“Iran is the big winner here,” said a regional adviser to the United States government who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to reporters.I adore this particular genre of Times-granted anonymity, unlike the more insidious identity-hiding that the major papers engage in to allow governments and businesses to slander, attack, and discredit rivals and dissenters. There is almost a poetry to it: an opinion, snatched from the ether, deposited in a story, credited to no one in particular. Sing, O Muse! I could get better quotes for bus fare from the downtown homeless. But of course, the homeless are unbound by authorizations; they are gloriously free to utter any banality that comes to mind without the written consent of their supervisor and a Human Resources rep.
The comfortable burrow from which this particular anonymouse squeaks is a prototypical Nyawk Times chinstroker about The Ramifications of something or other, and it opens with that old, familiar Squeak Chorus:
The popular revolts shaking the Arab world have begun to shift the balance of power in the region, bolstering Iran’s position while weakening and unnerving its rival, Saudi Arabia, regional experts said.Experts! The Analysts! I sort of imagine Bill Keller and Paunch Lulzberger keep 'em in the basement, a collection of perpetually unappeased, demiurgic, liminal beings, a treasurey of diaphanous spirits from whom the occasional leg of Waverly-burnt lamb can call down an oracular pronouncement . . . or seventy. There are more "according to experts" and "said some analysts" in this article than you can fling a gallon of softened ghee at. Who are these experts, and why don't the ever say anything interesting? Do they pass around their single shared eyeball solely for the purpose of reading USA Today?
While it is far too soon to write the final chapter on the uprisings’ impact, Iran has already benefited from the ouster or undermining of Arab leaders who were its strong adversaries and has begun to project its growing influence, the analysts said.
Anyway, the junk shot of the piece is that, having maintained a tenuous regional peace in some alternate universe accessible via a musty wardrobe in a back office at Times headquarters, the US and, of course, Israel, find themselves suddenly confronted by a bunch of countries governed by something more closely approximating the wants and desires of their actual inhabitants. I am of course just as skeptical of Arab democracy as I am of the ersatz American version, but I can't help but tremble in almost gleeful anticipation of some newly liberated Emirate somewhere recognizing Palestine, and as far as the fortunes of Iran are concerned, its regional ascendence in recent years, so directly the result of America's viciously inept wars in the region, is some kinda proof that the universe truly runs on an inexhaustible karmic fuel.