I wonder how many readers watched the BBC2 documentary on democracy activists in Azerbaijan last night? The Azerbaijan government has been condemned by a whole host of organisations for undemocratic practices, including ballot rigging and intimidation and violence against the opposition. Last night we saw the police, acting on orders from the government, attack, with brutal force, peaceful protestors who had gathered to protest at the rigged election last November. Yet rather than condemn the brutality and call for fresh elections, the world's sole superpower, (you know, the one we are repeatedly told is passionate about spreading democracy around the globe) instead gives its support to the dictatorial Azerbaijan government.
How could this be so?
It surely can't have anything to do with the fact that Azerbaijan has oil and its government has sent troops to Iraq?