Wednesday, October 7, 2009

A quick survey; if you please?

-What do you check my blog for?
-Do you prefer War/Sanctions/Talk with coup d'etat regime?
-Do you wonder what happened to the protest to election results?
-Why, if IRI is so notorious, aren't people afraid to chant slogans in buses and metros?
-Do you agree with me that the nuclear issue is red herring?



Anonymous said...

Hi naj,

-What do you check my blog for?
To see you, your passion, your artistic and critical views. Your sense of true investigative journalism.

-Do you prefer War/Sanctions/Talk with coup d'etat regime?
It's not a real regime of the coup d'etat but anyway I prefer talking.

-Do you wonder what happened to the protest to election results?
No, there are many ways that people can show their opposition and I think Iranians are using the most dynamic and less costly methods. It should serve as an example to any nation in similar situations.

-Why, if IRI is so notorious, aren't people afraid to chant slogans in buses and metros?
Because people after so a few decades of lack of trust have found each other. And also the regime is not really one single notorious machine. It's very divided and fractured from within itself and changing by day. So much so that people know and feel it and take advantage of this.

-Do you agree with me that the nuclear issue is red herring?
Every nation is entitled to peaceful energy. However if the price for Iran to pay is international isolation, they should stop the non-sense and show to the world that they want to negotiate and they let the inspection. And they really want energy not the bomb.

You're welcome
Peace, V >>>

Anonymous said...

I check your blog for all news on Iran. I understand that you choose to blog about the news that interest you, but at times, it takes someone who knows the culture to get the nuances of the different news that come out of Iran.

I have to confess, I did not know much about comtemporary Iran, I know some things about Persia. The "good" that has come out of this turmoil the last couple of months is to open the eyes of the world to see Iran of Sohrab and Neda, far different from Iran of Ahmadinejad. That a lot of Iranians actually like America, and some would like to visit some day. The "marg bar America" crowed is just a small part of the country.

That Iran is full of vibrant and well informed people who just want to be free from a tyrannical government. All these people have inspired me, for the first time in my life I attended a protests! I watched the youtuube videos and I was horrified by the actions of the regime towards its own people.

Like Mossavi said the people have awoken after so many years of injustice by this "Islamic" regime, and they have decided that it is now or never.

I think the noise about the nuclear issue is just noise to distract us, BUT I beleivr that the Revolutionary Guards are really working on nuclear bombs. From the way I saw them treat their own people this summer, may God help us all if these people get their hands on nuclear weapons.

One last thing, there is nothing Islamic about these leaders. They are just a bunch of corrupt people using God to justify their brutality. I would not want to worship a God that condone such barbaric behaviour.

Jan said...

1) For news or a different point of view about thing I've already learned about.

2) It's always better to talk. If you don't engange someone you can't change him.

3) Yes and no. That the unorganized demonstrations stopped is not surprising after such a brutal crackdown. So it's not surprising that the way to protest changed. But it is that the opposition leaders don't make more use of organized mass demonstrations. For me that proves that they don't want to overthrow the regime but to merely change it.

3) I don't know why the people still find the courage to chant slogans although they risk so much. I'm not Iranian. I'm German. People must be really, really frustrated and angry.

4) I do agree. Iran doesn't need nuclear energy to provide the country with cheap energy. It needs the nuclear program to create one crisis after another so that the regima can claim to challenge the western, imperialistic countries.

Anonymous said...

>During the immediate election aftermath, I realized that this was going to be another one of those times when my usual news sources were worthless. I learned through trial and error that your blog, pedestrian, khordaad88 and enduring america, and onlymehdi were reliable and likely to provide info in ENGLISH (my most frustrating limitation!)
Since that time, I've become a regular visitor because I have found that I love YOUR choice of topics and the discussions that go on in the comments.
>Never war. Never sanctions. Always talk even if an evil madman or two currently have a tenuous hold on power.
>I see the evidence of the ongoing protest in the amazing letters translated here and elsewhere and the videos. I don't wonder what has happened to it; I wonder how it has persisted under such duress!
>I get a knot of fear in my gut when I see/hear videos of people in Iran protesting because I know there will be more suffering for some. But I also choke up with emotion/pride that people can be so brave to fight for their rights.
Are they not afraid?
>I believe the 'nuclear issue' is both real AND serving as a distraction... the worst of both.
What will you do with the results of your survey?

