Friday, July 17, 2009

Fern's First Flame!

I feel a rant coming on.

I'm no kid, as most of y'all know - over 50, been politically involved for over 30 years now, worked doing domestic violence and rape counseling for over 10 years, run my own business (soon to be busineses) etc. I've been around the block a few times and have political, social, and economic bona fides.

So when folks do 'calls for action' on, say, Twitter, I want to know EXACTLY what they want done. "Support those protesting the #IranElection fraud" is a prime example. Let's review - I've been involved in women's rights, freedom from sexual assault, freedom from domestic violence, active in groups in the US that fought apartheid in South Africa, was asking the US govt. and people to impose sanctions on the Taliban govt of Afghanistan for AGES before the US went in there after Bin Laden, etc. So if someone tries to tell me "Call on the West to take action!", I ask exactly what action do they want the West to take? I've not gotten an answer yet on that, other than I'm supposed to join Amnesty International (as if I've not been a member since the 70's?). The people sort of say that they want Reporters Without Borders to document what's going on, and AI to do that as well.

But when asked if they want sanctions and deinvestment - silence. No response. Oh, wait, there was THIS tweet "witchygoddess10 @Fernwise And I cannot support any nation that feels it has the entitlement to rape women and abuse people. If you don't agree, that's fine."

Gosh, that because I asked 'exactly what do you want 'the West' to do'? Snort. BTW, witchygoddess10 - just because you delete a tweet doesn't mean it goes away - it may be out of your personal time line, but they still show up on Search ... as do the replies. At least for 3 weeks, not sure if any of the search engines will have it after that.

Yes, I know what effects sanctions had on Iraq when imposed by the GWBush administration. I also saw what sanctions - and more importantly deinvestment - did to promote change in South Africa. OTOH, South Africa now has the highest rate of rape in the world. I'm not saying that sanctions will necessarily work in the case of Iran, anyway - in South Africa those working for change were branded 'commies' by the PTB there, so the PTB weren't about to trade or accept other aid from the USSR or China. Iran DOES get aid/support from Russia, and I don't see Russia joining in sanctions and deinvestment.

I expect that when folks tweet wanting others to take action that they are taking action, have a game plan, have SPECIFIC ACTIONS that they want SPECIFIC GROUPS to do. Merely joining AI or whatever isn't specific. Recording abuses is fine, but what will simply recording them do?

Maybe the movie "Gandhi" made it seem like the press spreading word about British govt abuses in India made the Brits move out. Very dramatic for a movie. Not exactly accurate. What got the Brits out was that they had to put all resources they could into rebuilding their island nation after WWII and couldn't support an army in India. Heck, with all the resources that were also going into rebuilding mainland Europe, the British people were on SHORTER rations AFTER the war than DURING the war (US food stocks weren't just feeding them any more, but feeding much of the mainland as well).

But even if you think that publicizing abuses had an impact on the British govt - the Brit govt had to face more real elections, so if the British people objected to what they were doing in India they'd have faced being thrown out of office. The Iranian people ALREADY know the score, they ALREADY voted for moderate change. How does the rest of the world knowing affect that govt? Yes, if ALL nations imposed sanctions, if MOST countries/companies deinvested, that would do it - but, again, their main trading partners are NOT about to do that, even with abuses publicized.

The only way change is going to come to Iran is with the people continuing to be ungovernable. Will more people die? Yes.

Kind of like how the US revolution went, eh? How did the rest of the world help the US revolution? The main sacred stories we have on that are about individuals coming over and fighting with us. Marquis de Lafayette did, among others. Yes, France put in a naval blockade - mostly because they wanted British territory in Canada and in Asia and the naval involvement was part of THAT strategy.

Now, it could be that donating to the Red Crescent might bring medical aid to the protesters - I have no idea (RC isn't mentioning that on their web site!). That might be directly useful, or it might not. I have no info on how corrupt or not the RC is there. I stopped donating to the Red Cross in the US ages ago.

But, ANYONE who calls ANYONE to vague action ought to EXPECT to be asked what SPECIFIC action they want taken. And they ought to actually have a logical answer.

I'm just sayin' .....

Forcibly, Fern

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