March 6, 2005


Um, `Could Bush be right' (Chicago Tribune, March 6, 2005)

Who on Earth wants to be known as the last foe of freedom?

Not Crown Prince Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, who Thursday joined a chorus of leaders telling Syrian President Bashar Assad to end his nation's three-decade occupation of Lebanon.

Not Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, who abruptly announced plans to hold the first free, multiparty election in his country's history.

Not President Mahmoud Abbas, whose path to Palestinian independence is now blocked less by Israel than by peace-averse militant groups such as Islamic Jihad and Hamas.

And certainly not the brave peoples of Afghanistan, of Georgia, of Ukraine, of Iraq, who have raised loud their voices for freedom, often at peril to their lives. Each day, new tremors signal populist demands in lands where freedom has not thrived. This is, then, one of those explosive moments when history is written not in books, but screaming headlines.

Now it is Lebanon's turn, with citizens by the millions heralding a "cedar revolution." Is it possible that Iran, with its repressive and unpopular mullahs, could be next? And in sclerotic Syria, who today would buy Assad futures?

That, of course, is the dilemma dictators face in these moments of tumult: When history lurches, where will it next land?

How perverse that the last foes are set to be the Western Left and American paleocons.

Posted by Orrin Judd at March 6, 2005 1:40 PM

Perverse maybe, surprising certainly not.

Posted by: Bart at March 6, 2005 2:03 PM