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Thread: Why the US wants to delegitimize the Iranian elections

  1. #16
    Elite Member sputnik's Avatar
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    68% of the population is under 30, and high youth turnout has always favoured reformists. also, the economy is going down the toilet, which usually leads to people hating or at least wanting the current government out.

    the extent of ahmedinejad's oppression (or STFU doctrine, as a friend of mine calls it) has actually knocked the wind out of the fuck america sentiment that was once so popular.

    there is also no evidence to suggest that pre-election polls were concentrated in tehran or cities or did not account for rural polling.

    iran voted overwhelmingly by 70% for the reformist khatami in 1997, a huge landslide victory with a huge turnout .
    since t hen, voting for the reformists has gone down but only because they have been prevented from standing for election.
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    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    ^^Exactly.

    But I think some people should try to keep Iran's election in perspective. Obama had a large amount of public support and momentum heading into the election like Moussavi did. Now, if McCain had suddenly won in a landslide people would be saying the election was stolen, just like in 2000.

    But nobody would be saying that another country delegitimized or destabilized our election. The focus would be on the U.S. government & the GOP, not a foreign nation. So why can't Iran be the same situation? The U.S. has done more than enough illegal bullshit around the world, but the U.S. can't be blamed for EVERY problem that happens in other nations.

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    Elite Member sputnik's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hotncmom View Post
    What would happen if the U.S. stayed out of this, for once?
    it has been fairly quiet, compared to previous administrations. i think they are learning that the US sometimes does more damage by speaking up, even when its intenntions are good.
    hilary clinton gave a very cautious statement shortly after, saying the US would be watching iran closely. and it's not until now that obama was more vocal.
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    Elite Member MohandasKGanja's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sputnik View Post
    it has been fairly quiet, compared to previous administrations. i think they are learning that the US sometimes does more damage by speaking up, even when its intenntions are good.
    hilary clinton gave a very cautious statement shortly after, saying the US would be watching iran closely. and it's not until now that obama was more vocal.
    Yes, from what I've seen official statements from the United States have been pretty muted. If we jumped in on Moussavi's side, the mullah's would immediately say that is proof that all this stuff is being fomented by the United States.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sputnik View Post
    68% of the population is under 30, and high youth turnout has always favoured reformists. also, the economy is going down the toilet, which usually leads to people hating or at least wanting the current government out.

    the extent of ahmedinejad's oppression (or STFU doctrine, as a friend of mine calls it) has actually knocked the wind out of the fuck america sentiment that was once so popular.

    there is also no evidence to suggest that pre-election polls were concentrated in tehran or cities or did not account for rural polling.

    iran voted overwhelmingly by 70% for the reformist khatami in 1997, a huge landslide victory with a huge turnout .
    since t hen, voting for the reformists has gone down but only because they have been prevented from standing for election.


    1988 executions of Iranian political prisoners - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    "This historical mass execution has been documented and recognized by Amnesty International (AI) in a public statement* as well as an in house report. Although Moussavi made his best attempt to avoid the question, students by way of shouting slogans and holding up signs and pictures of those killed in 1988 pushed for answers when they said “At the time, you were the prime minister…what do you have to say now about your silence back then when all this was taking place? How may people did you kill yourself?” Source: http://www.alarabiya.net/views/2009/06/12/75720.html

    "Mousavi government oversaw the mass execution of political opponents in 1988, and say he has been largely silent on human rights violations since. ... They also point to his support for Khomeini's fatwa against Salman Rushdie, the British author of The Satanic Verses." Source: http://www.foreignpolicy.com/story/cms.php?story_id=4921

    "As Iran’s prime minister during the Iranian Revolution’s most formative years (1981-1989) he was a hard-liner closely allied with then-president Ali Khamenei" ... "In that 1981 interview, Mousavi defended the taking and holding of American hostages by Iranian militants for 444 days as serving the revolution’s purpose." ... "Mousavi’s parliamentary followers supported continuing terrorist operations in Lebanon." ... "He had also opposed ending the Iran-Iraq war, claiming that "a large portion of the masses" were indignant over the cease-fire."

    "Mir Hussein Mousavi had a direct role in the arms-for-hostages scandal known as the Iran-Contra affairs that involved secret negotiations between the Reagan administration and the Iranian regime to secure the release of American hostages held by Hezbollah in Lebanon." Source: Mir-Hossein Mousavi - Profile of Iran's Mir-Hossein Mousavi, Radical Turned Reformist



    Quote Originally Posted by kingcap72 View Post
    1) The massive crowds in the street show that Moussavi did have massive public support. That can't be disputed. And the violent reaction to the election results proves that, too.

