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Thread: 'Neda' becomes rallying cry in Iranian protests

  1. #1
    Elite Member Mr. Authority's Avatar
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    Unhappy 'Neda' becomes rallying cry in Iranian protests

    (CNN) -- "RIP NEDA, The World cries seeing your last breath, you didn't die in vain. We remember you."
    People tend to a woman called Neda as she lies on the street.

    People tend to a woman called Neda as she lies on the street.

    That post on Twitter came from a man who identified himself as an American guitarist in Nashville, Tennessee.

    Amid the hundreds of images and videos of Saturday's brutal crackdown on protesters in Iran that flooded the Internet, it was the graphic video showing the death of a young woman that touched a nerve among those following the events in Tehran for more than a week.

    Like most of the information coming out of Tehran, it is impossible to verify her name, Neda, or the circumstances of her apparent death, captured close-up on a bystander's camera.

    CNN ran a pixilated version of the video, which was posted on YouTube. It shows a woman in jeans and white sneakers collapsed on the street, as the person with the camera -- most likely from a cell phone -- runs toward her and focuses on her face.

    One blogger posted that Neda was protesting with her father in Tehran when pro-government Basiji militia opened fire and shot her in the heart.

    "The final moments of her tender young life leaked into the pavement of Karegeh Street today, captured by cell phone cameras," the unnamed blogger posted on Newsvine.com. "And not long after, took on new life, flickering across computer screens around the world on YouTube, and even CNN." iReport.com: Share images from Iran

    People on Twitter starting forming a discussion group with the "hashtag" .neda to post their comments about her death and media coverage of the killing, as well.
    'Neda' becomes rallying cry for Iranian protests - CNN.com

  2. #2
    Elite Member ana-mish-ana's Avatar
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    I saw the pics - I cant handle watching the video
    But I think her death is going to be the turning point in all of this.
    There was also reports and I think a vid of 7 year old boy being beaten up viciously by Basjid members.

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    Elite Member january's Avatar
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    I saw the video on CNN today, I was moved in such a terrible way. It was not the pixilated video. You literally see the life go out of her eyes, before the blood starts pouring out of her mouth. I have never seen someone die up close like that before, it was absolutely heartbreaking. It was surrealistic, she's just standing there and seconds later she's gunned down by a sniper right in the heart. The way her dad keeps telling her not to die is just so tough to watch, I think that was the part that made me cry, the way he's screaming.
    Women ain't gonna let a thing like sense fuck up their argument. - Chris Rock

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    Elite Member celeb_2006's Avatar
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    That's gruesome, I can handle pictures but live video like that of dying and death is too much even for me.

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    A picture combo shows a screen grab posted on YouTube (L) of Iranian Neda Agha Soltani, who was reportedly killed when hit by a bullet during a protest in Tehran, along with undated pictures of her posted on the Internet on June 22, 2009. A video showing the young woman bleeding to death was put online on June 20 and has since been viewed hundreds of thousands of times around the world.
    (AFP/Internet)

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    Family, friends mourn Neda Agha-Soltan, Iranian woman whose death was caught on video - Los Angeles Times

    Neda Agha-Soltan, 26, 'was a beam of light' and not an activist, friends say. The video footage of her bleeding to death on the street has turned her into an international symbol of the protest movement.
    By Borzou Daragahi

    12:49 PM PDT, June 22, 2009

    Reporting from Tehran The first word came from abroad. An aunt in the United States called her Saturday in a panic. "Don't go out into the streets, Golshad," she told her. "They're killing people."

    The relative proceeded to describe a video, airing on exile television channels that are jammed in Iran, in which a young woman is shown bleeding to death as her companion calls out, "Neda! Neda!"

    A dark premonition swept over Golshad, who asked that her real name not be published. She began calling the cellphone and home number of her friend Neda Agha-Soltan who had gone to the chaotic demonstration with a group of friends, but Neda didn't answer.

    At midnight, as the city continued to smolder, Golshad drove to the Agha-Soltan residence in the eastern Tehran Pars section of the capital.

    As she heard the cries and wails and praising of God reverberating from the house, she crumpled, knowing that her worst fears were true.

    "Neda! Neda!" the 25-year-old cried out. "What will I do?"

    Neda Agha-Soltan, 26, was shot dead Saturday evening near the scene of clashes between pro-government militias and demonstrators who allege rampant vote-count fraud in the reelection of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The jittery cellphone video footage of her bleeding on the street has turned "Neda" into an international symbol of the protest movement that ignited in the aftermath of the June 12 voting. To those who knew and loved Neda, she was far more than an icon. She was a daughter, sister and friend, a music and travel lover, a beautiful young woman in the prime of her life.

