Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Freedom for ... a lot of places.

You are probably watching / reading about the Libya Intervention, and you've likely got the sense that all these Tunisia-Egypt-(a lot of places) Uprisings might just be connected... you'd be right, with the exception of Bahrain which appears to be as much external destabilization as a genuine rising.

Here are two more places to watch, one old news and one very very new on the scene:

Yemen: The uprising there has been fueled as much by the new mood as by the old issues of the North-South divide. The tide is running solidly against the regime now, with even ranking military officers (and co-tribalists of President Saleh) going over to the insurrection. Saleh himself seems to be just trying to get favorable terms under which to leave... another good student of the great Arab Nationalists, he. No need to stick around for the lamppost party after the change in management comes...

Syria: The threat to the Assad regime started slowly this time, and was met with the usual crackdowns and arrests, but... it is still growing. More telling, neither of the traditional opponent groups to the regime are in the picture. The splits are tribal, sectarian, and pragmatic now. (Driving Syria's Druze community into opposition was a particularly clumsy move by the regime.) If that means a significant portion of the State Security apparatus is now at risk of falling in with the rising, then there is a chance that al-Hurra (Arabic: the condition of being free; specifically the opposite of enslaved) may come to Syria.

If only...

May this wind continue to blow, and that even far Iran feels it.


Web Sources Reminder:

Besides the major and local media, which may be beyond your ability to judge for veracity (or to read!), here are a couple analysts and a source for in-region media reports that I recommend without reservation:

Your best source for analysis and understanding of matters Yemeni: Jane Novak at Armies of Liberation.

A very good and informed source for the same on Iran and Middle Eastern matters, although of a well-intended bias (that I agree with): Michael Ledeen at Faster, Please! on Pajamas Media.

Original Source Material can also be found in great abundance and translated reliably at MEMRI, the Middle East Media Research Institute. (link is to their 'blog. Homepage has original source video and more.)

No comments: