Bowderlizing in Bahrain 0

A Bahrainian newspaper has been taken out of print after an article criticising the Iranian government was published.

You can’t escape anti-semitism in the Middle East, it’s enshrined in societal thinking, even when criticising each other.  And so my favourite part of the article was this:

The writer, who like Iran’s leaders is a Shia Muslim, also referred to speculation that Mr Ahmadinejad may have Jewish ancestors.

Those sneaky Jews.

Posted under Arab States, Iran by on Monday, June 22, 2009

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Tumult in Tehran 0

J Post reports on the continued riots.

Here’s a video of live ammunition being fired into the crowd.

Hard to tell how much is true of this, but there is no doubt of the cruel methods being used by the authorities:

“We can see the smoke and the helicopters from our house,” said a source in Teheran. “They have closed down all the roads, trapping the people, who are being bombarded.”

People were chanting “Allah Akbar” and “We will kill those who kill our brothers” from their windows, balconies, and rooftops, he said.

Most of Mousavi’s supporters “are not leaving our homes,” he went on.

“God help those people [who have gone out] in Freedom Square. The last we heard, helicopters are pouring boiling hot water on the people,” said another source. His account could not be confirmed, but other reports also spoke of boiling water being dropped from the helicopters, and of an undefined “acid” being sprayed at demonstrators by security forces on the streets. “Hospitals are overflowing and the embassies in Teheran have left their doors open to provide a haven for the injured for sanctuary,” the source added.

Obama’s starting to speak.

He is urging Iran’s leaders to “govern through consent, not coercion” And in a statement from the White House on Saturday, he said: “The universal rights to assembly and free speech must be respected, and the United States stands with all who seek to exercise those rights.”

No direct condemnation. A country that funds the murder of your soldiers in Iraq is crippled with angry young voters. If the protesters had the backing of the world’s most powerful man behind them, it would give their cause an energy and possibility of success. Some have argued that this would give the hardliners real ammunition: the chance to blame America – the interfering superpower. But this is nonsense, the protesters are people young and old, deeply religious and not at all. They have the chance to change something here. And they won’t for the most part believe that the whole protests are being fomented by Israeli and US agents – as the regime is claiming.

Iran seems to have a revolution every 35 years, and they’re overdue for one now.

Posted under Arab States, Commentary, Iran, News, United States by on Sunday, June 21, 2009

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Support the Iranian Students 2

If you’re a facebook user, you may want to join this group – it’s set up by a friend of mine, and he’s got some fascinating links on it, including this rather damning picture.

Also, Twitter users:

Posted under Iran by on Thursday, June 18, 2009

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