Iranian protesters keeping with revolutionary tradition

  • mwolverine

    Posts: 5810

    Jan 02, 2018 2:10 AM GMT
    Iranian protestors keeping with revolutionary tradition,7340,L-5064606,00.html

    Analysis: Iran is a much more open country than [people] think, and people there are used to protests; only this time, unlike in 2009, the slogans they are chanting—‘Death to Khamenei,’ ‘Death to Hezbollah,’ ‘We don’t want an Islamic republic’—are no longer within the Iranian state’s norms.

    The Iranians were filled with hope ahead of the implementation of the nuclear agreement. Their economy and society were on the verge of collapse, thanks to cheap oil prices and outrageous economic management. The agreement was supposed to help Iran join the world, open up its economy and lead to a celebration of growth. All that didn’t happen.

    The Obama administration said from the very first moment that it wasn’t exempting Iran from its duty to distance itself from the terror networks and from the war in Syria. Some people mocked the administration, saying it would be impossible to stop the investors from flocking to the country. It turned out they were actually afraid of Iran, both because of its involvement in militant activities and because of the destructive governmental involvement in the economy.

    The disappointment over the worsening economic situation is the background for the events that have been taking place in Iran in the past few days, but that’s a short-term look.

    Iran is a country that has experienced a revolution in our generation. A revolution isn’t a normal governmental change. It’s not a quiet overthrow of a regime (like what happened in Eastern Europe, for example). A revolution isn’t a military putsch either. A revolution is a rare historic event, bloody and filled with changes, in which the entire society undergoes a dramatic transformation. Those who are at the top sink down, and those who are at the bottom sometimes find themselves in power.

    The Iranian revolution took place in 1979, and blood was shed for years until it generated an Islamic theocracy with limited dimensions of an elected government. The death toll is incalculable. An Iranian friend once told me, “Anyone who has seen a revolution in his life will never want to see one again.”

    The Islamic Republic is a revolutionary entity. Every Friday, its loyalists go to mosques and chant the traditional chants against the shah, Iran’s last king. “Death to America” and “death to Israel” are a revolutionary folklore in Iran.

    In this radical world, exporting the revolution is a top duty: Just like it was an obligation for the communists in Moscow, it’s an obligation for the mullah regime in Tehran. That’s how the Iranians reached Iraq and Syria, and made it all the way to the shores of the Mediterranean Sea in Lebanon through Hezbollah.

    People there are used to protests. They know their parents went out to protest and toppled the corrupt shah and his horrible secret police, SAVAK. They are going out now, continuing the revolutionary tradition. Only this time, unlike in 2009, the protestors are going beyond the slogans that are part of the norms of the Iranian state: They are chanting, “Death to Khamenei,” “Death to Hezbollah,” “We don’t want an Islamic republic.” They are shouting from the University of Tehran, “No to the conservatives, no to the reformists, the game is over.”

    They are completely undermining the entire Iranian political discourse, which sprawls from President Hassan Rouhani to former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. It’s a discourse of religious clerics and their assistants, where there are different shades and a certain flexibility. Seculars, liberals, communists and others can’t take part in this discourse.

    The slogan which should particularly serve as a wake-up call to the regime is “The nation sacrificed in the army, the army will sacrifice for the nation.” This slogan is taken from the revolution protests in 1979, and its purpose is to say to the soldiers: Rise up against the regime. At the time, the Iranian army refused to crush the uprising—and the shah was toppled.

    The Islamic Republic survived all those who predicted it would collapse not because it is a withered, frozen body, but because there are flexibilities in the Iranian system, and because the public—having no other choice—has accepted that things can be said “through the system.” In other words, one can be a liberal or a patriot, but must use religious arguments.

    The slogans chanted in the protests of the past few days demonstrate that these conventions have been shattered. The regime is still capable of crushing the protests relatively easily, and the numbers seem smaller than the mass protests of 2009, and it doesn’t look like the majority of the Iranian public is joining the protest. But a revolutionary environment could change very fast, and when the Iranians take to the streets they don’t usually go home quickly.

  • mwolverine

    Posts: 5810

    Jan 02, 2018 2:49 AM GMT
    CNN Reported
    -- [Iranian President] Rouhani has acknowledged that Iranians have the right to protest legally but urged national unity Monday as "the first and most important step at this stage."

    -- A significant Internet outage was reported across Iran on Monday afternoon, but some users said later it was working again.

    Then why have a dozen or more been shot and hundreds arrested?!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jan 02, 2018 6:47 AM GMT
    mwolverine said
    CNN Reported
    -- [Iranian President] Rouhani has acknowledged that Iranians have the right to protest legally but urged national unity Monday as "the first and most important step at this stage."

