WSJ: our autocrats are nice thugs

The Middle East has spent decades in social and political “stability” because Washington and Israel have backed brutes to torture and demean the people.

Not to worry, writes Murdoch’s Wall Street Journal, ignore all those deeply undemocratic states; the real issue is the Islamic Republic:

The regime in Tehran—aptly described by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton yesterday as “a military dictatorship with a kind of theocratic overlay”—feels zero compunction or shame about repressing political opponents. Hosni Mubarak and Egypt’s military, dependent on U.S. aid and support, were susceptible to outside pressure to shun violence. Tehran scorns the West.

To put it another way, pro-American dictatorships have more moral scruples. The comparison is akin to what happened in the 1980s when U.S. allies led by authoritarians fell peacefully in the Philippines, South Korea and Taiwan, even as Communist regimes proved tougher.

Iran is certainly a brutal dictatorship. But the WSJ doesn’t care about that. What they can’t stand is independence from our bullying.

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