You Want a Revolution? There's a Cost
To get real change, people will have to vote with bodies, not ballots
By Katherine Thompson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 21, 2009 12:18 PM CDT
Supporters of opposition leader Mir Hossien Mousavi set fire to a barricade as they protest in Tehran on Saturday, June 20, 2009.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – When revolution came to Iran in 1979, it took thousands of people taking to the streets to finally break down the shah's authority. Now the revolutionary government has all that power and oil money, and the only way to elect a leader it doesn't approve of is with bodies, not ballots, writes Thomas Friedman in the New York Times.

"Iran’s mullahs were always ready to allow voting, as long as the counting didn’t matter," Friedman writes, so "a regime like Iran’s can only be brought down or changed if enough Iranians vote as they did in 1979—in the street. That is what the regime fears most, because then it either has to shoot its own people or cede power."