Thursday, February 11, 2010

As MrZine celebrates the victory of the Iranian criminal regime

wrongly assuming that the regime change is the objective of the green movement, I wish to add a new video to his plethora of his "observations":

In this video; one soldier beats a young half naked man; women in the background of camera scream; another soldier points his gun at the behind-camera screaming women; the soldier starts punching the naked guy; and a by passing woman stops to protest to the brutality of the police!

I suspect the man was undressed to check for his green signs; as people wishing to enter the 50 million rally were inspected for carrying any such symbolism!

49 comments:

Pedestrian said...

naj, who is this person, Yoshie? I left her a comment - I know it's useless, just did for no reason. Is she Iranian?
I've been reading shit like this on lefty blogs all day.
clueless dimwits. They should join forces with Rush Limbaugh and call it a day. They'd be surprised how much they have in common with him as far as ignorance (and arrogance) goes.

Yoshie said...

It's clear that most people who voted for Mousavi, including most people who took part in post-election protests, had no interest whatsoever in regime change. Only some Iranians -- mainly in the West, especially those who put themselves forward as "Mousavi's spokespeople," calling for sanctions, rooting for violent direct action, etc. -- did, and that type of people have been basically rejected by Mousavi, as well as his voters, especially after what happened on Ashura.

The Western hopes for regime change therefore were largely futile to begin with, but Western leaders were prepared to use Green Wave images in Western propaganda -- while ignoring what Mousavi and his voters were actually thinking and saying -- so they could step up sanctions and other measures. 22 Bahman, however, makes it difficult for even Western leaders to ignore this fact: neither side of the political divide in Iran wants regime change, much less one helped by the West.

Struggles for reforms, however, will no doubt continue in Iran, as they should. The Iranians have a better chance of winning them if the West doesn't meddle.

Naj said...

Yoshie ... you have changed your blog interface and I couldn't make the association ... it's YOU ... my partner in fighting Bush-Co ... in stopping the second holocaust ... MrZine is my old friend ...

Yoshie ... what is happening now in Iran doesn't fit the model we were defending once ... things have escalated out of all reason. You know me; so you know I am not a Western regime changer, stone thrower, sanction wisher; you have a been a friend to this blog for too long to not know where I come from.

But, Khamenei has been taking one WRONG step after the other; the rhetoric coming out of Iran today is PURE fascism ... it is our moral imperative to oppose it ... to oppose fascism no matter where it happens!

You know; the delicate dance here is to stand clear of the fascists in Iran and those neo-con cheer leaders here! I feel if one (especially on the left bank of the history river) slightly tips in teh direction of the Ahmadinejadist fascists; the valve opens in favor of the neocons ... this is not an easy walk; and I feel all my old friends have left me in this alone ...

Yoshie said...

I completely agree with you on the deplorable fact that the whole election and post-election fiasco ended up empowering Khamenei, who should not be empowered, for Iran to become democratic. On the other hand, though, the post-Ashura rethinking among some principlists and reformists may, in a roundabout way, turn things around, though probably not in the short term.

In any case, I got a lot of other things posted to MRZine, too, like Iranian rapper Salome's latest song "Grown Green on This Land" and "Iranian Academics and Activists in Support of Mousavi's 17th Statement," which clearly show the actual Green points of view (to be contrasted with Western media images of them). The main thing for me to do in MRZine is to make sure that those who visit the site can see some of the the social facts on the ground in Iran that are seldom reported or highlighted in the Western media and then make up their own minds.

Publicola said...

A subjective, amateurish guess:

The movement for democracy is to be found in cities among the younger as well as more educated sections of the population. Thus the tenor of reporting in general.
In addition therefore it some figures and data:

The age median in Iran is 27 years (i.e. half of the population is younger than this figure); the age median of Germany is approx. 44 years.

Iran and. Italy have an identical degree of urbanisation degree: 68% live in cities respectively.

Literacy in Iran with 77% approaches that Turkey with approx. 87%.

The official election result of over 35% for the opposition bestows a higher degree of political legitimation to the opposition than each single large German popular party with a large and broad electorate is able to dispose of (i.e. definitely under 35%; more exactly: SPD [Socialdemocrats] - 23%; CDU/CSU [Christian-Democrats] - 33.8%) after the last election to the Bundestag/parliament, the election of the present government.

In other words, the violent suppression of the oppositional movement(s) is likely to be condemned to (mid- and longterm) failure,
at least from a demographic and statistical point of view.

Mark Pyruz said...

Naj, I interpret the video as follows:

The young man's clothes were marked by a paintgun hit, he removed his shirt in an attempt to evade, was captured and subjected to excessive force by a member of the IRIPF (NAJA).

Anonymous said...

