Stop Calling Them “Elections”

It does a disservice to Westernized democracies (and gives ammunition to Iranian apologists) to call what happened in Iran yesterday “elections.” Behind what was obviously a sham count (possibly concocted in advance of the election) is a naked and desperate grab for power by the aging Iranian regime.

Even if it had gone off without a hitch, what Iran conducted was not anything a fair-minded person would consider an “election.” For one thing, no candidate even gets on the ballot without approval of the Islamic Guardian Council. You can almost forget being elected to office if you are a non-Muslim, and non-Muslims cannot be elected President. All in all, about what you’d expect from a nation whose constitution is intertwined with the Koran.

Hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of Iranians are taking to the streets in what could be fledgling steps toward reforming a rigid and ancient theocracy. Blood is running in the streets as the mullahs desperately try to stay in power. Germany’s Angela Merkle has managed to stand up and condemn this disgrace, where is the President of the United States, the leader of the Free World?

The Telegraph’s Nile Gardiner has it right: “The Obama administration’s response to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s fraudulent election victory is cowardly, lily-livered and wrong.”

Update: President Obama finally speaks. As Allahpundit over at HotAir notes, health care is a “ticking time bomb” and George Tiller’s murder left him “shocked and outraged,” but mass beatings and brutal murders of civilians leave him “troubled.” Disgusting.

Update II: Signs of hope? This is not an annulment of the election, but the mullahs apparently feel threatened enough to at least fake a recount, even as they crack down on Western media outlets. Why, you ask? Perhaps because the backbone of their support, the Revolutionary Guards, they of terrorist watch list fame, may be showing some signs of strain.

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