Sunday, June 14, 2009

6.14.09 Iranian Revolution, Coup or Protest? Time Will Reveal


via Andrew Sullivan

Something about the Iran has captured my attention.
People protest around the world all of the time, but there
is something about this that is moving.

Perhaps its the young people in the street going for
what they know.
*The charisma and passion is inspiring,
yet I need to know more about the dynamics and contours
of the conflict.

The police beating on them reminds me of East Oakland.

I have also been reading Chomsky, so the mainstream media's
blackout clear, intentional and noticeable.

Background - The Iranian Revolution 1979
Here is a little background on the Iranian Revolution in 1979.
According to Wikipedia

The Iranian Revolution of 1979 (mostly known as the Islamic Revolution, Persian: انقلاب اسلامی, Enghelābe Eslāmi) refers to events involving the overthrow of Iran's monarchy under Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi and its replacement with an Islamic republic under Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the leader of the revolution. It has been called an event that "made Islamic fundamentalism a political force ... from Morocco to Malaysia."

The revolution was populist, nationalist and later Shi'a Islamic. It was in part a conservative backlash against the Westernizing and secularizing efforts of the Western-backed Shah,and not-so-conservative reaction to social injustice and other shortcomings of the ancien regime. The Shah was perceived by many as beholden to — if not a puppet of — a non-Muslim Western power, (the United States), whose culture was contaminating that of Iran's. The Shah's regime was also seen as oppressive, brutal, corrupt, and extravagant.The regime also suffered from basic functional failures — an overly-ambitious economic program that brought economic bottlenecks, shortages and inflation.Security forces were unable to deal with protest and demonstrations; Iran was an overly centralized royal power structure. The extraordinarily large size of the anti-shah movement meant that there "were literally too many protesters to arrest", and that the security forces were overwhelmed.
Context for Today's Protests
Henry Newman from the Guardian writes,
There seems little doubt now that something resembling a coup d'état has been attempted in Tehran. The next few days will reveal if it is to succeed. In scenes not witnessed since the mass protests that brought about a revolution that deposed the Shah in 1979, violent demonstrations have broken out in multiple Iranian cities. Crowds chant anti-Ahmedinejad slogans such as "Death to the Dictator". Hundreds of thousands of supporters of the candidate heavily defeated in Friday's presidential election, Mir Hossein Mousavi, have rejected his defeat – claiming foul play....

This crisis in Iran has two broad possible outcomes: either the regime will back down and arrange for a recount or the security forces will act to preserve control by using ever more violent means to quash the demonstrations. Unfortunately, the latter scenario seems more probable.

At this point, it is pertinent to ask who is running the show: is Ali Khamenei, the Supreme Leader and official head of state, really holding the levers of power, or has control been seized by re-elected President Ahmedinejad? What about ex-President Hashemi Rafsanjani, head of the Expediency Council, who was humiliated by the Supreme Leader yesterday and portrayed as corrupt and traitorous. Some suggest that he has travelled to Qom, Iran's holiest city, to try to persuade senior clerics to back him and Mousavi. Ever since the revolution, power in Iran has been fragmented and divided; now it seems more so than ever. At this stage and with such insufficient evidence it is extremely hard to tell what forces are really at play.

What are the global implications of this?

Bush said that Iran was apart of the axis of evil, yet President
Obama has said that we wants to have talks with Iran. It was
subsequently reported in conservative mainstream media,
during the recent presidential election that he wanted to hold
hands with terrorists.

What to make of this? I don't know. I am going to take Juan
Cole's advice and read everything, yet, not believe it
until more comes out.

Time will tell.

Other links that I have found:
Protest Video Page on Youtube - [Ahriman46]
The Daily Dish - [Andrew Sullivan]
Hot Air - [Michelle Malkin]
Informed Comment [Juan Cole]
Real Clear World [Kevin Sullivan]
Flickr Photo Stream of Khordad Protests [Mousavi1388]

Is it me or is it something about seeing all those folks in the street?

Sort of reminds me of the night the Obama won, where instead of hope
and happiness folks are protesting, enraged, suppressed and beaten?

Makes me think of what Nov 4th would have looked like if McCain or
some other third party won. But then again, I don't know if we
have it in us to take it to the streets.

*If you have any info this story, tweet, em, or post in comments and I
will amend.

No comments:

Post a Comment

eXTReMe Tracker