    Then why have a dozen or more been shot and hundreds arrested?!

    Because they protested, of course. If they keep protesting, hundreds more will die and thousands will be jailed. They don't know that one can't stage a revolution in a military dictatorship if you can't take out the leaders. Unless some insider can get a bomb next to the great leader and blow him up, there will be no change in government.
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 5810

    Jan 04, 2018 5:18 AM GMT
    Yup, that was easy....

    Iran's Revolutionary Guards claim protests over

    The head of Iran's Revolutionary Guards said Wednesday that a string of anti-government protests were over after six days of unrest.

    The protests began last Thursday over Iran's stagnant economy and the rising cost of living but quickly have developed into a broader outcry against the government.

    They have become the most powerful challenge to the Iranian government's authority since mass demonstrations in 2009.

    The numbers turning out for rallies have dwindled in recent days, according to Los Angeles Times Tehran correspondent Ramin Mostaghim, but the protests continued Tuesday night in at least 10 cities.

    Authorities have detained at least 450 people, and 21 others have been killed in the unrest.

    Mojtaba, a 33-year-old Iranian who gave only his first name, told CNN that a lot of young people wanted the same lifestyles they see others having in wealthier parts of Iran as well as abroad.

    "A lot of the kids in the smaller cities have gotten a taste for a better life through social media. They look at what they see on Instagram or Telegram and compare that to their prospects, and naturally they get angry."

    The government has restricted those two apps in parts of the country but said they would be accessible again on Friday.

    Friday will be a litmus test of how strong anti-government sentiment remains. When protests are staged in Iran, they often come after Friday prayers.
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 5810

    Jan 05, 2018 4:18 AM GMT
    Oh, no... is the US about to be condemned, again, by the UN?!

    Iran accuses US of 'grotesque' meddling through social media

    The United States is tapping social media to incite protesters "to change their government," thus tampering in Iranian affairs, the Islamic republic alleged in a Thursday letter to the United Nations.


    Iranian pro-government supporters march in the city of Mashhad on Thursday.
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 5810

    Jan 05, 2018 7:27 PM GMT
    Just wow. I only read the first sentence (if anyone else read more let me know).
    The article appeared in an Israel paper and was written for an Israeli readership, thus it addressed Israelis.

    AyaTrolLiar> Israelis "think" a lot of crazy things

    As usual, the AyaTrolLiar can only participate in a thread if it's to attack Jews.
    Be it Hebrew, the Jewish language. Or Jewish holidays. Or Judaism, the Jewish religion. Or Jewish culture.
    And we should understand his "Anti-Zionism" as unrelated opposition to Israel, the Jewish state?!

    Why does virulent Anti-Semitism play such a large role in MidEast discussions on RJ?

    SCIENCE: Jews are Indigenous to Israel, in the Levant / Middle East.
    Who other than a raving racist Anti-semite would make a "racial purity" argument about Jews not being Jews?

    Chicago 'Dyke March' Bans Jewish Pride Flags: 'They Made People Feel Unsafe'

    French President Macron condemns anti-Zionism as anti-Semitism

    AyaTrolLiar> only about 1% of what I said referenced Israel (not "Jews", as he lies)

    That alleged "1%" is of course what he led off with (and after which I stopped reading).
    And of course he means Jews - as he does elsewhere (see linked threads).
    Hint: he's not referencing Israeli Arabs, which he denies exist calling them "Palestinians".
    Which is quite bizarre given that he denies ethnicity in favor of citizenship and these are Israeli, not "Palestinian", citizens.
    Thus he is talking only about Jews.

    More craziness which was pointed out to me:

    AyaTrolLiar> Iran is a vast country of over 80 million people, and there are plenty of bad eggs in the security forces who might open fire on or violate the rights of those protesting in public. But holding Rohani (or even Khamene'i) responsible for whatever abuses occur is like blaming Obama for the police murder of Black teenagers on his watch

    Can you imagine if 84 black protesters were killed by police over a few days and all the Obama administration said was that demonstrators will be dealt with harshly? Rohani and Khamne'i are responsible for those murders and the AyaTrolLiar has again exposed himself as a complete flunky idiot (in the best case).

    Assuming you haven't already put the troll on "ignore", please report his posts as spam and don't take the troll bait.

    We now return you to this thread, which discusses current events in Iran.
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 5810

    Jan 05, 2018 7:30 PM GMT
    UN experts urge Iran to respect rights of protesters, end internet crackdown

    UN human rights experts urged Iranian authorities to respect the rights of protesters and voiced concern over Tehran's restriction of social messaging services in a joint statement issued Friday by the UN agency for human rights.

