by linfar, Sat Jun 20, 2009 at 10:46:49 AM EDT
I don't know about you, but I for one never grasped the committment to democrcy by the people of Iran. The protests there, at first seemed a little bit like a visitation from the moon. I mean weren't they recently part of the axis of evil?
Now, as I follow the news on twitter, at the BBC and also from Nico Pitney at Huffpo, I cannot escape my own history in this moment. This is not my first doomed uprising in a totalitarian county. I go back to Czechoslovakia, and I still remember the burning taste of ashes in my mouth as the tanks rolled into the streets of Prague. I think your first is the most heart wrenching. My eyes bled for the Czechs.
Then came Tiananmen. I lived in China for several years and so it was like watching old friends stare down tanks. I had also just crossed the border into Nepal from Tibet when the Tibetans rose up against their occupation by the Chinese in'87. I tried to leave the bus, to go back and bear witness, but it was not to be.
And now it is Iran, the latest of the uprisings that one watches in awe, afraid for them, admiring, weeping at the mighty injustice of voices against bullets.
We cannot take sides in an internal Iranian dispute. But with all my heart I say that we can concentrate our history and send it forth as a clarion call letting those who long for freedom know they have a friend here.
All the European Embassies are taking in the walking wounded in Iran today.
I am taking them into my heart, and I know millions of Americans are also. No one who stands for freedom and for free and fair elections is my enemy. The government of Iran will not keep the people of Iran separate from their friends and well wishers all over the world and especially here in America, where we value liberty and have long understood its price.