Parvati said...

-What do you check my blog for?

Inside-Iran info, quirks, rants, mood-indicators, debate.. plus your own personal line in passion, irony, warmth, charm...-)

-Do you prefer War/Sanctions/Talk with coup d'etat regime?

Obviously the latter: war would be criminal, sanctions hurt ordinary people far more than rulers. However, I strongly object to excessive cozy-cozying with coup-elite let alone kissing 'em on the mouth.

-Do you wonder what happened to the protest to election results?

No, thanks to your blog and others: still alive and kicking on rooftops, in universities, at football stadiums and on subways.

-Why, if IRI is so notorious, aren't people afraid to chant slogans in buses and metros?

My guess is they're afraid but brave - and sudden, unpredictable and quickly self-dispersing "flash-demos" are far less dangerous to participants than big marches.

-Do you agree with me that the nuclear issue is red herring?

It's a red herring in the sense that it's a huge hypocrisy-festival - 5+1 participants pretending to believe and-be-alarmed-by what they themselves know is a load of bs. Real object of "western" posturings is to do Israel (in the US's case) and the US (in the Europeans' case) a big favour - bottom line is that Israel doesn't want to be regionally-counterbalanced by an Iran that has achieved "nuclear latency" + even higher regional status via developing and controlling its own enrichment programme.

berensma said...


(MarcLord here really)

Q1) I check for general news on Iran from a smart dissident's perspective.

Q2) No real preference; in fact I don't feel qualified to discriminate between the subjects. I respect your opinions, but do know that the US has financed an opposition in accord with the Velvet model; this doesn't mean there isn't a coup d'etat and there was surely a pathetically stolen election. I do see their external negotiating effectiveness, which still puts ours to shame, and feel kind of powerless over their internal human rights abuses.

Q3) one comparable that comes to mind is Ireland in 1916. The protests were put down, but it didn't resolve the situation.

Q4) Naj, there's no way the American people could've gotten away with the level of aggression & spontaneous gathering that the Iranian people did. Possibly hard for you to imagine, but true. So my guess is that the people realize that the IRI has been told not to crack down unless certain boundaries have been crossed.

Q5) Totally. I haven't blogged about it because explaining it to an American (my readers, for the most part) is so very involved. Bottom line, Iran needs nuclear power to generate electricity because Rafsanjani knows how depleted the oil fields really are, and the West wants to sell them the technology instead of Russia, which has the inside track. To Israel, a nuclear power plant is the equivalent of a nuclear missile, so it will bomb a nuclear power plant. This last problem is the only issue in the whole circus which is not a red herring. It is the barking seal bouncing the ball up in the air for so many years now.

Pedestrian said...

-What do you check my blog for?
Two reasons:
I like the issues you cover and I find your views very refreshing.

Iranfacts is the only English Iranian blog I know that isn't "out there" - that is, it never feels "out of touch" and naive or snobbish. One thing that bothers me about the expat community a lot of the time is the snobbish tone with which they talk about Iran and I love how that's not the case here.

-Do you prefer War/Sanctions/Talk with coup d'etat regime?

War and sanctions: NO!
But I'm not sure about the talk. But we've talked about that before. I'm more pro-talk with some doubts.

-Do you wonder what happened to the protest to election results?

Nope ... it has unfolded in a painful, fascinating way and I've watched it unfold so I don't wonder "what happened"

-Why, if IRI is so notorious, aren't people afraid to chant slogans in buses and metros?
Because in my lifetime at least they have never been. Part of my memories of going to school in Iran are listening to the totally unheard of conversations on buses and taxis. I think this is not a new development, it's just LOUDER now.

-Do you agree with me that the nuclear issue is red herring?