About the video:
My guess is the guy was probably hit with a paintball gun and was trying remove some of his clothes to escape detection.
About the protests:
I think now is about time everyone turned off the foreign-funded media and faced reality. The vote count probably went down as reported, and people who still identify themselves as 'greens' don't have the numbers to make any changes through direct action, and faces stark prospects of expanding it's base. I think the first act of any serious movement that wants to advance civil liberties in Iran is to jettison the political leaders, rhetoric, symbolism, and above all the paranoid mindset of the greens.

masoud

Naj said...

Anonumous (Masoud):

"I think now is about time everyone turned off the foreign-funded media and faced reality. The vote count probably went down as reported, and people who still identify themselves as 'greens' don't have the numbers to make any changes through direct action, and faces stark prospects of expanding it's base.

Foreign-funded media?!?! So you think all these past 8 months have been about foreign funded media?!?! NONSENSE! The paranoia seems to be yours and that of yoru "enemy" delusional supreme leader!!

Green don't have the numbers?! And you judge it based on the "embedded foreign media reports"? or on IRNa and Farce news? Do you have any sense of logic to recognize that people in Iran WERE NOT GIVEN THE FREEDOM to attend the rally yesterday? Did you not hear that people were prevented from entering the square if they carried green symbolism? Does it not occur to you that MANY of those 50 million bulshitted number were in fact Greens ...

Numbers to make direct change? Yes they do have numbers to make direct change; but they don't have guns and batons, nor do they have the will and teh savagery to treat the opponent as animals! This is where the difference comes. That the greens prefer to NOT TURN ATROCIOUS and get their hands dirty with murder, unlike that Ahmadinejad!

Yoshie:
you are suggesting that the post election empowered SL! I think you are wrong! The post election empowered IRGC. The SL is just a puppet of the military/fruit industrial/import complex of IRan.

Ahmadinejad is the worst DISASTER that has ever happened to Iran; while being the best gift to Israel!
The man lies about EVERYTHING. Why do you believe his election?!

The social facts in Iran are now tainted by FASCISM. We cannot ignore it; ignore the innocent blood that is shed; and act as Ahmadinejad's propaganda proxies/apologists!

Publicola:
Are you sure about the literacy rate in IRan? A few years back I saw a much higher number. can you please tell me where the 77% number's reported?

Publicola said...

Dear Naj,

here the link:
https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/ir.html

I must admit that when researching on this posting I have not tried to look for more than this one source in order to compare and thus check on the latest, current available figures (apologies)

Best wishes

Publicola

Anonymous said...

"Do you have any sense of logic to recognize that people in Iran WERE NOT GIVEN THE FREEDOM to attend the rally yesterday?"

Not given the freedom by whom? A bunch of imported afghans? The lebanese hezbollah? What is the convenient excuse of the day? Why don't the greens have the guns? Rafsanjani, khatami, mousavi, karoubi, rezei and co aren't lightweights. They founded and for twenty five years ran all the organs of the state that are now apparently loyal to that geda-looking president and that much hated Akhund. How did this happen? How can conscript armies be used so effectively to supress, what is the claim these days? 70,80% of the population? Where have eight months of self delusion landed this movement? Their Ashura protests drew a crowd at least 100 larger than themselves, not support Ahmadinejad or denounce Mousavi, but to denounce the GREENS THMESELVES. The ratios today seem even more skewed. More of the same will only give human rigths/civil liberties a bad name.
If the green's don't adjust in a big way, they may as well start staring at the moon to see if they can't make out Mousavi's likeness or hear Ahmadinejad's Russia bound jet taking off, while they await Makhmalbaf's next top secret report about smuggled Gold Bullion and Khameini's horse collection.

masoud

Publicola said...

Postscriptum:
figures / legitimation:

the present German government is a coalition of CDU/CSU [Christian-Democrats] plus FDP [Liberal Democrats]; the 2009 voter turnout of CDU/CSU was 33,8%, that of the FDP was 14,6%, in total 48,4%.

Taking account of the pre-election massive exclusion of candidates and
of the obviously not unfounded allegations of vote rigging in Iran, in addition to a comparison with former elections like President Khatami's there seems to be a very solid quantitative basis for the
"green" movement, and that means for different opposition parties and for different oppositional candidates - and, last but not least - a fully-fledged democratic system Iranian-style, worthy of that name.

Naj said...

Masoud,

do you have a blog?

I have difficulty understanding what you are saying; you just sound cynical without a cause :)

Publicola said...