    The statement by four Special Rapporteurs -- expert advisers to the United Nations who work on a voluntary basis -- comes eight days after anti-government protests first broke out in Iran.

    At least 21 people were killed and 450 were arrested in the protests, many in clashes with security forces trying to quell the rallies.

    The protests, the most powerful challenge to the regime in years, appeared to have fizzled Thursday, after a claim by Revolutionary Guards commander Mohammad Ali Jafari that the unrest was officially over. Mass pro-government rallies have taken their place in many Iranian cities.

    "We are very disturbed by the way the authorities have responded to the protests," the four Special Rapporteurs said in their statement, released by the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights.

    "The government's instruction to the Revolutionary Guards to hit hard against the protesters, and the judiciary's threats of harsh punishment, are unacceptable.

    "We urge the authorities to exercise restraint and respond proportionately in their efforts to control the protests, to limit the use of force to a strict minimum, and to fully respect the human rights of the protesters, including their rights to life, freedom of expression and peaceful assembly."

    The UN experts said they shared the concerns of Iranian civil society groups for those arrested.

    "We are also very concerned at reports that the Government has blocked the internet on mobile networks, and that social media services like Instagram and messaging services like Telegram have been shut down in an attempt to quell the protests," they said.

    "In some regions, internet access has been blocked altogether. Communication blackouts constitute a serious violation of fundamental rights."

    The experts added that the lack of measures to address the underlying causes of the unrest through non-violent means was "disturbing."

    The protests began just over a week ago over Iran's stagnant economy and the rising cost of living, and developed into a broader outcry against the government.

    The United Nations Security Council will convene a meeting on the situation in Iran at 3 p.m. ET Friday. It is expected the session, which was requested by the United States, will begin with a briefing by a UN political official. Iran could also speak.
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 5810

    Jan 06, 2018 12:53 AM GMT
    Here's why the Iran protests are significant

    The largest public display of discontent in Iran since the 2009 Green Movement has resulted in 21 deaths and 450 arrests, restricted access to social media apps and brought pushback from the Iranian government. Such scenes might have been unfathomable a decade ago -- but these new protests, challenging the rule of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, represent discontent rarely seen in Iran.

    CNN spoke with experts about the ongoing unrest in the Islamic Republic of Iran.

    Why is this happening?

    The protests, which began Thursday night, are a reaction to Iran's sputtering economy, rampant corruption and rising fuel and food prices.

    But something larger seems to be at play.

    Iranians are angry, experts say, because they expected life to get better when severe sanctions were lifted after the deal in 2015 between the P5+1 and Iran over its nuclear program. The five permanent members of the UN Security Council -- the United States, the UK, Russia, China and France -- and Germany make up the P5+1.

    While restrictions on financial, energy and transportation sectors were removed, hundreds of Iranian entities were not taken off the blacklists. And the United States has moved to create new sanctions over other violations, including a rocket launch this past summer.

    Trita Parsi, president of the National Iranian American Council, and other experts say endemic economic mismanagement and corruption have left Iranians disenchanted.

    Government policies have brought about higher unemployment and inflation. And there's a lack of sturdy international investment, Parsi added.

    "The nuclear deal is overwhelmingly supported by the Iranian public, but there was an expectation that much more economic development would come out of it," Parsi said.

    Is this just about bread and gas prices?

    No. Years of political, economic and social grievances have driven some Iranians into the streets in the largest protests since 2009, said Reza Marashi, research director for the National Iranian American Council.

    "Economic sanctions have exacerbated all of those Iranian-origin economic problems," he said.

    "I don't think you can separate the economic from the political," he told CNN. "The government has an opportunity and a responsibility to address legitimate grievances that are being expressed."

    Alireza Nader, a senior international analyst and Iran researcher at the Rand Corp. in Washington, said people have also lost trust in Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.

    "The government is viewed as highly corrupt, increasing inequality is seen by the population as really a form of injustice," he said, adding "this was supposed to be a system that delivered justice to the people after the revolution of 1979 and it has failed."

    Karim Sadjadpour, a senior fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, said there's also a push to secure equal rights for women.

    Nader said women in Iran have been fighting for decades for equal rights, but especially in the last few years, such efforts have become stronger.

    "Women in Iran are highly educated. They are involved in the workforce, arguably more so than any other country in the Middle East, and they are continually suppressed. This is part of their fight to gain their freedom and their rights," he said.

    An Iranian vice president said Saturday the government would work harder to resolve economic hardships.

    Are these protests similar to those in 2009?

    The new protests are intense, but so far they are nowhere as big as those in the Green Movement in which millions took part after accusations of widespread election fraud in 2009.