German said...

Dear Naj,

In the course of the election campaign more democracy seemed to have a chance. This is still the hope of any democrat, having also observed via the modern media, how many people in Iran supported this democratic reform movement. Your blog corresponds to that in various ways and on various levels, i.e. socio-politically and culturally.

On the part of democratically minded Iranians the political cautious approach, supported also by your blog, seems plausible.
On the part of the outside foreign world, a military interference would be the worst possible way to react to whatsoever, as it would enforce a truce between the Iranian democratic scepticists and the Iranian regime with its large entourage and backing, e.g. by their ideologically indoctrinated parallel armed forces (basiji, sepah / IRGC). Thus careful, guarded, cautious attempts on the part of foreign governments to somehow mitigate Iranian undemocratic inner politics, in reaction to an obviously non-elected, but imposed government would be plausible.

The Iranian voters are not only courageous, but are – more important - also wise; knowing to weigh up the possible and the desirable, knowing to adapt to a realistic assessment of the situation they obviously have a deep understanding of the differing range and reach of the concepts »strategy« and »tactics«.

Here the Iranians seem to deviate massively from attitudes and behavioral patterns to be expected in e.g. Germany. Don't ask my why. In Germany people are generally and on the average rather cowardly - or more prudent (?). Though this cowardice is sometimes suffocating.
As a foreigner, one can only guess – probably wrongly - , why in Iran people behave differently in this respect.
Here some (helpless and very probably wrong) guesses:
 first of all an incomparable bravery and courage, long-suppressed hopes and long-term disappointment;
 a war that had to be waged not so long ago
 a militarized, ideologized society, used to view at problems militarily
 the radicalized “revolutionary” politics and way to express oneself politically, the also verbally radical way of the expression of ideas and of the reactions to the expression of divergent opinions – e.g a strong hatred of dissident views as a sort of tradition (?) – at least is looks like that from an outsider’s view
 possible reasons might be the notion of “revolution” and the contents to be associated with the way such a state sees itself;
 the tradition of “martyrs”
In brief: any Iranian could find better, correcter and more plausible answers to that question.

Of course, but in addition and in particular in the following way:
The nuclear issue is one of the few props and effective means through which the non-legitimized Iranian government/president has a chance to rally support of the overwhelming majority of Iranians and thus to rally and acquire legitimization in the eyes of the majority. As to oppositional politicians: even the suppressed, i.e. non-permitted, opposition movement of any political creed is necessarily subject to this general social, mental and ideological constraint; if a politician expressed a divergent opinion on this issue, he would definitely lose support.
All the same it seems to be necessary in some nearer or rather more distant future – if there is no death penalty any longer, and if there is some sort of freedom of expression – to discuss the differences between the right to make use of nuclear power on the one hand and a “tradition” to provoke influential countries obediently following the motto
“as long as we, i.e. the government/president, will be able to create and produce enemies, a continuous, uninterrupted inner-political »truce« will necessarily prevail and a democratic opposition will find it still more difficult to develop, as this question will justify any oppression under the excuse of and with the demand for complete unity - against these self-generated enemies”

Thank you very much for your blog.

Take care, all the best


Masoud said...

(1) Updates and analysis on the situation in Iran
(2) I am against sanctions 99% of the time. I have no problem with targeted sanctions freezing the personal financial accounts of regime insiders. For example, the United Kingdom reportedly confiscated over $1 billion of Mojtaba Khamenei's wealth earlier this summer. In situations like this, where the people don't summer, I give my support. No war, under any circumstances. As far as engagement, it's a tricky situation. I understand if the US needs to engage, because it is after US interests, not those of the Green movement. But I do worry about granting the coup legitimacy.
(3) Qods Day was a testament that this movement has not gone away, but merely gone underground, only as to avoid torture, rape, and murder. The people are still protesting. This movement is becoming a deepening grass roots, and that will be much more powerful. You don't need people in the streets, necessarily.
(4)Because in times when such things are chanted, the spirit of "maa hameh ba ham hasteem" overcomes, and the power-in-numbers is realized.
(5) Red-herring for the IRI? Yes, I think they are using it as leverage to get badly needed legitimacy. But the West is just going after its own interests, and I do think it is genuine in its fear of a nuclear Iran. The coup is just trying to exploit that for domestic gains.