One last heckling:

A subjective view on some structural obstacles to any democratic movement in Iran, if and in case of being opposed by a hardline government/regime. A comparison with a European country might be helpful:

IRAN
• Iranian total population: around 74.000.000 inhabitants
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iran
• The regular armed forces have an estimated 820,000 personnel (1,1 % of total population)
• Law enforcement in Iran has 60,000 police personnel serving under the Ministry of Interior and Justice, including border patrol personnel (0,08% of total population)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Law_enforcement_in_Iran#Secret_police_organizations
• The Army of the Guardians of the Islamic Revolution, or Revolutionary Guards, has an estimated 125,000 personnel (0,17% of total population)
• The Basij is a paramilitary volunteer force controlled by the Islamic Revolutionary Guards. Its membership is a matter of controversy. Iranian sources claim a membership of 12.6 million, including women, of which perhaps 3 million are combat capable (17% of total population)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_Republic_of_Iran%27s_military

GERMANY
• Inhabitants: ca. 82,000,000
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/German
• police force total: ca. 247.000 – 0,30 % (percentage of population total)
http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polizei_%28Deutschland%29#Personal
• armed forces total (i.e. active plus reserve personnel): ca. 610.000 – 0,74 % (percentage of population total)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bundeswehr

COMPARISON GERMANY/IRAN
There is no decisive difference (expressed in percentage-proportion to population total) between Germany and Iran when the calculation is restricted to the regular police and army forces.

Differences: the number of purely functional police forces is considerably lower than the German figure. This difference is more than compensated, when adding the figures of the IRGC- plus Basiji-forces – law enforcement forces that don’t act on a purely functional basis, but in addition on ideological [fanatical] grounds.

Thus differences emerge clearly when additionally taking into account the Iranian (ideologized) parapolice/paramilitary forces (17,2%).

[Independently of the voting behaviour and political outlook of the members of these forces they still are subjected to the principle of “command and obedience” when in service.]

One difficult task of the “green” movement to cope with.

masoud shirazi said...

funny you should ask. I just created my first one about a minute ago. Not sure if i'm going to do anything with it though.

coolhandsoud.blogspot.com

Yoshie said...

Naj says: "you are suggesting that the post election empowered SL! I think you are wrong! The post election empowered IRGC. The SL is just a puppet of the military/fruit industrial/import complex of IRan."

So, the empowerment of Khamenei and the empowerment of the IRGC go hand in hand, don't they? Anyhow, this is another reason why we should strategically redouble efforts to oppose sanctions, since the sanctions have and will empower the IRGC/Khamenei, at the expense of the type of people you are backing.

As for Ahmadinejad, his term will end in a little over three years. So, those Iranians who think that a new direction is desperately needed in Iran should start preparing for the next elections NOW,* while seeking to take control over voting away from the Interior Ministry (which is the main reason why questions over the last elections arose) and to turn it over to an independent commission representing all factions in Iran (as Mousavi appears to demand).

* IMHO, the anti-Ahmadinejad camp started their campaign too late in the last elections.

Naj said...

Yoshie; the fallacy of yoru argument is in assuming that the election will have been WON if the Anti-ahmadinejad camp was better-prepared!

This is not so!

You are ignoring the fact that Ahmadinejad's initial election was also wrapped in controversy: the threat of an IRGC coup is not something that started this June; it was there in 2005 as well!

No IRGC and Khamenei are not one entity, and no they do not go hand in hand.

If you have paid attention to Ahmadinejad, he has been doing plenty to undermine the SL as well! the SL is a puppet to the IRGC.

As for economic sanctions: yes they will hurt Iran; but those who are ignoring the violation of human rights in Iran, those who are assuming Ahmadinejad is good for Iran, assuming that he was indeed elected by popular vote are hurting Iran even more!

If you look at the economic havoc Ahmadinejad has wreaked, at the cultural and academic disaster he has created, at the militarization of the factories, of bankruptcy of farmers and local producers, then you would realize that Ahmadinejad is FAR less popular amongst the worker class than he is amongst the elite!

Again, if you pay attention to what is happening in Iran, you will notice that Karoubi has been PREPARING for the past 4 years to circumvent ANOTHEr fraudulent election (as he was convinced this was the case last time).

I don't understand why you are assuming things in Iran are run with logic under this freak, ahmadinejad? Have you NOT listened to him lie through his teeth, that you now believe him? I mean you do speak Persian for god's sake, no?

Have you not noticed that the arrests of the opposition began BEFORE the vote was even announced?

Sanctions hurting Iran ... well Iran has been under sanctions for the past 30 years. Perhaps if people such as those you speak to began boycotting the IRI, maybe if Palestinains stood up and renounced the support of a country that treats its own citizens worse than Israelis treat palestinians, then the IRI will have taken notice!

As long as you are their proxy-soldier, they will act in the inhumane beastly manner that they do ...

Not all means justify ends ...

Yoshie said...

In my view, Ahmadinejad doesn't have the kind of power that you appear to assume he does. He doesn't get any support from reformists, and a lot of principlists appear to be opposed to him (especially very powerful ones like the Larijani brothers). In fact, some principlists have made an explicit overture to the Mousavi camp, to marginalize Ahmadinejad. It seems to me that is one of the few promising things for the Mousavi camp in the short term. Why shouldn't Mousavi accept that overture? Is there any better idea to change the direction of Iran?

