Once again, Westerners are trying to analyze things happening in non-Western countries through their own distorted ideological lens. As Bahrain descends into unrest, Western progressives and conservatives alike refuse to abandon the vocabulary they use in their own political discourse. Why is it that so many Westerners are completely incapable of realizing that many things that go on in the world do not fit into the democracy versus tyranny dichotomy?
Democracy is simply not a concept that is of much interest to a wide variety of cultures. (I know that my people couldn't care less about it, for example.) What's happening in Bahrain is based on long-standing tensions between Sunnis and Shiites. This is not a confrontation about democracy as much as it is a religious conflict. Anybody who pontificates on the "people's movements" in the region without mentioning the Sunni-Shiite animosity is simply trying to fit an alien reality into a convenient box.