I know this is well-intentioned and I don’t want to have a pop at someone who clearly hopes for the best in Iran but isn’t there something slightly presumptuous and preachy about Michael J Totten’s Open Letter to the Iranian People?

I am all for solidarity with the Iranian students but this sort of thing gets a bit too close to lecturing them on how to conduct their struggle.

Totten is also getting a bit ahead of himself when he starts advising the Iranians on how to prepare for the post-revolutionary situation. There is clearly a lot to play out in Iran, the protests most likely aren’t even going to happen in Tehran today and the western assumption that Khatemi and/or other reformists are finished and will be swept away by one big final push is just that – a western assumption.