And if not better preparation for victory in the elections next time, what is the strategy to turn things around? What would actually work in your opinion? You know I respect your view, since I know you are firmly opposed to adventurism and violence (which ultra leftists and rightists have been stupidly promoting!).

Naj said...

Thanks Yoshie; and I value yours.

Ahmadinejad doesn't have power; but he has ambitions for it. The problem with Ahmadinejad is his pathological condition: he suffers grandiosity complex; and he is also a bit schizophrenic!

I have a friend who has served under Ahmadinejad, during the war; in the frontlines. He considered Ahmadinejad a total crazy; one to want to push the envelop only for the sake of having pushed the envelope!

Ahmadinejad likes spotlight, likes controversy, like to think he is the saviour of the poor and the disenfranchised.

I believe he himself knows how thin an egg shell he is standing on; and this is why he is using his Pimp mashayee to get him customers from the "hediye-tehrani-loving'sadaf-swimming-pool-attending/dual-citizen-Iranian-visitor" crowd.

If you pay attention, Ahmdinejad is enthralled by the desire to be loved and respected by the western media. I have not seen any president or public figure in IRan after revolution to enjoy cameras as much as he does!

Things in IRan are not simple. Not dissimilar to Italy, Iran has been always ruled by different clans of varying, shifting alliances. Reza shah had the idea to unite the country out of tribalism, but he did not succeed: cronyism is a very tangible fact in Iranian power spheres.

In the Iranian equation, it is simplistic to assume there are two poles who oppose eachotehr; to assume a khamenei versus Hashemi; Ahmadinejad versus Mousavi, Larijani versus Khomeini offsprings relations is reductionist. These people are clans! Ahmadinejad's clan doesn't have the (religious) blue blood of Larijanis; or the revolutionary blue blood of Mousavi, Karoubi, Hashemi or Khamenei; these four in so many ways are the foundations of the IRI. Ahmadinejad feels himself excluded from this elite class, and this is why he is trying to build his bases on the "people"; his problem is that he is represented by the wrong crowd: by teh most radical and yet most hypocritical of fundamentalists. Ahmadinejad is backed by his IRGC buddies for now because he is facilitating their arms and orange dealings, because he is freeing oil revenues, and is promising them free market economy! But he is dispensible too!

In Iran, like many other parts of the world CAPITAL speaks the first word! Do not be mistaken by the religious rhetoric; the fanatic foot soldiers are pawns.

So you would ask: what is the danger of Ahmadinejad?

Naj said...

The danger of Ahmadinejad is in the fact that his rootlessness; his vulnerability together with is ambitions; make him to hang on to these pawns for power! Too many of them are being hired to perform the simple task of protecting the president! Look at what they did to Karoubi and Khatami and Mosavi's wife yesterday!

And the danger is in that one day, Ahmadinejad will no longer be able to control these ex-criminals that he has "proudly re-integrated into society".
When you give people power to act as security forces, to arrest, to beat and to intimidate then you yourself become a hostage to them! IF Ahmadinejad fails to satisfy the whims of these goons, then he and the entire nation will collapse.

To simplify what I said: Ahmadinejad's problem is his desire for popularity and the repeated rejection he is getting from all sides he is trying to satisfy; THUS he is relying on the unreliable!

So what is the solution and what will happen?

This game will go on; for a long time. Iran will not be sanctioned; and the Western powers will not really give a damn about human rights violation in Iran! They will be as ineffective in doing anything about HR abuse in Iran as they have been in the case of China and Russia--after which Iran is modeling itself.

BUT, if people whose love and admiration Ahmadinejad has been begging (the underdogs, the leftists, the palestinians, the south Americans) stand up and hold him accountable to his lies; if they stop welcoming him, then he WILL modify his behavior ...

Truth is, Iran is caught in a very tight corner. The "militancy" that some greens shout is just as unpopular as is the militancy of Basij. People have the right to self defense; and a country as volatile as Iran needs security. But what Iran needs to fix, and fix immediately is not the presidency, but first the judiciary; next the legislator and at last the presidency.

Because all these are under direct SL control, the best option would have been if he performed his "constitutional duty" and without taking sides, meddled and corrected the pre-election irregularities, and the post-election mess. But he has failed; repeatedly failed. and he, the SL has painted himself and the nation in a corner that we cannot get out of unless with a miracle or a referendum.

I fear if it is not a referendum, the miracle will be deadly ...

All I can do presently is to debunk Ahmadinejadist's propaganda (because they act as if they are Gobbele's untalented pupils) ... Ahmadinejad is a showman for the world, not unlike the Shah was. Let's not buy ticket to his farce ... perhapse this will force him to change his act.

Naj said...

For posterity:
Angry Arab: we suggest you shut the hell up and roll in your colonial self pity!

Parvati said...

