+ satisfaction with country's direction, highest of any country, still not a country that can be considered democratic in any way)

    Also I also stumbled upon this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Democracy_Index

    These indexes aren't 100% but I'll trust this one over vaguely supported assertions.

    Wierd, I stumbled upon that same wiki page not two days ago. Similar line of searching I guess.

    Anyway, yeah, people support their governments for strange reasons, or lack of reasons perhaps. Synthesis just brought it up a couple posts back, I was thinking it too; Russia is certainly questionable on democratic principals these days, but Putin still seems pretty popular. Maybe because he looks good with his shirt off.

    ragesig.jpg

  • SynthesisSynthesis Honda Today! Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    [Tycho?] wrote: »
    Hoz wrote: »
    [Tycho?] wrote: »
    Hoz wrote: »
    Believe it or not, Mubarak wasn't always unpopular. The polling of the Egyptian public in the past shows this. When his popularity went down and the Egyptians protested, he was thrown out.

    The arabic dictators are brutal but they haven't stuffed every single public institution like their armed forces with ideological drones like the Iranians.

    I'm not sure what you're basing this on. To be anything in Egypt you had to be a member of the NDP, the National Democratic Party. The top politicians and the top military brass were (are) one and the same. In Liyba, Gadaffi gutted the military and virtually replaced it with wierdo "revolutionary" militias. Both these countries of course have nice state media that tow the party line.

    I'm sure Iran does this to a different degree than say Egypt, having gone through an actual revolution where they upended basically their entire society then had their country be half destroyed by a decade of war. I can't imagine Iran having more party loyalists in places than Libya, or Tunisia either.

    Yeah, I tried to find the poll in the NYTimes where I saw middling approval numbers for Mubarak in the past. I couldn't because the NYTimes is saturated with articles about Egypt and the search function won't hit up on those neat little images they put on the left side. And when I put in "Mubarak approval rating" in google all I get is articles about Obama's approval rating.

    I got this:

    http://pewglobal.org/database/?indicator=3&country=64&response=Satisfied

    (China has a consistent 80%+ satisfaction with country's direction, highest of any country, still not a country that can be considered democratic in any way)

    Also I also stumbled upon this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Democracy_Index

    These indexes aren't 100% but I'll trust this one over vaguely supported assertions.

    Wierd, I stumbled upon that same wiki page not two days ago. Similar line of searching I guess.

    Anyway, yeah, people support their governments for strange reasons, or lack of reasons perhaps. Synthesis just brought it up a couple posts back, I was thinking it too; Russia is certainly questionable on democratic principals these days, but Putin still seems pretty popular. Maybe because he looks good with his shirt off.

    In my own experience, meeting societal expectations--paying your soldiers on time, making sure health care is available, guaranteeing pensions aren't a complete joke--beat democratic expectations--i.e. a relatively fair and open election every so often--almost every time. The most common exception is a crisis of nationalism (and succession), but that's a different topic--the new government is usually held to such standards. And frankly, they should. You can't very well eat an election, it can't set a broken bone, and while democracy is good, it is by no means a guarantee competent government.

    Put in other terms--I was born in a police state that recently became much more democratic (I'd be reluctant to call it a "democracy", but hey, the White House says it is). But if a government coalition said that they were going to dismantle the the National Health Insurance system and lay off a third of state educators (who pretty much make up all worthwhile educators in my country (private schools are largely inferior) because it was the only way to guarantee open and reasonable elections, and they honestly meant it, there'd be a mob a half-million strong marching under the banner "Fuck Elections!" prepared to remove every legislator involved in a much more effective way, via shovels and improvised clubs. And I'd join them in a second. To use a real life example, the last president, when his term ended and his party was voted out of office, was given life imprisonment after a very public trial for being incredibly corrupt. Which, coincidentally, only happened when the new government came to power.

    Is that democratic? No, probably not. In fact, I'm going to say it was probably incredibly undemocratic.