    "She was a person full of joy," said her music teacher and close friend Hamid Panahi, who was among the mourners at her family home on Sunday, awaiting word of her burial. "She was a beam of light. I'm so sorry. I was so hopeful for this woman."

    Security forces urged Neda's friends and family not to hold memorial services for her at a mosque and asked them not to speak publicly about her, associates of the family said. Authorities even asked the family to take down the black mourning banners in front of their house, aware of the potent symbol she has become.

    But some insisted on speaking out anyway, hoping to make sure the world would not forget her.Neda Agha-Soltan was born in Tehran, they said, to a father who worked for the government and a mother who was a housewife. They were a family of modest means, part of the country's emerging middle class who built their lives in rapidly developing neighborhoods on the eastern and western outskirts of the city.

    Like many in her neighborhood, Neda was loyal to the country's Islamic roots and traditional values, friends say, but also curious about the outside world, which is easily accessed through satellite television, the Internet and occasional trips abroad.

    The second of three children, she studied Islamic philosophy at a branch of Tehran's Azad University, until deciding to pursue a career in the tourism industry. She took private classes to become a tour guide, including Turkish language courses, friends said, hoping to some day lead groups of Iranians on trips abroad.

    Travel was her passion, and with her friends she saved up enough money for package tours to Dubai, Turkey and Thailand. Two months ago, on a trip to Turkey, she relaxed along the beaches of Antalya, on the Mediterranean coast.

    She loved music, especially Persian pop, and was taking piano classes, according to Panahi, who is in his 50s, and other friends. She was also an accomplished singer, they said.

    But she was never an activist, they added, and she began attending the mass protests only because of a personal sense of outrage over the election results.

    Her parents and others told her it would be dangerous to go to Saturday's march, said Golshad. On Friday, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei had warned in his weekly prayer sermon that demonstrators would be responsible for any violence that broke out. Even Golshad stayed away. At 3:30 the two friends spoke.

    "I told her, 'Neda, don't go,' " she recalled, heaving with sobs.

    But she was as stubborn as she was honest, Golshad said, and she ended up going anyway.

    "She said, 'Don't worry. It's just one bullet and it's over.' "

    "She couldn't stand the injustice of it all," Panahi said. "All she wanted was the proper vote of the people to be counted."

    Her friends say Panahi, Neda and two others were stuck in traffic on Karegar Street, east of Tehran's Azadi Square, on their way to the demonstration sometime after 6:30 p.m. After stepping out of the car to get some fresh air and crane their necks over the jumble of cars, Panahi heard a crack from the distance. Within a blink of the eye, he realized Neda had collapsed to the ground.

    "We were stuck in traffic and we got out and stood to watch, and without her throwing a rock or anything they shot her," he said. "It was just one bullet."

    Blood poured out of the right side of her chest and began bubbling out of her mouth and nose as her lungs filled up.

    "I'm burning, I'm burning!" he recalled her saying, her final words.

    Those nearby gathered around. A doctor tried to help, Panahi said, telling him to put his palm over the wound and apply pressure. A driver coming from the other direction urged the crowd to put her into his car. A frantic search for a hospital followed. They took a wrong turn down a dead end and switched her limp body to another car.

    Along the way, protesters and ordinary people screamed at other drivers to clear a route in the snarled traffic.

    The medical staff made a heroic effort to rush her to the operating room, but it was too late. She was dead by the time they arrived at the emergency room of Shariati Hospital, Panahi said.

    "This is a crime that's not in support of the government," he said. "This is a crime against humanity."

    Iranian authorities have strenuously denied that police were using lethal force to quell the protest. During tours of the riot scene before, during and after the worst of the melee, there were no signs of security officials using guns to quash the protest, which is considered illegal.

    The prosecutor's office has launched an investigation into the killing of "several people" in Saturday's violence and arrested one "armed terrorist," the website of Iran's Press TV broadcaster announced. At least 13 people were killed in Saturday's rioting.

    "Policemen are not authorized to use weapons against people," said Tehran Police Chief Azizollah Rajabzadeh, according to Press TV. "They are trained to only use antiriot tools to keep the people out of harm's way."

    The government has suggested loyalists to the exiled, outlawed opposition group Mujahedin Khalq Organization may bear responsibility for the killings. But family members and friends suspect that zealous pro-government paramilitaries, the Basijis or the group Ansar-e-Hezbollah, might have been responsible. Panahi said witnesses at the scene said the shooter was not a police officer but among a group of plainclothes security officials or militiamen lurking in the area.

    On Sunday at the Agha-Soltan residence, friends and relatives came in droves, weeping and bent over, clutching one another. A steady murmur of sobs and wails emanated from the apartment.

