You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘Iran’ tag.

Jafar Kazemi and Mohammad Ali Haj Aqhaei were put to death yesterday despite international pressure. They had apparently distributed literature and videos pertaining to the post-election uprisings some months back.

Unfortunately, groups like Code Pink have a blind spot on this.  As recently as this last June Code Pink and the Feminist Majority were calling for Iran to be placed on the UN’s Commission on the Status of Women.  (Edit – This doesn’t appear to be the case)

Progressives in the US have a history to be proud of in many respects, but far too often we are on the wrong side of history in other countries.  Code Pink has apparently resolved its brief struggle with reality.

Can anyone find any statements from Code Pink or similar groups about these two prior to their killings yesterday?  Or this incident involving the rape/murder of a young woman?

At least the anti-death penalty activists were on it.  And Amnesty International.  But so far all I can find is dead silence from the “anti-war” left – no mention of the killings whatsoever at the Code Pink site.

Nine demonstrators were shot dead in Tehran today, including Seyyed Ali Mousavi, nephew to Mir-Hossein Mousavi who allegedly lost the recent presidential election.

This video is from Al Jazeera.

And a recap of the previous round.

And this Kos post discusses the dearth of media coverage and speculates as to the cause.

I don’t know much about this woman or her art.  I don’t know what the song is about.  What I know is that she has one of the most beautiful voices I’ve heard.

The few facts I have are as follows.  She is living in Turkey, but she is Iranian Azeri (Azerbaijani-related ethnicity).  Her language has been banned in Iranian schools.  She has a Facebook page and several videos on Youtube.  Haven’t found any articles on her, so her fame appears to be online and fairly homegrown.  If anybody knows anything else, please post what you have.

Not a lot of confirmation at this point, but it’s being reported that six people arrested have been hanged.  Rose has a photo of what appears to be hanged individuals up, but the source to which she links doesn’t state its origin.  I’d be a little wary.  A photo was distributed last week purported to be a body of someone hacked up in what was reported as a massacre in Baharestan Square, but it was later revealed as an older photo.

Cautions aside, it is a horrible situation based on the confirmed information and the sooner the Iranian people rid themselves of their current regime the better.

Addendum: I suspect this is where the photo came from.

Addendum: Open letter of support for the Iranian demonstrators – signed by a number of left writers and academics including Noam Chomsky, Juan Cole, and Judith Butler

“Iran has executed its Tiananmen Square.”

Very disturbing photo through the link.

More as it comes to me.  I’m really not finding much.  Even my twitter link below doesn’t have much.  Any help would be appreciated.


Second addendum:

And what is purported to be a letter from within Iran.

Third addendum: A skirmish between baton wielding police and stubborn demonstrators, including a woman knocked to the ground who gets right back up and into the officers’ faces until a gentleman steps in between them.

More photos and info hereAnd here.

Fourth addendum: Andrew Sullivan is keeping very good track of events and the fluctuating streams of information.  Apparently cell phone networks are being shut down.  In this clip, demonstrators are rushing the police.

Brave souls, but the numbers appear much lower than last week’s events – understandably.  The events of the day are depressing, but I’m getting a feeling of permanence to this opposition.  Iran could usher in an historic breakthrough.  It’s going to take some initiative in existing power centers however.  Some humanitarianism, or even just some personally ambitious pol or military leader – I’m not picky.

Paramilitary HQ in flames.

This collection of portions of interviews from the Sunday shows illustrates precisely the difference between liberal and conservative (as defined by politics) foreign policy approaches.  The Republicans are calling for saber rattling from Obama, while Democrats are pushing for a more nuanced approach which prevents the Iranian regime from changing the subject and making the US the foil.  McCain says it all when he says it’s about us, about making Americans feel good.  Well, it’s not about us and I’m grateful the grown-ups are in charge.

Obama has confirmed as much.

Addendum: Endgame near?

Somewhere there’s a video of a young woman shot and killed as she’s standing right by her father.  I’m not sure it’s in one of these collections.  But I hope it’s being spread around, as difficult as it must be to watch.  I don’t really want to see it.  When I read about it last night I went to where my daughter was sleeping and gave her a hug.  For all our problems in terms of budgets, land use battles, reggae wars – I watch these vids and I’m so happy I’m raising my kids in Redway.

First collection – Streets on Fire.