Great posts Naj - very profound. In a way I'm not sorry the rahrah-hype fizzled/backfired, in fact I'd been worried sick over the last week or so as I feared a major head-on confrontation at this stage would probably end in a bloodbath: how could a power-faction (or alliance thereof) that had managed to get its paws on a major slice of wealth+weapons be expected to bow out throwing roses - unless/until fully undermined and outmanoeuvred? So this reality-check with relative strategic rethink may well be a blessing in disguise.
......

Taking a break from the politics, for a moment of solace here's something you may like - it's a traditional song from Italy's "deep south":
Tarantella del Gargano

Parvati said...

FWIW - weird historical coincidences dept.: am I the first person to have noticed that the fathers of Mussolini and Ahmadinejad were both blacksmiths?

More seriously:
Hardliners Continue Efforts to Create Totalitarian Security State

Yoshie said...

Naj, about Angry Arab on Iran, you should know that he is speaking to different audiences in different ways: to his English-speaking, primarily Western audience, he tends to focus on criticizing the Western media portrayal about Iran: to his Arabic-speaking, primarily Arab audience, he tends to focus on criticizing Arab illusions about Ahmadinejad, Iran, etc. For an example of the latter, see this one: http://www.dctcrs.org/s7036.htm.

Yoshie said...

Why not write in such a way that Ahmadinejad's base in Iran can take a critical look at his failure to deliver on his own promises (regarding economic justice and so on) and present suggestions for better ways than his to fulfill them? Then, that base might rebel against Ahmadinejad, and he might be compelled to "modify his behavior."

Publicola said...

POSTSCRIPTUM II:

Dear Naj,

Your question as to the current correctness of some figures made me look for comparable statistical data. Here an update with figures from other sources plus some further data:


IRAN – population increase:
between 1979 (36 Mio. inhabitants) and 2003 (ca. 72 Mio.) Iran’s population doubled.
http://www1.bpb.de/themen/80FM5X,3,0,Die_Islamische_Republik_Iran.html


IRAN - literacy rate:
total population above 80% [!!!] - male: 86% - female: 73.0%
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_Iran#Literacy

[compared to TURKEY - literacy rate: an overall average of 87.4% - 95.3% for men - 79.6% for women http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_Turkey ]


IRAN - university education male/female ratio:
Women make up more than 50 percent of Iranian university students with some fields in science and engineering having more than 70 percent of their alumni comprising of women [!!!]
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Education_in_Iran#Women_in_education





UNAVOIDABLE QUESTION:

With a view to these figures (in addition to the figures of urbanization and youths/adults/old age ratio, quoted some comments above here) how will Iranian society cope with the flagrant, fundamental contradiction of a government applying medieval ideologies, methods and principles of governance ?

Let’s hope with a decrease, not an increase, of governmental violence.

But is this hope justified ?



All the best

Yours

Publicola
[formerly “German”]

Naj said...

Yoshi;

You write:
Why not write in such a way that Ahmadinejad's base in Iran can take a critical look at his failure to deliver on his own promises (regarding economic justice and so on) and present suggestions for better ways than his to fulfill them?

Brother, what do you think these journalists who are in jail have been doing?
What do you think Mousavi and KAroubi have been doing?
You think Mousavi and Karoubi have been asking for sanctions and for neoconservatives to come change the regime for IRan?!

Why NOT?
Exactly, that is the question that Ahmadinejad has to answer:

Why is he firing any of his cabinet nad staff wo is slightly critical of him?

Why is the national media in Iran not giving trbune to people who are critical of the way government operates?

Why do we have ECONOMISTS jailed?

What else do you think people have been writing about?! and WHY do you assume that Ahmadinejad's bases do not SUFFER his actions: look at farmers, and workers ... working unionists are put in jail; farmers are driven to bankruptcy ...

You think in Iran, you can easily go from village to village and hand out oil cash and buy people's attentions? Well you can do that only if you have the oil money, which Ahmadinejad has and if you are not harassed and beaten and arrested and killed by the security forces!

You really are making me think you have been asleep these past year!

Or am I misunderstanding you?

====
As for Angry Arab: so what he is a hypocrite? I thought so myself!

Yoshie Furuhashi said...

Naj, the point of politics is to win more and more people over to your cause, not to pick a fight with people who sympathize with you though without agreeing with you 100%, like Angry Arab. Save your ammunitions for rightists in Iran and the US. Moreover, emphasizing different points to different audiences is not hypocrisy but educating people about what they don't know: Arabs know about the US media bias against Muslims, so they don't need to have Angry Arab deconstruct it, but they may not know about the shortcomings of the Iranian government about which Angry Arab can educate them; English-speaking Westerners know about the shortcomings of the Iranian government, which are constantly highlighted by the Western media, but they may not be aware of how the Western media serve Western powers' policy in their Iran coverage, which is where Angry Arab comes in.

Yoshie said...