    Mascara streamed down cheeks of the women, some in sweeping black chadors and others in shapely designer mini-coats and sunglasses.

    The men's eyes were sore and bloodshot. Two helped a distraught young man walk along the hallway, one of her two brothers, someone said.

    "She died full of love," Golshad said.

    The relatives and friends piled into minivans for the hour-long trek to Tehran's Beshesht Zahra cemetery, where she was buried. Her loved ones were outraged by the authorities' order not to eulogize her, to loudly sing her praises and mourn her loss. But they were too afraid and distraught to speak out, except for Panahi, who said he had nothing more to lose.

    "They know me," he said. "They know where I am. They can come and get me whenever they want. My time has gone. We have to think about the young people."

    Neda, he said, was smart and loving. She had a mischievous streak, gentling teasing her friends and causing them to laugh. She was passionate about life and meant no one any harm, they said. In the election unrest, friends found in her an unexpected daring, a willingness to take risks for her beliefs.

    "For pursuing her goals, she didn't use rocks or clubs," said Panahi. "She wanted to show with her presence that, 'I'm here. I also voted. And my vote wasn't counted.' It was a very peaceful act of protest, without any violence."

    As to the person or persons responsible for her death, they will not be forgiven, he said. "When they kill an innocent child, this is not justice. This is not religion. In no way is this acceptable," he said. "And I'm certain that the one who shot her will not get a pass from God."

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    Elite Member blissfullyunaware's Avatar
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    Such a waste.
    My goal is to be happy with my life.

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    Elite Member McJag's Avatar
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    Horrible tragedy.
    I didn't start out to collect diamonds, but somehow they just kept piling up.-Mae West

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    Elite Member HWBL's Avatar
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    Very shocking footage of a truly gorgeous young woman dying. Probably
    more shocking is the knowledge that we in the West know and see more
    of what's actually transpiring in the streets of Iran, than the locals.
    Damned infuriating.
    Warren Beatty: actor, director, writer, producer.

    ***** celeb

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    Elite Member Beeyotch's Avatar
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    I saw the pictures. I couldn't watch the video, I just couldn't.

    It's so, so fucked up that things like this, and worse, have to happen for greedy, political bullshit to stop. It's sick.

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    Friend of Gossip Rocks! buttmunch's Avatar
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    Apparently some of those pictures aren't of her but are of another young woman named Neda. Anyway, I watched the video and although it disturbed me I'm glad I saw it.

    [YOUTUBE]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ERizLyvNKfE[/YOUTUBE]

    I wonder if this is the start of the latest Iranian revolution.
    'Those who sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.' Ben Franklin

    "When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross."
    --Sinclair Lewis

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by buttmunch View Post
    [youtube]ERizLyvNKfE[/youtube]

    I wonder if this is the start of the latest Iranian revolution.
    Yea the pictures I posted, which stated it was the girl in the video, kind of doesn't look like her. The 'mosaic' picture kind of looks like the girl, the one with the veil.

    That video is shocking when we see the last moments of a person's life. The way she looks at the person filming and then just bleeds out and the guy's wailing. They were trying to put pressure on her chest I assume it was a chest shot. I heard it created an exit wound on her side and flooded her lungs. To witness your daughter's death like that is too much for me to bear.

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    Friend of Gossip Rocks! buttmunch's Avatar
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    Hopefully she didn't die in vain.
    'Those who sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.' Ben Franklin

    "When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross."
    --Sinclair Lewis

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    Default Was the Neda Agha-Soltan video a Hoax?



    Was the Neda Agha-Soltan video a Hoax?