David said...

Hi Naj,

I read your blog to help me better understand what is happening in Iran. I don't look for particular topics.

About the nuclear issue, I am concerned. Iran certainly has the right to develop a nuclear power industry, but I don't want Ahmadinejad and the criminals and the religious fanatics who support him to have access to nuclear weapons. They could not be trusted to allow a fair election. They have murdered peaceful protesters in the streets and tortured and killed arrested prisoners in jail. This fascist cadre can't be trusted on any level. They have been deceiving the international community for years regarding their nuclear program. It seems obvious to me that they intend to develop nuclear weapons if they can. I don't believe any level of sanctions will stop them. Sanctions didn't end Saddam's regime, they only entrenched his power more deeply while causing great harm to Iraq's people. I think the same will be true in Iran, assuming Russia and China abided by the sanctions, which they probably would not. Endless negotiating will only buy Ahmadinejad and company more time to develop and build nuclear weapons. I am very sorry to say it, but maybe military action is the only way to stop them. But, the last thing America needs is another war. It will bankrupt us completely. If Israel attacks, they will do some damage, but I don't think it will be a big setback to the nuclear program. The Iranian dictators will undoubtedly respond and do a lot of damage back to Israel by whatever means they can. Perhaps the dictators hope an attack will happen. They can channel the anger and fear of the general population from the attack into more power for themselves. So, most likely, nothing will stop the Iranian dictatorship from developing nuclear weapons. The world may just have to learn to live with a nuclear armed Iran. Perhaps the only hope is to encourage the Iranian opposition movement and hope they can somehow reclaim Iran from the dictators.

Sorry I haven't commented much lately. I do check in and read some posts, though, even if I don't always comment.

Take care.

Mark Pyruz said...

Naj, you offer a unique perspective. It's that simple for me.

So far, my favorite post was the video clip of the santour musicians.

Your reporting usually beats out Tehran Bureau by about a day, and even then your perspective is a more personal and sincere.

Thanks for the time, and for the education.

-Mark Pyruz

Sojourner said...

-What do you check my blog for?

for things other than the rest of your questions... Don't get me wrong.

Naj said...

thanks friends,

yours truly's sickly.

more disturbing shit is happening in iran:
a monarchist condemned to death--to test and see if the greens will react. if they do, they will call them all monarchit, if they don't they have succeeded in splitting the people. of course people are already protesting this verdict.

more artists are banned from getting out of the country (fateme motamed arya)

and white house and congress are mulling over sanction or not crap

keep your comments coming-i love to hear from you.

let's hope i havn't kissed the swine ... argh!

Demeur said...

Unlike any time in history people are now able to get a true perspective of the views of a country without it being filtered by some news outlet or government. We can now get a handle on the fears and hopes of what's happening. Truth can be verified and lies dispelled. That is the greatest of value. No longer can a government dehumanize an entire population while its' people can get their views online.
It doesn't matter what you write about. The more knowledge your readers gain from you the more they'll realize that they are not much different.

German said...

"The more knowledge your readers gain from you the more they'll realize that they are not much different." - a great, rightly monumental sentence by Demeure !Thank you !


Anonymous said...

-What do you check my blog for?
You are on my favs. When things get too complicated, I'd check with my list.

-Do you prefer War/Sanctions/Talk with coup d'etat regime?
No war, no sanctions, no talk.
War is horrible, every kid knows. Let's not step back into primitive. Sanctions usually are not directed versus a government, but against a country. As Mr. Mahmud Ahmadinejad is not the elected president, it is just wrong. As for the rest, I do not know, of what use it could be, to make oneself enemy of the Iranian folks, if not to keep hostility between East and West. Talk. Not with Ahmadinejad, ex-president. Talk to ministers, build up relations with judiciary for exchange of thoughts.. indirect talks, exchange of knowhow in R&D. Many ways to talk without AN.

