A Blog by the Editor of The Middle East Journal

Putting Middle Eastern Events in Cultural and Historical Context

Monday, June 15, 2009

Shots Fired?

Now there are reports that shots have been fired at today's big rally. Until now the government forces have not sought to crush the demonstration despite officially banning it. A spark could be very dangerous at this point, with some estimates of the crowd ranging into the hundreds of thousands.

At this point, in the age of Twitter and Facebook, it may be best to watch events develop and avoid either predictions or prescriptions of policy. I don't know, and I suspect those on the scene don't know, if the next act is the storming of the Bastille, or an Iranian Tienanmen, or something quite different. What is clear is that this is turning into the biggest thing in years, and I think the regime may have realized that today.

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