    The National Iranian American Council's Marashi said today's demonstrations may be more of a civil rights movement than a revolutionary one.

    There are other important distinctions. While the earlier protests primarily were in Tehran, had specific goals and an organized hierarchy of leadership, the current ones seem to challenge the rule of the Supreme Leader directly and have been seen across the country.

    The exact origins of the protests are hard to pinpoint, but religious hardliners opposed to what they see as Rouhani's moderation are thought to have started them in Qom and Mashhad. They quickly spread to a wider section of the population focused on airing their economic grievances -- and more notably -- their dissatisfaction against Khamenei's rule.

    "This is something that didn't happen in 2009. This is a huge thing to happen in Iran," said Nic Robertson, CNN's international diplomatic editor. "People don't say that publicly on the streets."

    One resident told CNN of witnessing a protester tearing down a poster of Khamenei near Tehran University.

    In his first remarks since the protests began, Khamenei on Tuesday accused Iran's enemies of "joining forces" and blamed them for inciting the protests.

    Who are the protesters?

    Many of the demonstrators are young Iranians fed up with the lack of economic opportunity.

    Iran's unemployment rate among those 15 to 29 is well over 24%, according to official statistics -- and even higher among urban youth and women. The International Monetary Fund has called Iranian women an "untapped source of growth and productivity."

    The protestors likely include some disillusioned Rouhani supporters, but they probably don't make up the bulk of the demonstrators, according to Parsi. Seven months ago, Rouhani won re-election with 57% of the vote (and 70% voter participation).

    It's likely these protesters are people that typically stay away from traditional politics. Uncompromisingly anti-regime slogans suggest these demonstrators may belong to those who tend not to vote, don't believe the system can be reformed and either never subscribed to or have lost hope in gradual change, Parsi adds.

    Other protesters are thought to include those who feel sidelined by economic desperation and humiliation.

    How have global leaders responded?

    President Donald Trump has been fiercely critical of the Iranian regime, prompting a tit for tat between him and Iranian leaders.

    On Friday, Trump first tweeted, "The world is watching!" and that "oppressive regimes cannot endure forever." Trump said that Iran's leadership is squandering wealth to fund terrorism elsewhere.

    On Monday, Rouhani said Trump has no right to sympathize with Iran because he has called the Iranian people "terrorists," according to Iran's semiofficial Tasnim News Agency. And on Sunday, state television broadcast Rouhani saying that Trump is "constantly creating problems" for Iranians, including with regard to visas and financial issues.

    On Tuesday, the US leader continued his support for anti-government protests while lambasting deals negotiated in the wake of the Iran nuclear agreement under President Barack Obama.

    Khamenei blamed Iran's "enemies" for stirring up unrest in the country, though he didn't mention Trump by name, while the secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council, Ali Shamkhani, accused the United States, UK and Saudi Arabia of using hashtags and social media campaigns inside Iran to incite riots.

    AyaTrolLiar> I've... read a couple of his books

    LOL. He's only published 2 books.

    First the Iranian apologists seeks to dismiss the uprising (as he did the 2009 Iranian protests) and then he tells us he's a fan of the person explaining its significance?
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 5810

    Jan 06, 2018 6:45 AM GMT
    Why did protests erupt in Iran?

    The Islamic Republic of Iran is the platypus of humanity's political evolution.

    Episodic Iranian unrest, from the focused, reformist uprising of 2009 (led by middle-class protesters of Tehran) to the current, wildly rejectionist riots (spearheaded by the underclass and the unemployed in the poor neighborhoods of provincial towns) cannot be understood in isolation from that melange of procedural democracy and obscurantist theocracy that was crammed into the constitution of revolutionary Iran, four decades ago.

    Deep within Iran's authoritarian system there is a tiny democratic heart, complete with elective, presidential and parliamentary chambers, desperately beating against an unyielding, theocratic exoskeleton. That palpitating democratic heart has prolonged the life of the system - despite massive mismanagement of the domestic and international affairs by the revolutionary elites.

    But it has failed to soften the authoritarian carapace. The reform movement has failed in its mission because the constitution grants three quarters of the political power to the office of the "Supreme Leader": an unelected, permanent appointment whereby a "religious jurist" gains enormous powers, including command of the armed forces and foreign policy, veto power over presidential cabinets and parliamentary initiatives, and the world's most formidable Pretorian Guard (IRGC), with military, paramilitary, intelligence, judicial and extrajudicial powers to enforce the will of its master.

    The democratically-elected president and parliament (let alone the media and ordinary citizens) have no prayer of checking the powers of the Supreme Leader. As a result, the system has remained opaque, blind to its own flaws, resistant to growth and incapable of adaptation to its evolving internal and external environments.