    Ideally, you want to have both--that is, a competent government and a democratic one (that is replaced by a comparatively competent government). If you can only choose one, frankly, a lot people have very good reasons to choose "competent", because they can vividly remember the suffering involved in dramatically incompetent government.

    Of course, it's entirely possible to have neither. My homeland did in the past, and the case could be made that the people of the Russian Federation did under the Yeltsin Regime. Yeltsin himself is remember in the west as being a "democratic" leader, but that's mostly because we overlooked that time he decided to resolve his disagreements with parliament by having tanks shoot at it (and killing hundreds of people in the process). That's probably not very democratic. In either case, the leadership style of Putin, and his contemporaries, is a reflection of that--Yeltsin was seen almost universally as leading an incompetent government, which his successors desperately sought to correct (and to be fair, when it comes to the function of government--wages, pensions, infrastructure, not having tanks shoot in downtown Moscow--the current government is seen as being significantly more competent than its predecessor). People in Russia would probably like a more democratic government as well, but their not above prioritizing their desires.

    Orca wrote: »
    Synthesis wrote:
    Isn't "Your sarcasm makes me wet," the highest compliment an Abh can pay a human?

    Only if said Abh is a member of the nobility.
  • ClevingerClevinger Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    CNN actually does something worthwhile for a change.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hgP0Gro52c8

    Listen to what they chant towards the end. <img class=" title=":lol:" class="bbcode_smiley" />

  • ronyaronya Arrrrrrf. the ivory tower's basementRegistered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Don't take the polls too seriously. Soviet bloc communism was relatively popular until it abruptly ceased to be popular. It is known that societies can undergo sudden and dramatic shifts in mass opinion; a simple reason is that holding a false opinion is cheap for any given individual - there's no benefit unless there are numerous other individuals with a similar opinion - and so it doesn't take much social pressure or violent threats to encourage the public adoption of state-desired opinions.

    Where societies punish open expression of certain ideas - via law or cultural norm - increasingly large amounts of individuals may hold those ideas 'under the surface' until the dam suddenly breaks. When the revolution comes, it will come as a surprise.

    This said, I don't doubt that people do frequently desire competence and stability over free and fair elections. It can be difficult for authoritarian governments to tell whether the people think they are providing competence and stability, though; the politburo can have simply no idea of the level of discontentment.

    Steam
    shryke wrote: »
    Talking to ronya is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma, that has been shit out and then eaten again by a bulldog.
  • HeraldSHeraldS Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Clevinger wrote: »
    CNN actually does something worthwhile for a change.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hgP0Gro52c8

    Listen to what they chant towards the end. <img class=" title=":lol:" class="bbcode_smiley" />

    I couldn't quite make it out. What are they chanting?

  • ClevingerClevinger Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    HeraldS wrote: »
    Clevinger wrote: »
    CNN actually does something worthwhile for a change.

    [url][/url]

    Listen to what they chant towards the end. <img class=" title=":lol:" class="bbcode_smiley" />

    I couldn't quite make it out. What are they chanting?

    C-N-N! Something something something!

    They seem happy to see them, so it was probably good.

  • ElkiElki hegemon globalSuper Moderator, Moderator, ClubPA mod
    edited February 2011
    Thank God for Al Jazeera

    Looking forward to seeing you in a better place, Mirazi!

  • Caveman PawsCaveman Paws Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Elki wrote: »
    Thank God for Al Jazeera

    Looking forward to seeing you in a better place, Mirazi!

    Subtle. Will the Saudi people hear about this? Or just those who bother to go online and look at alt news sources?

  • ElkiElki hegemon globalSuper Moderator, Moderator, ClubPA mod
    edited February 2011
    Elki wrote: »
    Thank God for Al Jazeera

    Looking forward to seeing you in a better place, Mirazi!

    Subtle. Will the Saudi people hear about this? Or just those who bother to go online and look at alt news sources?

    It's not gonna be a big deal in Saudi Arabia, but Al Arabiya is meant to be a regional voice and it always had a credibility issue. And after its woeful Egyptian coverage? Not the best of months.