Naj, the point of politics is to win more and more people over to your cause, not to pick a fight with people who sympathize with you though without agreeing with you 100%, like Angry Arab. Save your ammunitions for rightists in Iran and the US. Moreover, emphasizing different points to different audiences is not hypocrisy but educating people about what they don't know: Arabs know about the US media bias against Muslims, so they don't need to have Angry Arab deconstruct it, but they may not know about the shortcomings of the Iranian government about which Angry Arab can educate them; English-speaking Westerners know about the shortcomings of the Iranian government, which are constantly highlighted by the Western media, but they may not be aware of how the Western media serve Western powers' policy in their Iran coverage, which is where Angry Arab comes in.

Naj said...

Yoshie:
but they may not know about the shortcomings of the Iranian government about which Angry Arab can educate them;

So AA is doing that in Arabic? Because all I see in his English coverage is snotty comments belittling the Greens!

But aside from AA; I like you to address issues I raised with yourself.

You commented about why people don't write and educate others about the perils of Ahmadinejad; and I referred to the lack of freedom of press in Iran; which I see you keep evading!

I like you to suggest how in a dictatorship that brutalizes journalists and teachers one can "express" politics. I am very curious about your opinion!

Yoshie said...

Audience and Style:
A lot of criticism of Ahmadinejad and his government has been and is still being published, despite censorship and repression (that is so because some of his critics are very powerful themselves), but it's almost always written by people who are just preaching to their choir. Critics have to write in such a way that people who are currently supporting Ahmadinejad can hear them out and change their minds. One of the reasons why 22 Bahman was a bust was that the Green Wave had been living in its own bubble, listening and talking to only Greens and their sympathizers, as some of the Green Wave participants are now saying.

Alternative, Not Just Criticism:
Most critics just focus on what they find wrong with the status quo, without telling their audience what their own alternatives are and how they can make things better than they are now. People don't usually switch their allegiance until they find a better program even if they agree with criticism of the old program. This is so in any country, under whatever conditions.

Naj said...

More fallacies:

One of the reasons why 22 Bahman was a bust
What was a "bust" about 22 Bahman? The vides I am showing here, the picturs of beating and teh stories of teh eye witnesses suggest it was NOT a bust; that it was a heavily guarded and security infested event taht people's clustering was prevented at any cost.

Do you consider it normal that the 2-president and teh 2-term parliamet speaker be beaten and their car smashed as they were on tehir way to attending the ceremony?

===
Another fallacy:
Critics have to write in such a way that people who are currently supporting Ahmadinejad can hear them out and change their minds.

can you please write in such a manner; since you have all the freedom of speech to do so. And then I would like to learn from it! Who do you think is listening to Ahmadinejad? Did you pay attention to people picnicing in teh lawn when he was tearing his disgusting lungs out?

Also, have you read criticisms of Ahmadinejad? Have you noticed peopel who have been ignoring this green movement completely and writing about his disaterous economic policies, environmental policies, education policies?!

I like you to fist tell me who you think the base of Ahmadinejad is: Lebanon Hizbollah?
And since you seem to be more in touch with teh ahmadinejadist supporters, I challenge YOU to write in a manner that you think will change their minds and alert them to not only violations of human rights in IRan, but also pushing the country down a hole. I will be the first to use your example and follow!

Yoshie said...

About Angry Arab on Iran:
Yes, he's been very critical of Ahmadinejad and Iran in Arabic, especially regarding how Ahmadinejad's comments on the Holocaust create problems for the Palestinian cause. (This is a point that he makes in English, too, in passing -- he just doesn't dwell on it in his blog, since we all know that already!)

About Censorship:
It depends on how far you want to take your criticism. If you limit your criticism within the boundaries of the comfort zone of the Larijani brothers, Mohsen Rezai, Ali Motahari, etc., there will always be venues for that, since Ahmadinejad can't do anything to them. If you want to go further, well, there obviously are risks, of which you are all too aware, but even then criticisms can still circulate through person-to-person networks and sometimes eventually help bring down governments even under conditions more repressive than in today's Iran, as has happened in the history of Iran itself, the old socialist countries, and so on. In much of today's Third World, things that happen to radical dissenters in Iran happen to radical dissenters elsewhere, too, but in some countries some leftists have made some progress. To take one example, Egyptian trade unionists. Some Egyptian trade unionists succeeded in building their own union, independent of corporatist trade unions subordinated to the government (like the labor house in Iran). Iran's leftists probably should listen to them and others like them, instead of listening to fools like Mohsen Sazegara and Mohsen Makhmalbaf who really don't know what they are talking about and give dangerous advice without taking risks themselves.

Naj said...

Well we seem to have found one thing in common now:

instead of listening to fools like Mohsen Sazegara and Mohsen Makhmalbaf

Again, you are mistaken if you think that many of dissidents really give a damn about Sazegara and Makhmalbaf. Some teenagers, maybe! But, teh criticism coming from Karoubi, from Mousavi, from Khatami, from Hashemi is not "radical" at all. It is THAT which they do not allow either.

