The other say on Hannity’s show, Anne Coulter said:
“George Bush helps the Iranians. They saw fellow Muslims living in freedom and democracy in Iraq, and that’s what inspired this.”
Now let’s take a look at this.
Here are some of the actual reasons for the protests:
- Obviously, the outcome (many irregularities were found in the voting) — From the Tehran Bureau, “They’re protesting because the government thought it could make fools of them. All this was a play, it was a movie. It wasn’t real. It was a charade. People are hopeless and depressed because they were played with, not because Mousavi lost.”
- Frustration over the worsening economy and unemployment, despite high oil revenues.
- The “Marriage Crisis” — tied into the economy, basically “It refers to the rising number of young people of marrying age who cannot afford to marry or are choosing not to tie the knot.” It was another factor that served to alienate Iran’s young population from the government.
- Anger at Ahmadinejad’s poor global image and the poor image of Iran as a “terrorist nation”
Also, directly opposing Coulter’s claim that George Bush is to thank for all the protests in Iran is the opinion of Iranians. Here’s one (from an article entitled “I speak for Mousavi. And Iran.” nonetheless!):
“Now the Americans have Obama and we have our version of Bush. We need an Obama who can find solutions for Iran’s problems.”
I’ll go with Mohsen Makhmalbaf (the author of that article) over Ann Coulter on this one.
Coulter also said:
“Curiously, this idea that the protesters would suddenly decide ‘oh no we’re going to stop protesting’ if Obama put in a kind word for them”.
I have not seen anyone making this claim. What she seems to be referring to is the idea that any policy statements from the US Government towards Iran will be utilized by the Iranian government to as propaganda to fight the protesters by saying: “Look, foreign forces like the US are inciting this rebellion”. Not only is it true, but it’s already started happening with the Iranian government blaming the CIA and the US and other foreign media.
On the media point, it should be noted that in Iran, media is government run, so there may or may not be the perception in Iran that by the US media running stories about the Iranian protests, it is actually the US government functioning through the media.