  • Dr Mario KartDr Mario Kart Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    So if a country decides to seize monies that a foreign dictator/entity has in their banks, what happens to the money? Like Britain is about to score some of Gaddafi's stuff it looks like. Is it just a freebie to that country's government or what are the rules on that?

  • Armored GorillaArmored Gorilla Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    So if a country decides to seize monies that a foreign dictator/entity has in their banks, what happens to the money? Like Britain is about to score some of Gaddafi's stuff it looks like. Is it just a freebie to that country's government or what are the rules on that?

    scrooge-mcduck.jpg

    "I'm a mad god. The Mad God, actually. It's a family title. Gets passed down from me to myself every few thousand years."
  • gtrmpgtrmp Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Elki wrote: »
    Elki wrote: »
    Thank God for Al Jazeera

    Looking forward to seeing you in a better place, Mirazi!

    Subtle. Will the Saudi people hear about this? Or just those who bother to go online and look at alt news sources?

    It's not gonna be a big deal in Saudi Arabia, but Al Arabiya is meant to be a regional voice and it always had a credibility issue. And after its woeful Egyptian coverage? Not the best of months.

    Has Al Jazeera ever had a really notable conflict of interests over its (lack of) similar coverage of Qatari politics?

  • ThomamelasThomamelas Bro!Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    So if a country decides to seize monies that a foreign dictator/entity has in their banks, what happens to the money? Like Britain is about to score some of Gaddafi's stuff it looks like. Is it just a freebie to that country's government or what are the rules on that?

    It depends on who seizes the money. The Swiss for instance have a law that requires their government to return the money to the country of origin. But only if it will be used for humanitarian purposes.

  • dojangodojango Registered User
    edited February 2011
    So if a country decides to seize monies that a foreign dictator/entity has in their banks, what happens to the money? Like Britain is about to score some of Gaddafi's stuff it looks like. Is it just a freebie to that country's government or what are the rules on that?

    It depends on the country's rules. In the US, for example, funds from DRK, Cuba and probably Iran are held by the US government, probably in T-Bills, although I'm not certain. Companies that were nationalized by Cuba got to make claims against Cuba's assets held by the US. As for Iran and some of the other sanctioned countries, we just hold the monies until sanctions are lifted.

    Individuals whose assets are seized & who are convicted of crimes in US courts can have assets forfeited to the government, but that seems unlikely in the case of foreign nationals.

  • Caveman PawsCaveman Paws Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Fucking interview on CNN 360 is hard to watch. Anderson Cooper talking with a woman who hasn't left her house in 5 days and is terrified, hoping a no fly zone is put into effect to keep the mercenaries out of Libya.

  • DramDram Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Oh Shit! Rumors of protests spreading to Best Korea!

    http://www.speroforum.com/site/article.asp?id=49154&t=North+Korea%3A+++First+public+protests+against+the+Kims%92+regime
    The wave of protests that began in the Mideast appears to have reached even North Korea. For the first time in the history of the Stalinist regime, groups of ordinary citizens have protested in three cities demanding food and electricity, sources say. The event is exceptional and confirms the economic difficulties, especially concerning food supplies, people have to face under the Communist government. According to South Korea’s Chosun Ilbo newspaper, citing a North Korean source, demonstrations broke out on 14 February, two days before Kim Jong-il’s birthday, in the cities of Jongju, Yongchon and Sonchon, not far from the border of China.

    Edit: Linked source is down. New link to a more in depth analysis of events.....as in depth as an analysis on North Korean events can be anyway.

  • EndaroEndaro Weyland Consortium Building a Better WorldRegistered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Hoz wrote: »
    [Tycho?] wrote: »
    Hoz wrote: »
    Believe it or not, Mubarak wasn't always unpopular. The polling of the Egyptian public in the past shows this. When his popularity went down and the Egyptians protested, he was thrown out.

    The arabic dictators are brutal but they haven't stuffed every single public institution like their armed forces with ideological drones like the Iranians.

