Which Revolution Do You Trust?

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Paul Woodward takes issue with David Dayen's doubt about the armed rebels:

Are we supposed to distrust any uprising in which Facebook doesn’t play a prominent role? Or is the fundamental reason for mistrusting the Libyan rebels because they fairly swiftly armed themselves after hundreds of unarmed demonstrators had been killed? ...

The fact is that peaceful protest movements can be crushed. The partial successes in Tunisia and Egypt says less about the indomitable force of people power, than it says about the extent to which the autocratic leaders in each of those countries were constrained in how far they could go in violently suppressing their own people while still retaining Western support. ... Gaddafi knew from the moment the uprising burst forth, that he wasn’t going to get any protection from the West and thus he did not fear condemnation for his brutality. That’s why he has shown no restraint in his fight for survival. It would be ironic if he now found he was being offered a lifeline by those who oppose Western intervention in Libya.

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