    These uprisings express the frustration of the people with that obdurate rigidity.

    It took a decade after the revolution of 1978-1979 for the democracy movement to gain self-consciousness, in the mind of a segment of the cadre elite of the revolution, at the disappointing end of the Iran-Iraq war in 1988.

    It took another decade for this sentiment to gestate before it took political shape in the wave that carried President Mohammed Khatami to power in 1997. The empowered reformists aimed to strengthen the democratic component of the Republic while softening its theocratic and authoritarian casing.

    They failed in this mission because the ruling theocrats would not brook the slightest diminishment of their power. They fought Khatami tooth and nail and sabotaged his plans. They created, in the words of the first reformist president, a "crisis every nine days" to break him.

    The failure of the reformers resulted in a popular malaise. As hopes of reforming the Islamic Republic were frustrated, many stayed away from the polls in 2005 elections. This allowed the rise of a neo-conservative counter elite headed by the firebrand, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

    The ensuing international isolation and precipitous devaluation of the currency sobered the people enough to send them back to the polls in 2009, to depose the dangerous lunatic who had climbed to the office of presidency. When Ahmadinejad was declared the winner, the perception of a stolen election led to immense street demonstrations that came to be known as the Green Uprising.

    Unlike the present riots, the 2009 movement had a well-defined political vision and a seasoned leadership which was quickly arrested, prosecuted and imprisoned. Street demonstrations were brutally suppressed.

    Ahmadinejad's second term was even more disastrous than his first. The near economic collapse under the UN-imposed sanctions, and rampant profiteering due to the ubiquitous black market in everything from cancer drugs to selling oil in international markets, persuaded people to once again return to the polls.

    In the 2013 elections, people elected Hassan Rouhani, a moderate cleric who promised international normalisation and economic prosperity, but not hardcore reform or liberalisation. The reformers extended an olive branch to the autocratic right-wing establishment to let the bygones of 2009 be bygones.

    But the Supreme Leader arrogantly rejected the gesture. Far from being ashamed of what they had done, the ruling theocrats had decided to transform the suppression of the Green Uprising into a foundational myth for their neo-fundamentalist cult. Not even the emerging regional threats by a new Arab/Israeli alliance and the election of a blatantly anti-Iran president in the United States persuaded the right wing to put aside their "anti-reformist" sentiments.

    In his first term, Rouhani managed to check the hyperinflation and the runaway unemployment while concluding a historic agreement with Iran's iconic adversary, the US. But his second term did not start auspiciously.

    First, Rouhani appeared to buckle under right-wing pressures when he appointed a relatively conservative cabinet: A disappointing pattern people had already seen in President Khatami's second term. To make matters worse, the Americans under Trump (or, as he is known in Iran, the American Ahmadinejad) started to renege on the promises of the nuclear deal. Hopes for a quick recovery had now been dashed.

    Further fuel was added to the volatile mix as a series of mammoth corruption schemes came to the light. Then, under pressure from the right wing, President Rouhani decided to justify raising taxes on gasoline by revealing the massive, entitlement budget for religious foundations that was imposed on him by powers that be. It is hard to overestimate the anger this profligacy inspired in people.

    The straw that broke the proverbial camel's back was a mere rise in the price of eggs. The right-wing powerful duo of the city of Mashad, Ebrahim Raisi (the embittered rival of Rouhani in the recent elections) and his famously simple-minded father-in-law, Ahmad Alamolhoda, struck the first match by staging a small anti-Rouhani demonstration, blaming the high price of consumer goods on the Rouhani government.

    This was the proximate cause of the current unrest, which must be seen only as a trigger, rather than its driving force. The sudden spread of these riots has led to the speculation that they are instigated by extraterritorial enemies such as the Saudi-Israeli-US alliance. But, as there is nothing new about that sort of anti-regime agitation, it is unlikely that they were causally significant.

    As long as Iran does not radically modify its institution of the office of the Supreme Leader, and as long as the democratic element of that system remains marginalised and powerless to express the wishes of the people and reduce tensions through legal representation, riots and uprisings will be an immanent and permanent feature of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

    Maybe, under a benevolent despot, all these powers would be put to effective use. But Iran and its neighbours on all sides are no exception to British historian Lord Acton's rule: "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Great men are almost always bad men."
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 5810

    Jan 07, 2018 12:19 AM GMT
    So much for the apologist AyaTrolLiar's flunky idiocy about a few

    AyaTrolLiar> bad eggs in the security forces who might open fire on or violate the rights of those protesting in public. But holding Rohani (or even Khamene'i) responsible for whatever abuses occur is like blaming Obama for the police murder of Black teenagers on his watch

    Note the mis-use of the English idiom by the shill, an ostensible native speaker of English (the correct one is "bad apple").

