Thursday, June 18, 2009
I think it would be great if Neil Young would compose a song memorializing the protesters killed in Iran earlier this week, along the lines of the tune "Ohio" that he wrote after the killings of four Kent State University students marching against the Vietnam war nearly 40 years ago. Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young recorded and performed the song in 1970, and the group still performs the piece (this YouTube post apparently was initially recorded in March, 2000, in Toronto):
There is a large expatriate Iranian population in the U.S., and I am sure Mr. Young would have quite a few volunteers offering to help him translate the lyrics of his new song into Farsi. He could use this cool ap from Google, but Farsi isn't available yet. Google needs to get on that.
I realize it would be tough to have the new song ready for tomorrow's predicted showdown in Tehran, but anytime soon would probably be good enough. I think that the students and the massive population in Iran that is under 30 years of age would be quite excited if a Western rock star (Canadian, in Mr. Young's case) recognized their efforts and sacrifices.
It's high time that politically activist popular musicians start protesting in song against governments other than the U.S. (in fairness, there were concerts against the apartheid regime in South Africa, but that is ancient history by pop culture standards). It's time for the artistic world to stand up against truly repressive regimes.
Robert Baer at Time magazine: "Before we go too far down the road cheering the forces of Iranian democracy, let's not forget that its public face, Mir-Hossein Mousavi, has American blood on his hands."
FWIW, Young put together a song in the immediate aftermath of 911 based upon Todd Beamer's calling card "Lets roll". The song exhibited menace and resolve against the hijackers. I wonder if he later repudiated the sentiments evoked by the song after he jumped aboard the anti-Bush bandwagon.
I suspect if he did write something regarding the events in Iran it would be disagreeably squishy.
I hear you loud and clear, DEC. I read that piece by Baer, who should know what he is talking about. See my link to Jake Tapper on Mousavi in the post below.
See also this brief bio sketch of Mousavi at about.com, and comments posted today by Michael Totten about Mousavi.
To paraphrase Donald Rumsfeld, sometimes you start an uprising with the leader you have, not the leader you want. It may be wishful thinking on the part of Americans who want success for the protesters, and real change in Iran, but the hope is that the movement is greater than one man at this point.
It is not and never was Mousavi that was interesting about this event. It was the fact that so many people are willing to stand up to the regime. There's nothing special about Mousavi; the candidate could be just about anyone.
Escort81 and Dawnfire82 (hmm... never noticed that "numerology" before) are right, of course. I haven't heard much that's positive about Mousavi, but the key event is the protestors trying to take the country back from the mullahs. Any success they have in reducing the power of the current regime is a distinct benefit for our national interest, regardless of Mousavi.
the key event is the protestors trying to take the country back from the mullahs
Then the mullahs have run a successful counterintelligence mission. Their opposition have publicly outed themselves, making them easy targets for being rounded up and shot.
Yeah, we hate you stupid hippies and want you locked up like the traitors you are!!! Stoopid Hippie Commie Muslim Punk!!!! MAKE MY DAY Traitor!
(Oh, and by the way, would you like to join us in supporting those Iranians we wanted to exterminate six months ago?)
The author of this post reveals he knows little of Neil Young as an artist if he thinks Young is going to just churn out a song on the demand of outsiders (based on their political ideologies). Young has always, much to the frustration and consternation of his biggest fans and benefactors alike, done his own thing.