Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Authoritarian Regimes Censor News From Iran

By Ariana Eunjung Cha
Washington Post Foreign Service
Saturday, June 27, 2009

BEIJING -- Out of fear that history might repeat itself, the authoritarian governments of China, Cuba and Burma have been selectively censoring the news this month of Iranian crowds braving government militias on the streets of Tehran to demand democratic reforms.

Between 1988 and 1990, amid a lesser global economic slump, pro-democracy protests that appeared to inspire and energize one another broke out in Eastern Europe, Burma, China and elsewhere. Not all evolved into full-fledged revolutions, but communist regimes fell in a broad swath of countries, and the global balance of power shifted.

A similar infectiousness has shown up in subtle acts of defiance by democracy advocates around the world this week.

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