And then speaking of Motahari and Larijani brothers: have you per chance paid attention to the "exclusionist" and hypocritica approaches of these individuals. These people are clearly against Ahmadinejad, but they are also violent-promoters when it comes to defending the supreme leader (which again is just a facad to the behind the scene power structures.)

Up to 8 months ago, someone like Alireza Hashemi and Khatami and Khomeini kids seemed "untouchable" too. It is a matter of time that Ahmadinejad's militarist string holders will get rid of the likes of Larijani and Motahari!

Their criticism is not out of concern for Iranians, they are fearing the same existentialist angst that Hashemi (and I would argue, Khamenei himself) is.

Of course, you seem to favor people whose tool for politics is dubious hypocrisy, like AA, and Rezayee and Larijani.

At this point, this is not acceptable in Iran!

Larijani #1 has no business allowing the legislator be manipulated by Ahmadinejadists.

Larijani #2 has no business sending people to gallows on bogus charges!

Rezayee is a fool!

Remember, those who are in jail, are NOT radical leftists. They are "reformists", people who have been shielding the regime against the radicalists to date. It is their imprisonment that has made room for fools like Sazegara and Makhmalbaf. You keep overlooking this. Why all this wilfull ignorance?

Naj said...

correction:

someone like "Alirze Beheshti" and Khatami ...

Yoshie said...

Naj: "they [the Larijani brothers, etc.] are also violent-promoters when it comes to defending the supreme leader (which again is just a facad to the behind the scene power structures.)"

They sure are, but a question must be clarified first of all. Is the objective of the Green Wave to weaken the Ahmadinejad faction or to attack Khamenei and the framework of the Islamic Republic? What strategy and tactics make sense, whether overtures from "concerned principlists" can be in any way useful, etc. really depends on the answer to this question. Irresponsible agitators in exile like Sazegara and Makhmalbaf are telling people in Iran to do things that would be only appropriate if the Green Wave were prepared to go the whole hog, becoming revolutionary. But it seems to me that most people in the Green Wave still think like Mousavi, Khatami, and Karoubi, emphasizing the enforcements of the constitutional rights that the Iranian people already have on paper but are being violated by the government. If that is so, what Farideh Farhi among others has been suggesting makes sense. If that is not so, and a majority of the Green Wave is already thinking that "At this point, this is not acceptable in Iran!" then it's time to find other leaders than Mousavi, et al, since they do not have the ability and willingness to create and lead a movement to go beyond the line of thinking summed up by Farhi.

Naj said...

Ok so I found a break moment to read Farhi's article; and now I cannot understand what you mean by:

among others has been suggesting makes sense. If that is not so, and a majority of the Green Wave is already thinking that "At this point, this is not acceptable in Iran!" then it's time to find other leaders than Mousavi, et al, since they do not have the ability and willingness to create and lead a movement to go beyond the line of thinking summed up by Farhi.

As I indicated to you before, Mousavi and Karoubi have been giving Khamehni yards and yards of space to do what is RIGHT. If Khamenei INSISTS on the erroneous course of action he has been following then it is "He" who is pushing the movement beyond it's initial demands.

the radicalization began ONLY after Khamenei's order to "kill who ever says no" came.

You keep focusing and repeating "why the greens don't follow Motahari and conservative's suggestions."

Well dear, they cannot even do THAT!

I really think you just speak theoretically, without any grasp of what the situation is in Iran. I think in order for us to better understand eachother, it will be helpful if you tell me how exactly you view the situation in Iran. Forget about whatever the "sazegaras or Makhmalbaf's" are writing about. I am curious about your understanding of the situation.

Naj said...

Yoshie;
Have you seen this?

Yoshie Furuhashi said...

We'll see if Greens will respond to this call in significant numbers on 6-22 March 2010. The union and the Greens are more likely to win more supporters, though, if their action is pegged to a demand that addresses urgent economic concerns of many workers, as opposed to a protest on behalf of one prisoner, important as the latter is from a moral point of view. That is because it is very difficult to move people on the question of morality alone.

Naj said...

Now isn't this ridiculous, for a judiciary?!

Yoshie Furuhashi said...

BTW, is announcing the action so ahead of time so publicly (as opposed to circulating info in secret, person to person, by word of mouth) a really great idea? In any country, when the police get ahold of announcements like this, they plan and prepare. The security forces were extremely well prepared for 22 Bahman in Iran, and that is because they knew the Green plan way ahead of time.

Naj said...

Yoshie,

now this is interesting:
is announcing the action so ahead of time so publicly (as opposed to circulating info in secret, person to person, by word of mouth) a really great idea?

Your question is interesting because a few hours go you considered 22 Bahman a "bust", only because you didn't see a clear "green" presence--oblivious that the greens had "trojaned" the even, but finding themselves surrounded with goons, and thus having chosen to stay silent to safe themselves!!