Second collection, mostly vids – Defiance.

These were posted yesterday.  Probably more out today.

Note the use of cell phones and twitter.

I really hope something comes of this.  This is about Iran, but if this leads to a change in power and a return to the political system of, say, the early 1950s before we helped to mess it up, it could usher in a Muslim reformation across the board.  Probably the election last week as tampered with, but how are countries like Saudi Arabia and Jordan for free and fair elections?

Addendum: I should add that while I’ve been very disappointed with Obama of late, I’m really glad Obama is in office right now.  The last thing the Iranian opposition needs is for American leadership to be blustering like the GOP has been doing over the past week (some of them are comparing the perceived political bravery of “tea parties” to the demonstrations in Tehran and comparing the oppression of Iranians to the “oppression” Republicans are facing in Congress – Wonkette’s on it).  Calm but firm commentary is in order, and Obama has played this one cool, hopefully working hard behind the scenes.  His statement of today is perfect, though perhaps not emotionally satisfying to the hawkish set.

The Iranian government must understand that the world is watching. We mourn each and every innocent life that is lost. We call on the Iranian government to stop all violent and unjust actions against its own people. The universal rights to assembly and free speech must be respected, and the United States stands with all who seek to exercise those rights.

As I said in Cairo, suppressing ideas never succeeds in making them go away. The Iranian people will ultimately judge the actions of their own government. If the Iranian government seeks the respect of the international community, it must respect the dignity of its own people and govern through consent, not coercion.

Martin Luther King once said – “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.” I believe that. The international community believes that. And right now, we are bearing witness to the Iranian peoples’ belief in that truth, and we will continue to bear witness.

Second addendum: You can follow some Iranian dissent Twittering here.  The following was twittered yesterday:

People are apparently being marked to be dragged away in the night by the secret police. For activists there is no turning back.

from Twitter


And I can’t find it, but last night I read a twitter from Mousavi anticipating his arrest and calling for a strike when it happens.

Third addendum: Cracks in the unity of Iran’s present leadership?

And from Common Dreams: Iran’s Revolution is homegrown and must stay that way.

Fourth addendum: Okay, for those of you dismissing the protestors and looking for evidence of CIA instigation against this poor defenseless regime being punished for standing up to Israel, THIS is what you’re defending. I’m sorry, but anything other than a raw outrage with the regime just seems callous to me.  These people are fighting tyranny of the worst order.  Period.  No mitigation because they’re opposing Israel or “US imperialism.”  If there is any such thing as evil, it’s exemplified by the Iranian regime.  This the Warsaw Ghetto circa 1942.  Czechoslovakia circa 1967.  Year Zero Cambodia circa 1976.  Indonesia circa 1965.  This is Chile circa 1972.  El Salvador circa 1981.  China circa 1989.

And here’s a cheerful opinion left on Youtube for this very vid.

who gives a shit about these ignorant Muslims? I hope they kill each other

Fifth addendum: The taboo is broken. Protesters are openly defying Khameinei.  In fact, the slogans are aimed directly at him.

Sixth addendum: Obama’s low key policy is drawing kudos from…. Pat Buchanan.

And more on the cleric rift.

And this woman says, “no matter who is president of Iran, they would stone me.”

And from another – “I grab a brick and throw.  I never thought I’d do it.” and “for me, I wouldn’t die for someone like Mousavi. But if there’s greater change at stake, then it’s worth it.”

We haven’t seen anything like this since 1979.

Mir Hossein Mousavi addressed a crowd of hundreds of thousands to mourn those killed in the demonstrations.  There is hope in the air, but not everybody is sanguine about the chances for change.

Addendum: Received this note on Facebook.  More info as I get it.

Several global trade union organizations have joined with Amnesty International in calling for a Global Day of Solidarity on June 26 to highlight the cases of Mansour Osanloo and other jailed Iranian trade unionists, including those still in detention following the repression of the May Day rallies last month.

Meanwhile this ex-hostage says the US, at least officially, should just keep quiet and let things play out on their own.

Second addendum: A slide show on the militia assault on the University of Tehran.  Reminiscent of the hard hat workers attacks on students in NYC when the latter tried to lower the flag to half-mast following the Kent State shootings.

With chants of “death to the dictator.”

Some brave people.

There are many more very striking photos through the link above.

More film clips and photos through here.


March 2020