Dissidents Unite!

[Weekly Standard] Sonny Bunch - Next month, Natan Sharansky will give the current crop of dissidents a megaphone through which to air their grievances and aspirations and rally international support: Along with former president of the Czech Republic Vaclav Havel and former prime minister of Spain Jose Maria Aznar, Sharansky is cohosting a Conference on Democracy and Security. To be held in Prague from June 4-6, the summit will be attended by President Bush, en route to Germany for the G-8 Summit. The conference will seek to strengthen the democratic movement by bringing together political leaders and people working to create freer societies all over the world. Those in attendance will include opposition figures from "Syria, Egypt, Iraq and Iran, Cuba and North Korea, Belarus and Russia," Sharansky says. Sharansky points to Iran as a society that, like the Soviet Union before it, is rotting from the inside - a termite-infested house just waiting to collapse. He calls Iran "almost a classic example of how in one generation a country of true believers could turn into a country of doublethinkers," a term (borrowed from 1984) for those who no longer believe in the ideals of a totalitarian regime but are afraid to voice their disagreement. The opposition to the mullahs' revolution, he says, is "so massive that it could be compared with Solidarity in Poland."

2007-05-11 01:00:00

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