Iran is a country of 70 million; of this 70 million close to 20 live in Tehran and the suburbs, it is they who are the addressee of this call to action!

In a country when ALL MEANS of communication are controlled; when I cannot make a fone call to my father without being tapped, when g-chatting leads to arrest of my lawyer friend, where peopel who are BEATEN in public and arrested in public and bruesed in public bear the burden of proof that they have been beaten, in SUCH a country, you cannot act in a "sneaky" way! This is not a game Yoshie. Have you ever been to Iran? I always thought you are Iranian, I think I am mistaken?

So if you have lived in Iran, you would know that making such announcements is about injecting green blood into the veins of hope. Protest in Iran needs to become GENERAL for this pest that plagues Iran to be removed or contained. If you think clandestine operation is what Iranian movement needs, you have not been paying attention to what has been happening in the past ten years!

Do not compare what you call "left" movement in Iran to the "left" movement in Seattle!

And to answer your question: isn't it better to focus on worker wages than a union leader's imprisonment?! AGAIN: the unionist IS in prison BECAUSE he was defending worker's wages. Osanloo didn't go to prison because he wanted to topple Ahmadinejad or Khamenei.

I am beginning to see why my friends are so angry with you! Your positions are somewhat delusional! Forgive me for saying that, but you really speak too theoretically to be relevant to what is happening in Iran.

In some ways, you are the mirror image of people like Sazegara and Makhmalbaf and may of those leftist xpat intellectuals ... you people all seem to enjoy your theories too much!

Yoshie Furuhashi said...

It's Greens themselves, though, who are saying that 22 Bahman was a bust in part because the widely announced Trojan idea was a poor idea: e.g., "Before the demonstration, we screamed, we shouted: this is such a stupid idea [gathering at Azadi]. We kept arguing that we could not 'capture' Azadi Square, and this will only help the enemy. No one listened"; "One common focal point for self-criticism was the so-called Trojan horse plan for last Thursday that was widely disseminated on the Internet." This type of self-criticism is essential to any movement.

To organize in countries like Iran, outside the West, requires a higher level of organization than here. I of course realize that a great majority of Greens are not leftists in the traditional sense, but it still makes sense for them to learn from leftists who have experience in organizing under similarly difficult conditions, which is why I mentioned the Egyptian example earlier. In any case, I'm saying what I'm saying as suggestions only, in a conversation between you and me; it's Greens and unionists in Iran themselves who will decide.

Naj said...

what I'm saying as suggestions only, in a conversation between you and me; it's Greens and unionists in Iran themselves who will decide.

Completely agree.

Truth is, this movement has many facets; many voices. This is a great exercise for Iranians to learn to listen to the multitude of voices.

Presently, the left is divided and so is the right. Within each faction there is dialogue and disagreement.

The situation will not remain as this; both parties will eventually come to a middle; marginalizing the radicals. the ONLY concerning element now is these paramilitaries who are given power--they can be very susceptible to all sorts of manipulation.

There is one cause we can ALL agree on: anti-fascism. No?

Yoshie Furuhashi said...

You bet! All political prisoners must be released NOW!

Parvati said...

"The situation will not remain as this; both parties will eventually come to a middle; marginalizing the radicals."

Same enduringly commmonsensical principle as Italy's "historic compromise" - btw Aldo Moro was killed to prevent it, some say with the connivance of both "extremes".
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Historic_Compromise

Yoshie said...

What was reported by Tehran Bureau to be the Vahed bus drivers' call for action has turned out to be a forgery, and Tehran Bureau has issued a correction: "It now appears that the poster was not authentic and that the union's leadership had not issued the statement, whose provenance remains unclear. . . . [T]he union requested that the falsity of the statement be made public and that henceforth no reference would be made to it."

It seems to me that there are at least some individuals on the ground in Iran who are actually engaged in purposefully spreading false information like this forged poster, sowing confusing in the Green Wave and the rest of society -- individuals who are probably connected with foreign powers and/or the regime-change wing of exiles and who want to provoke the government into repressing the Green Wave and other social activists even more than before. While no one should become paranoid, it is a good idea for people, especially the Greens, to be vigilant about this problem.

Naj said...

Yoshie, don't worry. The Greens on the ground in Iran are quite careful!

this "foreign element" sounds a bit dayee-jan napoleonish ... it is not foreign elements who are putting people in JAIL for NO CRIME. It is not foreign elements who have delayed the tabling of the budget, plunging the country into economic chaos. It is not the foreign elements who attack Karoubi and Khatami with batons, smashing their car and preventng them from attending the rally of a revolution THEY have founded!

I suggest "YOU" be vigilant about what cause you champion!

Naj said...

Yoshie:
This particularly addresses your concerns/comments

Naj said...

and this one by Hamid Dabashi

Now you cannot accuse "Dabashi" of being a pro-imperialist, capitalist, "foreign element"; can you?!