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thefieldsofelysium
Shop_seller_2 thefieldsofelysium is a Chictopia seller who has been hand-picked by our editors to sell merchandise on our website.

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thefieldsofe...
posts: 170

I’m surprised that no-one has brought this up yet (at least, as far as I can tell). It’s taken over practically every news channel and blog. I think it’s incredibly fascinating — it really is a turning point in Iranian (and, really, world) history.

Even though I support what the protesters are fighting for, I find it disturbing to see mounting violence coming from both sides. (Although, I suppose many mass protests eventually resort to physical confrontation, intentionally or not.) Police officers and government supporters beat student protesters, and – in turn – protesters pull pro-government people from their cars and bikes, and attack them. It’s no longer a peaceful protest, and I think this throws a bit of a wrench into the issue, in terms of morality and human rights.

Also, regarding Obama’s seemingly insecure stance on the protests (not cleaving strongly to either side), I think he’s merely approaching the event the way he approaches most things: with caution. And I agree that – at this particular point in time – this is most likely the best attitude, given that he has promised that America would not interfere with Iran’s internal affairs, and he takes into account the fact that he still has to keep the window of dialogue open with Iran’s government.

Thoughts?

posted about 5 years ago
twinkl
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twinkl
posts: 125

I was going to post this topic as well, but honestly, all I know of the issue comes from headlines I see on twitter and one article I read on Yahoo.

I think it’s wise for Obama to have stated that the US does not plan to meddle in Iran. I don’t quite agree that superpowers should boss around sovereign nations. The whole “superpower” paradigm is changing as well, so I don’t really have any faith in America as an authority in other parts of the world. But then again, maybe it’s all entirely calculated and the risks just outweigh any gain the US stands to win in Iran.

It’s an atrocity for the government to force violence on peaceful protesters. But I don’t think it justifies putting American lives in danger. There are plenty of atrocities being perpetrated by governments all over the world—how people in North Korea barely get food, for example. It’s just how the world is… no?

I do hope it’s well documented for the present and future.

posted about 5 years ago
 
thefieldsofelysium
Shop_seller_2 thefieldsofelysium is a Chictopia seller who has been hand-picked by our editors to sell merchandise on our website.

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thefieldsofe...
posts: 170

Yes, I agree that the “superpower” paradigm is changing — I think for the better, although I don’t really see a world where every country gets an equal and fair say in international issues. (Countries with greater stability, wealth, skills, and/or resources will always have leverage over others. Hegemons will ultimately be hegemons, even if the degree to which they’re hegemonic changes – and even if the title changes hands – over time.)

A few semesters ago for class, I read a part of Kinzer’s All the Shah’s Men, which does a great job of explaining a critical part of the background history (and bad blood) between Iran and America. (Although I’m sure one can find more or less the same information somewhere online.) Events from the ’50s and ’70s, and the subsequent effects, have definitely played in a huge role in the unfolding of the current protest movement (or, rather, in what has led up to it). So, it will certainly be well-documented!

It’s just how the world is… Unfortunately true. But it doesn’t mean we shouldn’t support and encourage regime/government change from within. I’ve always wondered if the North Korean people would ever try and overthrow their leader — they probably haven’t (yet?) solely because they are forbidden to have access to world news and information, unlike Iranians (although their government is currently attempting to firewall everything). If they saw the protests in Tehran and Shiraz on TV or heard about them on the radio, you can bet your ass some of them would be thinking of actually revolting (although the casualties would be even more catastrophic…unless the military sided with the people). For now, our best bet is to smuggle refugees that made it into northern China and hope that Kim Jong Il will expire very, very soon (which will provide a critical window of opportunity for some serious governmental and human rights improvements). (Hell, we haven’t even been able to get two of our own journalists out of the North Korean concentration camps.)

posted about 5 years ago
 
twinkl
Shop_seller_2 twinkl is a Chictopia seller who has been hand-picked by our editors to sell merchandise on our website.