    It was the shocking video that flashed around the world by the Internet. An at-the-scene moment, taken during the recent Iran election protest demonstrations.
    The Neda Agha-Soltan video, shows a young woman in the street, having been struck down by a government sniper's bullet.
    The video shows her stunned, and collapsing backward to the ground while being let down gently by a man.
    The woman peers sideways at the camera coming towards her, with an perturbing visage of resignation on her face, probably due to massive shock.
    A closeup of her face suddenly reveals rivulets of blood streaming down the side of her mouth and then from her nose, while a doctor attempts to revive her.
    In the background we can hear her friends trying encourage and console her. Heart rending sounds of anguish and cries come shortly thereafter when it is apparent she had succumbed to her injuries.
    Shocking. An indictment of the callous and brute force of the Iranian militia. A tragic and senseless death that shows perfectly how wrong this conflict is.
    And yet, as one gets over the visceral impact of it, past the gut wrenching tragedy, and one begins to reflect . . . does it not have, perhaps, a bit of a "too-perfect-to-be-true" feel to it?
    Much like the infamous Stephen Glass articles written for the New Republic, edgy, highly topical, and on point to cutting edge social events, his articles were just too good not to be true, they went down as smoothly as KoolWhip and Flan.
    But too good they were, and 90% of what he wrote about as an eye-witness reporter, he simply made up.
    Before I continue, I should say that I totally support, and am in awe of, the brave Iranian citizens who defied the threat of lethal force from their Supreme Leader, and who continued to protest for their civil rights against the fraudulent election results that their corrupt regime declared by divine edict.
    But in this case, the video, the backstory - are just too good not to be true. And thus perhaps, just too good to be true.
    Taken with a skeptical eye, the analytical acumen of a Monk, or a Patrick Jane, a point-by-point analysis of this video (and another of the same event), what we actually see, suggests things may not be what they are purported to be.
    And then we might just suspend belief in the easy, consumable story we are being served up by the story's proponents, participants, and the incritical media at large.
    As a disclaimer, I might be completely off base and the story may totally be what it appears to be. If so, I apologize to any who may be offended, however . . . .
    As I see it, there truly are a series of misconnects, non-sequitors, inconsistencies, and not-quite-right factoids surrounding the videos and backstory accompanying them.
    To start off, there is what appears to be two different Nedas (photos of two different women supposedly her), and (currently) a question of any independent source identifying Neda as a real person.
    Then, Neda was said to have been shot by a member of the Basij, an officially sanctioned vigilante organization.
    And yet, as they are not police or military, most Basiji are not permitted to carry firearms except for special requirements and when not in actual combat?
    And then, why would they pick out a non-protesting woman, 1km from where the protests were occuring, just stepping out of a car for a few minutes. And, how did anyone even know it was a Basiji, since it was claimed to be from a unseen sniper on an adjacent building.
    Moving now to the video . . .
    For the massive injury she supposedly sustained, a direct bullet shot to the center of her chest, I have to wonder, where is all the blood that would be coming from her torso or her back onto the ground, it should have been everywhere, including the spot where they are trying to give her CPR, all over their hands and her clothing, and a huge pool on the ground. Yet the only pool of blood appears to be at her feet before she falls down.
    Then, most curious . . .
    Shortly into the video, we see blood coming from her mouth. She is not sputtering it out, or coughing it up, as in an inability to breathe. Rather it appears rapidly and self flowing, and runs down both sides of her mouth, almost exclusively. Her center teeth aren't even stained.
    Shortly thereafter blood appears to pour out her right nostril . . . Looking carefully in the video, it appears that both the mouth and nostril bleed occurs right after a hand is seen pushing up onto or into them.
    These flow patterns appear more to be from a blood bladder timed for rupture when the camera was in the correct position. And the nose bleed appears only after what appears to be a rapid slight-of-hand insertion of blood into her nose.
    Conveniently, an anonymous doctor was on hand to provide the CPR, and to try to save her life, provide credible medical testimony, then disappear from the scene.
    Now I am nitpicking, but this video was supposedly shot with a cellphone videocam. It really seems a bit too high quality for that, more like a DV camcorder.
    And then, there is the almost too perfect backstory of Neda, preceding the shooting and in preparation to go to the protests - her supposed repeated prescient commentary about any danger there, was a flippant "Don't worry. It's just one bullet and it's over", and that "Neda had said that even if she lost her life and got a bullet in her heart, she would carry on".
    Of course, we find out that she was not really political and had no intention of active protesting, only that she was passionate about the honesty of the election process, and wanted to be there to see. Her fiancee said she "studied philosophy, music and tourism, was not political", i.e. principled, but thoroughly inoffensive.
    Then on followup, there is the extreme rapid nature of her burial; no wake, or prefuneral proceedings, no Imam attending, or even pictures/video of that proceeding?
    We now hear unsubstantiated reports that the Iranian government has banned any memorials or gatherings in her name, which conveniently explains why there is a dearth of public involvement in her very public death.
    I don't want to bust anyone's bubble, but there seems to be too many "just right" elements to this story.
    The Iranian government crackdown on foreign media reporting to the rest of the world, and curtailment of phone services and internet access, provides a ripe environment for just this kind of staged tragedy. All news coming from Iran is from amateur on-the-street participants.
    The mass media, starving for news, and implicitly antipathetic toward the Iranian regime for their actions, snatched up this story and ran with it. It was just too good not to be true.
    My oddsmaker assessment, 15% likely true, 85% likely hoax or staged.

    I honestly hope the latter; this video made me cry.

  15. #15
    Friend of Gossip Rocks! buttmunch's Avatar
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    Now I have to watch the video again.

    Ok, watched it. It's real.
    'Those who sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.' Ben Franklin

    "When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross."
    --Sinclair Lewis

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