February 28, 2003

Another great column from Johann

Another great column from Johann Hari, on Bush's AEI speech and the promise of democracy in the Arab world. I doubt he's right in including Syria in his list of repressive regimes that can be nudged towards incremental democratization through gentle pressure alone; Baathism is a pernicious obstacle to democracy in principle as well as in practice, and anything short of "regime change" isn't going to cut it. It's hard to argue with the overall thrust though, epitomized by this conclusion:

The democratisation of Arab and Middle East countries is one of the most exciting progressive causes in the world. It is sad that so many of us, living in comfortable democracies, seem to have forgotten the great promise that democracy offers to oppressed peoples.

I dare say many of his readers will read that quote and think "right winger." We live in a very strange time indeed.

Posted by Dr. Frank at February 28, 2003 07:04 AM | TrackBack