Lines in the Sand

19 06 2009

Well, the Grand Poobah and Supreme Panjanderum gave his speech … sermon … whatever. I’m reasonably certain the use of lethal levels of tedium is a violation of some International Law or another. Short version: Everything is wonderful. I am the Voice of Allah, and disagreeing with me deserves death. No one disagrees with me. There are no protests, only agents of the Imperialist running-dog immoral Zionist whaaargarble ….


CNN, those stalwarts, took the time to agree with the Supreme Fuckwad in every detail, setting a new low for journalistic credibility. The epic failure of the regular media sources in the US to react to the events in Iran underscores how seriously out of touch and irrelevant they are increasingly becoming. While the internet has been providing imagery, video, interviews, and real-time commentary, American media organizations have been providing a journalism-like entertainment art product. Contrast CNN’s coverage with this brief analysis by Tatsuma from

A relatively large crowd was present to hear Khameini declared during the prayers, while Reformist leaders called on their supporters to stay home. It was very easy to notice that this crowd was also much older than those we have seen revolting.

There were two sermons, a religious one and a political one.
– The religious sermon itself was rather short and stayed on topic. It concentrated at first on peace and tranquility, leading into the fact that the Revolution was the Will of Allah, that it was sacred and its goals were the goals of Allah. He continued by asking Allah victory over their common enemies, and that people who went against the Revolution were enemies of Allah.

– The policial speech was much longer and disjointed. He started by thanking everyone for the election, then he proceeded to blame the West, claimed that Iran was one of the most democratic country on Earth and that the results were not rigged. He claimed that while yes, there is some corruption in Iran, it’s nowhere near the UK MP expenses scandal. He then directly threatened the pro-Reformists leaders, saying that all the violence will be their responsibility. This is all the works of Zionist spies and British radio, and Hillary Clinton was responsible for Waco so Iran is better than America and the West.

There are three major statements to be gleaned from these speech, with further confirmation of a fourth. However boring and long-winded it might have been to the Western ear, it was a major milestone of this revolution, and its implications are far-reaching:

1- His declaration that the Islamic Revolution sacred, that its goals were the goals of Allah and that those who went against it were the enemies of Allah. He then asked Allah victory over the enemies.

This is major. He has in fact painted the entire reformist movement as being anti-Islamic. Due to his position, and the tone that he adopted, this is basically a death sentence delivered to those who will keep on protesting. Not unexpected, but a bold move nonetheless.

2 – He fully supports Ahmadinejad.

This is not a surprise, but he did not back down one inch. He does not give credibility to any of the Reformist claims, and says to either toe the line, or suffer the consequences.

3 – He has put the responsability of violence on the shoulders of the Reformist leaders, and openly declared that he is not going to tolerate it anymore.

This means that the repression from now on will be much more violent, and has more or less openly threatened the leaders of the Revolution that they will pay with their lives if they continue.

4 – As confirmed by Stratfor, the Revolutionary Guard has taken over from the police in all matters of domestic law and order. This effectively means that they are going to start crushing dissent as well, and that they have allied themselves to the regime.

Out of all major developments, this is the biggest one. Will the army stay Neutral, toe the line or side with the Reformists?

There seems to be a significant amount of discontinuity of meaning between these two reports. here is some more copypasta from FARK:

This is the culmination of everything the Internet represents: A global voice without borders that cannot be suppressed.
This may well mark a key moment in the evolution of a new society that has been slowly gathering together from the various pockets of the Interwebs and are now crawling from the primordial soup and onto the land and becoming a true culture that can bring about massive change on a global scale.

CNN and their US competitors appear to have utterly dropped the ball on this story- an unforgivable lapse on the part of the so-called “fourth estate”. By contrast, the supposedly-on-the-verge-of-extinction dead-tree press is actually catching up to the web in terms of information.

Since the Grand Poobah made his speech, everyone with a functioning frontal lobe (I include CNN “journalists” as a courtesy) should be aware that the government will not compromise. Regardless of whether the protesters are victorious or get gunned down by the thousands, the government of Iran can no longer exist in its curent incarnation. With so much in the balance, only fools or madmen would risk it all on one throw of the dice. It is an open question whether or not the Army will permit the indiscriminate slaughter of the people they are supposed to be protecting. There are even some doubts about the Revolutionary Guard. The doddering old xenophobes pretending to be men of God who rule Iranare either deluding themselves about the extent of their power or fatally out of touch with ground truth. This does not bode well for Iran.

The government claims that there have been 8 people killed. The number is almost certainly higher, but hard data is hard to come by- the more so as the Basij have reportedly been removing the bodies of the dead from hospitals. Here is a link to the Missing Persons forum set up by Anonymous Iran. Hundreds of protesters and those suspected of supporting them have reportedly been arrested. Many have simply disappeared. These are not the actions of a just government.

Those who wish to show their support can find graphics to download and display at this site. Those who wish to follow the protesters on Twitter can do so by following this link. Anyone who wishes to take more active measures might find this list of Iranian government IP addresses useful. Be aware that people in the US have reportedly been harassed and threatened for actively supporting those who oppose the government of Iran.

As for me, I can only watch and report. It is not enough- especially in light of the bloodbat I foresee in Iran- but it is all that is within my power. But I will not- I cannot- be silent while the best and brightest in Iran stand in silent protest against the guns and clubs of the theocratic murderers who claim to be their rulers.

We, the People of the United States, owe them at least that much.


Current status- Alarmed

Current music- Your Brains by Jonathan Coulton