06/24/09 — Iran atrocity: No democracy really blossoms without someone's support

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Iran atrocity: No democracy really blossoms without someone's support

As expected, the Iranian government is making sure that those who have spoken out against what can only be termed a sham election are being imprisoned or killed.

And, today, there were confessions, coerced, it is certain, broadcast around the country, suggesting that the protests were only at the urging of Western media.

Can you imagine the mental torture that must have been inflicted -- and the fear -- to make those young people participate in that sort of show?

President Barack Obama has spoken out about the Iranian atrocities, finally, but it is likely that it is too little, too late.

The government crackdown in Iran is something Americans cannot imagine -- or understand. People do not disappear in the middle of the night here and no one tells the press here what to say or report.

To see the spirit of people crushed by mentally ill and power hungry leaders and a brainwashed security detail of thugs is nothing short of tragic.

And, like it or not, this was not the United States' finest hour.

What some of our leaders seem to forget is that no revolutionary movement really stands alone.

The group of colonists who fought for freedom from English rule did not -- and neither will the many people's groups who seek escape from tyrannical rule.

A heartswell of democratic spirit and thousands of protesters are really not enough to overpower a government that controls information and guns.

And to think otherwise is, simply put, ridiculous.

There has been much talk about American imperialism in recent years -- and statements that this country is arrogant and insists that its way of life should be the rule for the world.

That is balderdash.

Standing up for freedom and supporting those who seek to speak freely and to have their own say in their governments is not imperialism. We are not seeking to change cultures or to make every country in the world a mini-America.

When we stand with people seeking freedom and a say in their own destinies, we are returning the favor -- paying back those who helped a fledgling country get its start.

It is our duty. It is how we acknowledge that we understand that freedom is not really free -- and carries with it a whole list of obligations.

President Obama should not jump into any conflict without thinking first. But there has been enough thinking and watching. Now, it is time to step up.

Published in Editorials on June 24, 2009 12:13 PM