-Do you wonder what happened to the protest to election results?
Yes. I'm depending on Twitter. I'd like not to have to wonder.

-Why, if IRI is so notorious, aren't people afraid to chant slogans in buses and metros?
It's a mix of feelings, and when one does not fit, another does. A mix inbetween anger, frustration, horror, determination, faith, love, hatred, vision, sorrow, liability, friendship.. and this feelings are recognized and returned everywhere. People are not alone, IRI is. Thats a kind of background, as I sometimes believe to have understood.

-Do you agree with me that the nuclear issue is red herring?
The nuclear issue is a trap.
The trap consists therein, that politics, political media, political means are highly supervised. The path of performance is preplanned and under control. Tolerance towards hazardeous or spontaneous development is limited. There is a list of contingencies, you check in to one and you are on the rails. Its like biulding a house: BKP 211 means master-builder, and there you go. Everything now follows the rules of the game. Ahmadinejad played re, and they took it. They could have stepped back, it would not have changed reality.
for now..
Obama makes his President
Ahmadinejad makes his President
Netanjahu makes his Prime Minister
Ghadafi makes his Emperor of Africa ..
and some people understand, that their 'fatherly governments' left them alone.
So this red herring makes the story go on and live it out by cold war, condemning Iran to dictatorship and poverty.

German said...

Dear Naj,

My answer to your question - Do you agree with me that the nuclear issue is red herring? – is to be relativized.
Reality is faster than the ability to form one’s own opinion.

[ - Though it is true, that a telephone-survey/poll in Iran on the question “Are you for Ahmadinejad or for the opposition?” can’t be reputable, as you rightly pointed out [because the “wrong” answer might bring you in Iran - faster than you could guess - nearer to the celestial beyond and hereafter], a survey/poll on a question like “Are you for the use of nuclear energy or not?” won’t have a similar effect on your biography. – ]

Thus the following quote can perhaps or even probably to be taken as mirroring somewhat Iranian presentday reality:

“A recent survey by reveals that regular Iranians' support for the regime to develop the bomb has dropped to 38 percent, from 51 percent last year. Even support for developing nuclear energy, which a whopping 89 percent favored a year ago, is backed by only half the population now. Opposition to nukes has grown since Ahmadinejad won a disputed election in June, then cracked down hard on his rivals.”

«TEHRAN’S NUCLEAR BLOWBACK» by Jerry GUO - Newsweek, October 12, 2009 [European edition]
or identically:

By the way: your blog and the blog of your Cyber-friend Pedestrian mirror somehow the best traditions of Iranian culture as a hothouse/greenhouse of the forming and exchange of ideas, of dialogue in its best sense [thinking of the Achaemenid Empire or the Parthian/Arsacid period, the latter ones having adopted Greek culture proclaimed themselves philhellenes "friend of Greeks." – Don’t vituperate, though quite rightly, my romanticism ….. please …. ! ]

Best wishes


Rupert Neil Bumfrey said...

-What do you check my blog for?
The "welcome" on front page, about sums up my reasons for subscribing through RSS. I would recommend all to download an RSS Reader, makes following a variety of news sources simple.
-Do you prefer War/Sanctions/Talk with coup d'etat regime?
Always "Talk".
-Do you wonder what happened to the protest to election results?
Not at all, it is an evolutionary process, and evolution takes time!
-Why, if IRI is so notorious, aren't people afraid to chant slogans in buses and metros?
As a non-Iranian I am very impressed with the way the citizens of Iran have reacted to the flawed election process.
-Do you agree with me that the nuclear issue is red herring?
Yes, talk is the way to resolve the situation.
Look at AD taking advantage of UN speaking opportunity.
Hopefully POTUS with his Peace Prize, given for his vision of the way forward, will present a less truculent approach than has previously been the case, from the Leaders of Western civilisation!
But all of us "outsiders" should appreciate Iran's destiny will only be chosen by Iranian citizens.