    Such abuses aren't just systemic but chronic in Iran.

    The comparison to Obama is another sign of mental sickness. Can you imagine had 84 black teenagers been shot in a few days - for peacefully demonstrating - and all Obama said was that they will crack down hard on demonstrators? Would any sane person seek to dismiss this as just a few "bad egg" police officers opening fire?

    Below we see that the head of Iran’s Revolutionary Court threatened those who were legally demonstrating and were arrested with the death penalty. Maybe he, too, is just a "bad egg"?!

    More than 1,000 detained in crackdown against Iran protests, rights groups say

    More than a thousand people have been rounded up and detained in Iran over the past week, rights groups and the State Department said Thursday, as authorities try to quell the largest street protests in nearly a decade.

    Amnesty International warned that those being held risk torture and ill-treatment in the country’s prisons, calling for the release of those arrested for demonstrating peacefully. Earlier this week, the head of Iran’s Revolutionary Court warned that arrested demonstrators could face the death penalty.

    “The Iranian authorities have an appalling track record of carrying out mass arbitrary arrests of peaceful demonstrators,” said Philip Luther, the regional research and advocacy director at Amnesty. “Given the alarming scale of the current wave of arrests, it is highly likely that many of those held are peaceful protesters who have been detained arbitrarily and now find themselves in prisons where conditions are dire and torture is a common tool to extract confessions and punish dissidents.”

    An unverified video circulating online claimed to show families of detainees waiting outside Tehran’s notorious Evin prison. There, at least 423 detainees were registered in just two days over New Year’s, Amnesty said, citing the Human Rights Activist News Agency. The site, which focuses on Iranian rights abuses, said the number of detentions across the country was likely “much higher” than the 1,000 reported.

    Hundreds are being held in Evin prison’s “quarantine section,” Amnesty said, a screening area for new arrivals that has a capacity for only 180.
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 5810

    Jan 07, 2018 6:06 AM GMT
    I'm not a native speaker of English, but my command of English is apparently better than the shill who first identified as a "Brit of Irish background" (this to explain his understanding of the Arab-Israeli conflict) and years later started claiming he was "half-Jewish" (something the racist Anti-semite claims is impossible since it's only a religious designation).

    The use of "bad egg" is a reference to a rotten individual, unrelated to a batch or group.
    The meaning of "bad apple" is an exception to a group that otherwise is good.

    Aristo/Shark/speare, in saying that the AyaTrolLiar is "an all around shitty excuse for a human being", was saying he is a "bad egg", rotten to the core. His point wasn't that RJ (which the AyaTrolLiar describes as a "dating app") is full of good people and that the AyaTrolLiar is just one "bad apple".

    AyaTrolLiar> Israeli... Israel's... the US President...

    Notice how the flunky wants to discuss everything but the topic of this thread?
    Typical troll behavior!

    The murder of 21 peaceful protesters by Iranian forces is not the work of a "bad egg" or "bad apples".
    It is state policy, as we have seen spoken both by the President and a Chief Judge.

    Note further how the flunky gloats that none of the 1,000 arrested are likely to be executed.
    As if even if true that makes it OK that they were arrested and 21 others were already murdered by the Iranian regime.

    Such abuses aren't just systemic but chronic in Iran.

    AyaTrolLiar> [whatabout....]

    The comparison to Obama is another sign of mental sickness. Can you imagine had 84 black teenagers been shot in a few days - for peacefully demonstrating - and all Obama said was that they will crack down hard on demonstrators? Would any sane person seek to dismiss this as just a few "bad egg" police officers opening fire?

    AyaTrolLiar> [gone!]

    The best case scenario is that the AyaTrolLiar is an Iranian agent.
    Otherwise he's just one sick, rotten, egg.
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 5810

    Jan 07, 2018 9:30 AM GMT
    The murder of 21 peaceful protesters by Iranian forces is not the work of a "bad egg" or "bad apples".
    It is state policy, as we have seen spoken both by the President and a Chief Judge.
    Such abuses aren't just systemic but chronic in Iran.

    Note further how the flunky gloats that none of the 1,000 arrested are likely to be executed.
    As if even if true that makes it OK that they were arrested and 21 others were already murdered by the Iranian regime.

    AyaTrolLiar> Palestinians....


  • venue35

    Posts: 4780

    Jan 07, 2018 9:58 PM GMT
    You two are totally obsessed with eachother.
    Maybe you guys should meet up.
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 5810

    Jan 08, 2018 3:04 AM GMT
    He follows me like a shadow. Watch, he'll post again in minutes.

