Failed Binary Middle East Lenses: Lebanon and Iranian Elections Edition


Chris Dierkes

Chris Dierkes (aka CJ Smith). 29 years old, happily married, adroit purveyor and voracious student of all kinds of information, theories, methods of inquiry, and forms of practice. Studying to be a priest in the Anglican Church in Canada. Main interests: military theory, diplomacy, foreign affairs, medieval history, religion & politics (esp. Islam and Christianity), and political grand bargains of all shapes and sizes.

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4 Responses

  1. Avatar E.D. Kain says:

    Fantastic analysis, Chris. But it’s just so much easier to call them “pro-Western” or “terrorist extremists” and be done with it. Can’t we just simplify things and get back to the good ol’ War on Terror?Report

  2. Avatar Chris Dierkes says:

    sadly that’s the reality.Report

  3. Avatar seth says:

    well the election day for Iran has arrived and of course the coverage of the election by the media has been non stop (cnn) and completely worthless. i swear i know less by watching these shows being told what to think by people who supposedly know all!!

    but i guess my main comment goes towards your article above which i enjoyed though not fully. so if the (scary music please) neocon wash post rubbed you the wrong way could you offer your two cents on the amazing speech given by the President today that the election is basicly a result of His Cairo speech.

    oh and i will leave juan cole alone for now.Report

  4. Avatar Chris Dierkes says:


    my sense is always that we out to view these countries politics within their own country. Same as I have always seen in Iraq. CNN is so useless because they think everything is a result of the US. I realize the President has to play politics, but that’s a stupid to thing to say. His speech I doubt had little to nothing to do with what is going on in Iran.

    All of which still doesn’t get at the key political structural question. We (the US) knocked out their two biggest enemies and there was no way that was not going to make them the regional power. Anybody with brains who studied the Iraq invasion knew the winner was going to be Iran. Period. So we did that and that got all shocked (SHOCKED!!) that Iran then wanted a spot at the big boy’s table. Surprise!! And then we act like we can shut them out. So they just said fine, we’ll do this on our own and let you bleed in Afgh and Iraq. Which is what we have done.

    If the Reformers win (and their allowed to take power), then we ought to offer them what by all rights they ought to have. A seat at the adult table. Doing that would end whatever hold the Revolutionaries have left in the government. But it would come at the cost of a much longer need for a kind of containment detente era policy towards Iran and let the Ayatollahs crumble from within, since like the Soviets they are running on a failed ideology that will eventually run out of steam.Report