Tuesday, April 03, 2007
  One good thing.

Amid all the unmitigated shit in our media and culture, one very good thing happened today: Persian resistance fighter Ghazal Omid talked Glenn Beck into featuring a daily segment on what's happening inside Iran. She will supply the material if he will run it.

Encouraging resistance movements is an important part of running a war. Since the large organization which describes itself for some mysterious reason as "The U.S. Government" is not performing any of the normal and necessary tasks involved in running a war, it's good to see private efforts in this direction.

= = = = =

In WW2 we devoted tremendous effort to supporting and praising the resistance forces in France, Italy, and smaller countries. Prime-time dramas were centered on the Free French, and the news on D-Day talked about Charles de Gaulle as much as Churchill. We never discussed the resistance within Germany, probably because there wasn't any. Germans loved Hitler.

This leads me to a heterodox conclusion.

Unlike Beck, I don't think Iran is the Germany of this war. Iran under the Ayatollahs is more like France under Petain. Iran has been occupied by a basically foreign and Arab style of Mohammedanism since 1979. As in France, some of the elites and many of the peasants have gone along with the occupation. The peasants like it because they are mainly Arabs; the elites (such as Ahmedi-Nezhad) like it because it brings them to a level of power they wouldn't have reached under the Shah's regime.

And as in France, the best people hate the occupation. Many of them escaped to Europe and America before the revolution solidified its control, but most are stuck in Iran, either fatalistic or unwilling to risk the death of remaining family members by leaving now.

Where's the Berlin of this war? That's a bit more complicated, because Arabia doesn't have a distinct national center. Riyadh doesn't correspond to Berlin. Nevertheless, the Arabian Peninsula (including Saudi, Yemen, Oman, etc) is where Osama came from, and it's where the 9/11 attackers came from.

So why haven't we attacked Arabia? That's always been the hard question.

Yes, I know there's a strategic reason to keep the main oil supplier happy. But the Axis-occupied territories were also suppliers of of many important materials including rubber and oil, and we managed to work through those limitations long enough to defeat the Axis FAST. (If FDR had decided to run a Rumsfeldian Long Twilight Struggle, we would have been obliged to compromise then just as we are now.)

I keep returning to the same basic question. Is that large organization in DC totally incompetent, totally unaware of every single lesson of history and common sense, totally naive about every single aspect of human nature, war and politics, or is the defect more serious?
 


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Polistra was named after the original townsite of Manhattan (the one in Kansas). When I was growing up in Manhattan, I spent a lot of time exploring by foot, bike, and car. I discovered the ruins of an old mill along Wildcat Creek, and decided (inaccurately) that it was the remains of the original site of Polistra. Accurate or not, I've always liked the name, with its echoes of Poland (an under-appreciated friend of freedom) and stars. ==== The title icon is explained here. ==== Switchover: This 2007 entry marks a sharp change in worldview from neocon to pure populist. ===== The long illustrated story of Polistra's Dream is a time-travel fable, attempting to answer the dangerous revision of New Deal history propagated by Amity Shlaes. The Dream has 8 episodes, linked in a chain from the first. This entry explains the Shlaes connection.

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