    Indeed, the AyaTrolLiar once "explained" he logged in to RJ at 10 minute intervals 24/7 just to see if I posted. (Well, he claimed he had to in order to keep up with his email, having asked others to email him what I said while he pretended to have me on "ignore". Even as he was stalking my profile with his kiriak sock-puppet. If his sock-puppet actually emailed him is anyone's guess.)

    Southbeach once observed that even after I was off RJ for months, no sooner had I posted and within minutes the AyaTrolLiar was back. SB thought it to mean that the AyaTrolLiar was my sock-puppet, but seems as if stuck in his mum's basement, the AyaTrolLiar - for months - kept looking in on RJ, just waiting for me to post.

    Another time it was opined that he's a "plant in the audience", to make me look good with his stupid arguments.

    I don't even read his threads and most of his posts.
    Does anyone?!

    When I peek at his posts here, I can immediately see he's off to talking about Israel, Jews or America... not Iran.
    Trolls can never address a topic in its thread.
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 5810

    Jan 08, 2018 3:08 AM GMT
    Needless to say, his record on Iran - like everything else - is abysmal.

    About those massive demonstrations back in 2009:

    AyaTrollah pouncer> Iran is NOT cracking down brutally on its own protesters. Probably because Iran doesn't HAVE protesters in the kind of numbers it would take to mount any serious challenge to the government (this in a country of nearly 80 million people).

    Guess propaganda pouncer must have only been getting his news from PressTV in 2009:

    Yeah,pouncer must be right. Not many people protested at all... icon_rolleyes.gif

    Iran protest crackdown condemned
    Amnesty International has condemned the Iranian authorities for breaking up an apparently peaceful march held in Tehran in support of Egyptian and Tunisian protests. Protests were also reportedly held in other cities across Iran, such as Esfahan, Shiraz and Kermanshah.

    Note that Amnesty International is not discussing 2009 above but a later brutal crackdown.

    Rather than ever being critical of Iran, he was seeking to sell how it is democratic and has more press freedom and freedom of thought than the USA and Britain.

    Indeed, when the violence started in Syria, he was quoting PressTV saying that only "scores" had been killed by the Assad regime (which elsewhere he called an American lackey) at a time that the death toll was already in the thousands.
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 5810

    Jan 08, 2018 5:31 AM GMT
    The Battle for Iran
    Change will not come easily, peacefully, or soon.

    Protest movements in the Middle East face enormous repressive hurdles and rarely have happy endings. Even when protesters “succeed” in toppling an autocrat, they’ve rarely succeeded in ending autocracy.

    In Iran, the obstacles to success are daunting. Whereas most Middle Eastern countries are ruled by secular autocrats focused on repressing primarily Islamist opposition, Iran is an Islamist autocracy focused on repressing secular opposition. This dynamic—unarmed, unorganized, leaderless citizens seeking economic dignity and pluralism, versus a heavily armed, organized, rapacious ruling theocracy that espouses martyrdom—is not a recipe for success.

    And yet, against this inauspicious backdrop, Iran’s mushrooming anti-government protests—although so far much smaller in scale than the country’s 2009 uprising—have been unprecedented in their geographic scope and intensity. They began December 28 in Mashhad, a Shiite pilgrimage city often considered a regime stronghold, with protesters chanting slogans like “leave Syria alone, think about us.” They soon spread to Qom, Iran’s holiest city, where protesters expressed nostalgia for Reza Shah, the 20th-century modernizing autocrat who ruthlessly repressed the clergy. They continued in provincial towns, with thousands chanting, “we don’t want an Islamic Republic” in Najafabad, “death to the revolutionary guards” in Rasht, and “death to the dictator” in Khoramabad. They’ve since spread to Tehran, and hundreds have been arrested, the BBC reported, citing Iranian officials.

    ...The Iranian government has the highest per capita execution rate in the world, treats women as second class citizens, persecutes gays and religious minorities, and stifles free speech. While there is a natural inclination among decent people everywhere to want a peaceful civil rights movement to succeed in Iran, there are ample reasons to believe it will not. The regime’s coercive apparatus—the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and the Bassij milita—are organized, armed, and abundant, and well-practiced in the brutal science of repression. Opponents of the government, in contrast, are unarmed, leaderless, and rudderless. In addition, Iran has at its disposal tens of thousands of Shia militiamen—including Lebanese Hezbollah—it has been cultivating for years and in some cases decades. For these battle-hardened forces, crushing unarmed Iranian protesters is a much easier task than fighting Syrian rebels or Sunni jihadists.