    I'm not sure what you're basing this on. To be anything in Egypt you had to be a member of the NDP, the National Democratic Party. The top politicians and the top military brass were (are) one and the same. In Liyba, Gadaffi gutted the military and virtually replaced it with wierdo "revolutionary" militias. Both these countries of course have nice state media that tow the party line.

    I'm sure Iran does this to a different degree than say Egypt, having gone through an actual revolution where they upended basically their entire society then had their country be half destroyed by a decade of war. I can't imagine Iran having more party loyalists in places than Libya, or Tunisia either.

    Yeah, I tried to find the poll in the NYTimes where I saw middling approval numbers for Mubarak in the past. I couldn't because the NYTimes is saturated with articles about Egypt and the search function won't hit up on those neat little images they put on the left side. And when I put in "Mubarak approval rating" in google all I get is articles about Obama's approval rating.

    I don't how trustworthy/accurate it is but I read this article the other day which discusses pretty heavily the shift in public opinion. Interesting for being a pro-Mubarak article but uh...it is Newsweek so...

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  • CasualCasual flap flap flap wiggle wiggle wiggle Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Dram wrote: »
    Oh Shit! Rumors of protests spreading to Best Korea!

    http://www.asianews.it/news-en/First-public-protests-against-the-Kims%E2%80%99-regime-20861.html
    The wave of protests that began in the Mideast appears to have reached even North Korea. For the first time in the history of the Stalinist regime, groups of ordinary citizens have protested in three cities demanding food and electricity, sources say. The event is exceptional and confirms the economic difficulties, especially concerning food supplies, people have to face under the Communist government. According to South Korea’s Chosun Ilbo newspaper, citing a North Korean source, demonstrations broke out on 14 February, two days before Kim Jong-il’s birthday, in the cities of Jongju, Yongchon and Sonchon, not far from the border of China.

    Man I hope so hard that this goes somewhere.

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  • ArchonexArchonex Registered User
    edited February 2011
    Casual wrote: »
    Dram wrote: »
    Oh Shit! Rumors of protests spreading to Best Korea!

    http://www.asianews.it/news-en/First-public-protests-against-the-Kims%E2%80%99-regime-20861.html
    The wave of protests that began in the Mideast appears to have reached even North Korea. For the first time in the history of the Stalinist regime, groups of ordinary citizens have protested in three cities demanding food and electricity, sources say. The event is exceptional and confirms the economic difficulties, especially concerning food supplies, people have to face under the Communist government. According to South Korea’s Chosun Ilbo newspaper, citing a North Korean source, demonstrations broke out on 14 February, two days before Kim Jong-il’s birthday, in the cities of Jongju, Yongchon and Sonchon, not far from the border of China.

    Man I hope so hard that this goes somewhere.

    At the risk of sounding cynical, I don't.


    NK's leadership is fucking loony. There are those in their government that wouldn't hesitate to mash the big red button over and over again if they thought they were going.


    That's not getting into the fact that Kim set up the equivalent of WW2 death camps in several areas in North Korea. Meaning anyone who gets captured for protesting is likely going to endure hell before being murdered.


    The best case scenario would be to start protesting after Kim has died. Because the guy's probably on his last legs, and looks to be the type that puts his "legacy" above all else. Pissing all over that aspiration of his while he's still around to contest it is not a good way to stay alive.

  • CasualCasual flap flap flap wiggle wiggle wiggle Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Archonex wrote: »
    Casual wrote: »
    Dram wrote: »
    Oh Shit! Rumors of protests spreading to Best Korea!

    http://www.asianews.it/news-en/First-public-protests-against-the-Kims%E2%80%99-regime-20861.html
    The wave of protests that began in the Mideast appears to have reached even North Korea. For the first time in the history of the Stalinist regime, groups of ordinary citizens have protested in three cities demanding food and electricity, sources say. The event is exceptional and confirms the economic difficulties, especially concerning food supplies, people have to face under the Communist government. According to South Korea’s Chosun Ilbo newspaper, citing a North Korean source, demonstrations broke out on 14 February, two days before Kim Jong-il’s birthday, in the cities of Jongju, Yongchon and Sonchon, not far from the border of China.