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twinkl
posts: 125

Right, the “It’s just how the world is” statement was just to shed light on the fact that Iran is getting so much coverage right now because it’s so immediate and has twitter as an incredibly emotional and engaging medium through which the message can be propagated. Other victims are not so fortunate.

I think it’s great to fuel passion within people. People should care what’s going on in the rest of the world. People should want to help and be active. However, I don’t agree with falling victim to mass hysteria/propaganda and not realizing the bigger picture of foreign affairs in general.

I obviously have not been driven by this issue to a point of deep personal engagement. Kudos to those who have. What are you doing about it?

posted about 5 years ago
 
thefieldsofelysium
Shop_seller_2 thefieldsofelysium is a Chictopia seller who has been hand-picked by our editors to sell merchandise on our website.

Chictopia sellers carry fashion forward products and ensure great customer experience. Click here if you are interested in selling your merchandise on Chictopia.
thefieldsofe...
posts: 170

Yes — access to information really is the key. I think many in America take it for granted (even though it is a right in this country). Without it, there’s no way that the forming/shaping/changing of ideologies and philosophies would take place.

However, I don’t agree with falling victim to mass hysteria/propaganda and not realizing the bigger picture of foreign affairs in general. I completely agree! It’s why I’m always hesitant about joining mass protests, because I really don’t want to lose perspective in favor of acting solely on emotions.

(I’m not sure if your question is addressed to me or the general public…? So, here goes.) I don’t have any personal investment in the Iran protest movement, but I have studied Iranian issues before, by joining a small on-campus group called “Engaging Iranians” a few years ago. Basically, I was worried about the nuclear weapons issue in Iran and how our involvement in Iraq might be a catalyst for something disastrous. (Also, I really disliked how people were generalizing and dehumanizing Middle Easterners since 9/11 and the beginning of the Iraq War.) So – with the group – I sought to achieve a better understanding of Iran’s culture, religion, history, and people. I’m still trying to do that — mostly on my own, though. I admit I have a longer and more intense emotional investment in the North Korean refugee issue, since I have done more research and activist work in that area.

But going back to one of your points (People should care what’s going on in the rest of the world. People should want to help and be active.), it’s precisely because most people aren’t personally affected by what’s going on abroad that they don’t really care what goes on, and don’t feel inclined to help and be active. (Example: my parents. This frustrates me sometimes.) At least, I feel that with the extensive coverage of the Iranian protest movement, awareness will be forced (in lieu of a better word) upon a lot of people who wouldn’t have noticed otherwise.

posted about 5 years ago
 
twinkl
Shop_seller_2 twinkl is a Chictopia seller who has been hand-picked by our editors to sell merchandise on our website.

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twinkl
posts: 125

My question was general, but thanks for sharing your experiences! I’m not much of an activist in any sense of the word. I hope that later when I figure out my career/passions/etc. that I will reach a point where I do feel personal investment in important world issues.

Emotions are so tricky. I really contemplate the value emotions have in society. Not saying I don’t see the value… but I wonder if we were Vulcans………

posted about 5 years ago
 
thefieldsofelysium
Shop_seller_2 thefieldsofelysium is a Chictopia seller who has been hand-picked by our editors to sell merchandise on our website.

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thefieldsofe...
posts: 170

I’m not sure why you believe personal investment in important world issues is contingent on figuring out your career/passions/etc. Unless those things incorporate traveling abroad and seeing the sources of conflict/suffering in person, in which case I think I get your meaning. But I do believe that having a career, and subsequently possessing more money, does enable one to have a more direct, financial impact on a charity/cause/issue. I wish I had more money to donate to my chosen causes!

Emotions — if only we could channel them more precisely! Like keeping them in art and out of politics. (Haha, I inferred from your sentence that Vulcans are non-emotional beings…but I had to look it up to make sure.) I assume you haven’t seen the movie, Equilibrium? :) Interesting in concept, but only kind of entertaining on screen and very predictable. (Although I do like dystopian films in general.)

posted about 5 years ago
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