    While some have expressed hope these protests might compel the Iranian government to try and address popular grievances, history shows us the opposite is more likely true. In the weeks and months to come, expect the regime to grow ever more repressive. Iran’s security forces thrive when there is insecurity. Some Iranians even fear the IRGC has allowed the protests to fester as a pretext for expanding their authority in the name of national security.
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 5810

    Jan 09, 2018 7:53 PM GMT
    The Atlantic noted
    The Iranian government has the highest per capita execution rate in the world, treats women as second class citizens, persecutes gays and religious minorities, and stifles free speech.

    They forgot to mention that Iran ranks in the bottom 4 or 5 when it comes to press freedom, too.

    And that candidates have to be vetted, approved, by the unelected Guardian Council.
    (Half of which is directly appointed by the unelected Supreme Leader, the other half by the Judiciary... which is appointed by the Supreme Leader.)

    And this is hailed by some nuts as an exemplary "democracy", more virtuous than western states?!
    Quite drunk on the Kool-aid!
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 5810

    Jan 10, 2018 6:02 PM GMT
    Rouhani says Iran protests about more than economy

    In a swipe at his hardline rivals, President Hassan Rouhani said on Monday young Iranian protesters were unhappy about far more than just the economy and they would no longer defer to the views and lifestyle of an aging revolutionary elite.

    The pragmatic cleric, who defeated anti-Western hardliners to win re-election last year, also called for the lifting of curbs on social media used by anti-government protesters in the most sustained challenge to conservative authorities since 2009.

    “It would be a misrepresentation (of events) and also an insult to Iranian people to say they only had economic demands,” Rouhani was quoted as saying by Tasnim news agency.

    “People had economic, political and social demands.”

    Rouhani, 69, suggested there was a generational element to the unrest, which appears to have been spearheaded by under-25s.

    “We cannot pick a lifestyle and tell two generations after us to live like that. It is impossible... The views of the young generation about life and the world is different than ours,” he said.

    The Revolutionary Guards, Iran’s security backbone since the 1979 revolution that created the Islamic Republic, said on Sunday the security forces had put an end to a week of unrest fomented by what it called foreign enemies.

    The protests, which began over economic hardships suffered by the young and working class, spread to more than 80 cities and towns and has resulted in 22 deaths and more than 1,000 arrests, according to Iranian officials.

    Hamid Shahriari, the deputy head of the Judiciary said that all ringleaders of the protests had been identified and arrested, and they would be firmly punished and might face capital punishment.

    [Note: Iran executes more people than any other country]
  • mwolverine

    Posts: 5810

    Jan 10, 2018 6:02 PM GMT
    The country’s financial support for Palestinians and the Lebanese Shi‘ite group Hezbollah also angered Iranians, who want their government to focus on domestic economic problems instead.

    Rouhani won re-election last year by promising more jobs for Iran’s youth through more foreign investment, as well as more social justice, individual freedom and political tolerance - aims questioned by his main challenger in the contest.

    Echoing some of his campaign rhetoric, Rouhani said on Monday people should be allowed to criticize all Iranian officials, with no exception.

    Demonstrators initially vented their anger over high prices and alleged corruption, but the protests took on a rare political dimension, with a growing number of people calling on Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, 78, to step down.

    The Supreme Leader is commander-in-chief of the armed forces and appoints the heads of the judiciary. Key ministers are selected with his agreement and he has the ultimate say on Iran’s foreign policy. By comparison, the president has little power.

    “No one is innocent and people are allowed to criticize everyone,” said Rouhani.

    Rouhani also dismissed calls from hardline clerics who had asked the government to permanently block access social media and messaging apps.

    As protests have ebbed, the government has lifted restrictions it imposed on Instagram, one of the social media tools used to mobilize protesters. But access to a more widely used messaging app, Telegram, was still blocked. The government has said the restrictions would be temporary.

    “People’s access to social media should not permanently be restricted. We cannot be indifferent to people’s life and business,” Rouhani said.

    Morteza Mousavian, head of information technology in the ministry of culture, was quoted as saying by Donya-e-Eqtesad Daily on Sunday that 9,000 business entities have been affected by the ban on Telegram. Half of Iran’s 80 million population use Telegram....

    Iranian Vice-President Masoumeh Ebtekar tweeted on Monday that Rouhani has insisted that all detained students should be released.

    Mohammad Bathaei, the education minister said on Monday there were many school children among the detainees and he was asking for their release before exam season.

    Amnesty International said last week that more than 1,000 Iranians had been arrested and detained in jails “notorious for torture and other ill-treatment over the past seven days”, with many being denied access to families and lawyers.