    Man I hope so hard that this goes somewhere.

    At the risk of sounding cynical, I don't.


    NK's leadership is fucking loony. There are those in their government that wouldn't hesitate to mash the big red button over and over again if they thought they were going.


    That's not getting into the fact that Kim set up the equivalent of WW2 death camps in several areas in North Korea. Meaning anyone who gets captured for protesting is likely going to endure hell before being murdered.


    The best case scenario would be to start protesting after Kim has died. Because the guy's probably on his last legs, and looks to be the type that puts his "legacy" above all else. Pissing all over that aspiration of his while he's still around to contest it is not a good way to stay alive.

    I'm not so sure. It seems the army is starting to go hungry as well as the common people. Besides if people used reprisal by the regieme as an reason not to bother none of these protests would be happening.

    Again looking at it cynically a reunified Korea would be worth a few deaths.

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  • raistuumumraistuumum Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Welp, not to derail the derailing, but it looks like NATO is going to be involved in Libya.

  • AltaliciousAltalicious Registered User
    edited February 2011
    That might stall as soon as the NATO emergency council realises that they don't have a military humanitarian intervention force to conduct a military humanitarian intervention, because they are all either:

    a) In Afghanistan
    b) Non-deployable due to national caveats
    c) Being cut due to financial constraints

    I think they probably mean that America is holding an emergency council.

  • ElldrenElldren 3067-6294-6208Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    That might stall as soon as the NATO emergency council realises that they don't have a military humanitarian intervention force to conduct a military humanitarian intervention, because they are all either:

    a) In Afghanistan
    b) Non-deployable due to national caveats
    c) Being cut due to financial constraints

    I think they probably mean that America is holding an emergency council.

    ... but they're part of NATO and have a) and b) all over them

  • AltaliciousAltalicious Registered User
    edited February 2011
    Elldren wrote:
    ... but they're part of NATO and have a) and b) all over them

    I think you missed my point. And I don't know what having "In Afghanistan" and "non-deployable due to national caveats" all over them even means.

  • CasualCasual flap flap flap wiggle wiggle wiggle Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    In other NATO news.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-south-asia-12575394
    Afghan government investigators have told the BBC that some 65 civilians, including 50 women and children, were killed in a Nato operation last week.
    ---
    Afghans - from President Hamid Karzai down - believe that in Kunar province, indiscriminate Nato firepower killed 20 women, 29 children, and more than a dozen unarmed men.

    Nato believes there was not a single civilian casualty from its operation in Kunar.

    It says that pro-Taliban villagers have created a propaganda story that was taken up by politicians in Kabul eager to prove their nationalist credentials.

    This is interesting, serious division between NATO and the highest levels of the Afghan government. NATO officials actually going as far as to say that the Afghans are mutilating women and children to discredit them and the Afghan government is going along with it.

    I honestly don't know how to call this one. On the one hand, collateral damage like this can and does happen and it wouldn't be the first time the military has lied about it to save face. On the other hand the Afghans have some good reasons to lie about it too and I would not put it past the Taliban to maim women and children so they could lay the blame on NATO. Disgusting as it is, it's an extremely effective way of getting NATO out of the country.

    Plus the figures just look a little too convenient to me. A casualty list composed almost entirely of women and children? It reeks of propaganda. NATO need to make the battle footage public, it's the only way they can prove their innocence one way or the other.

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  • DirtmuncherDirtmuncher Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Elldren wrote:
    ... but they're part of NATO and have a) and b) all over them

    I think you missed my point. And I don't know what having "In Afghanistan" and "non-deployable due to national caveats" all over them even means.
    In Brussels, senior officials said the European Union was weighing a range of options to evacuate 5,000-6,000 EU citizens still in Libya, many of them oil company employees, and said one possibility was a military humanitarian intervention force.

    I have just bolded the single relevant point.
    The vehicles in afghanistan use fuel. If the fuel prices keep rising due to this unrest then that war is going to become that much more expensive.

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