    2) So, you admit Ahmadinejad is a nutcase, but his bad image is still created, fully or partially, by U.S. propoganda? Well, U.S. propoganda couldn't convince the rest of the world that Iraq was a justified war, but it had the power to demonize Ahmadinejad? And the fact that he's ready to wipe a U.S. ally of the map makes him the U.S.'s problem.

    3) I'll admit the U.S. has helped to destabilize other nation's governments. But to assume that the obvious discontent among many of Iran's citizens is the fault of the U.S. is ridiculous.

    4) And I assume you're joking about Cheney planning 9/11, so I won't even make an issue out of it.
    1-Pro-Mousavi factions aren't the only ones protesting-
    In Tehran, anti-West protests erupt too

    Mon, 15 Jun 2009 18:26:27 GMT

    An Iranian protester holds a sign with the slogan "Down with the USA, UK and France" during a demonstration on June 15, 2009 outside the French embassy in Tehran against European interference in the Islamic Republic's latest election results.

    As pro-Moussavi supporters staged a civil rally in Tehran, demonstrators from the opposite camp have gathered outside the British and French embassies in Tehran.

    Waving Iranian flags and chanting anti-US and British slogans, the demonstrators gathered on Monday to protest what they called western involvement in Iran's internal affairs.

    "We have gathered here to protest a hidden agenda (by Britain and the world), aimed at creating chaos in our country," said a protester in front of the UK embassy.

    "We say to all oppressive governments not to intervene in the future of our country. We will stand in their way with all our strength," said another protestor in front of the French embassy.

    The protests came on the day that Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei ordered an investigation into allegations of election fraud.

    The Leader also urged defeated presidential candidate Mir-Hossein Moussavi to pursue his appeal against Friday's vote result legally.

    Meanwhile, British Foreign Secretary David Miliband said Monday the Tehran government which is dealing with post-election riots "seems to be state violence against its own people in Tehran and elsewhere".

    http://www.presstv.ir/detail.aspx?id=98199&sectionid=351020101


    2-You don't read links, do you? I gave you a source, but you can find hundreds on the net, proving Ahmadinejad's supposed statement about wiping Israel off the map was a deliberate mistranslation. What else we think we know about him will turn out to be patently false?

    3-Really? Is the discontent so obvious, or is that what the msm wants you to believe? As I demonstrated above, GWB asked for and got several hundred million dollars for "regime change" covert ops. And again, pro-Mousavi factions aren't the only ones protesting.

    4-I was only half joking.

  6. #21
    Elite Member sputnik's Avatar
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    Iran's Military Coup

    by Reza Aslan
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    Reza Aslan, a contributor to the Daily Beast, is assistant professor of creative writing at the University of California, Riverside and senior fellow at the Orfalea Center on Global and International Studies at UC Santa Barbara. He is the author of the bestseller No god but God and How to Win a Cosmic War.
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    The Iranian election was bald-faced election fraud, writes The Daily Beast’s Reza Aslan, perpetrated by a powerful intelligence unit known as the Pasdaran.
    Plus, read more insight on Iran's election from other Daily Beast writers.
    So let’s get this straight. We are supposed to believe that Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was reelected in Iran’s presidential election last week by a 2 to 1 margin against his reformist rival Mir Hossein Mousavi. That this deeply unpopular president, whose gross mismanagement of the state budget is widely blamed for Iran’s economy hovering on the edge of total collapse, received approximately the same percentage of votes as Mohammad Khatami, by far Iran’s most popular past president, received in both 1997 and 2001? That Mousavi, whom all independent polls predicted would at the very least take Ahmadinejad into a runoff election, lost not only his main base of support, Tehran, but also his own hometown of Khameneh in East Azerbaijan (which, as any Azeri will tell you, never votes for anyone but its own native sons)…and by a landslide. That we should all take the word of the Interior Ministry, led by a man put in his position by Ahmadinejad himself, a man who called the election for the incumbent before the polls were even officially closed, that the election was a fair representation of the will of the Iranian people.
    Bullshit.
    Such bald-faced election fraud is a totally new phenomenon in Iran, which takes its election process very seriously. This is, after all, the only expression of popular sovereignty that Iranians enjoy. Over and over again, the electorate has defied the will of the clerical regime when it comes to choosing the country’s president: in 1997 and 2001, when 70% of the population rejected the establishment candidate, Ali Akbar Nateq-Nouri, in favor of a completely unknown cleric, Khatami, whose greatest political contribution was as head of Iran’s National Library; and again in 2005 when Iranians rejected Hashemi Rafsanjani—the billionaire former president and the quintessential establishment candidate—to vote instead for a little-known mayor of Tehran named Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who until that time had never run for any political office (Ahmadinejad was appointed mayor of Tehran after his predecessor was charged with corruption).

    There is a genuine fear among these groups that Iran is beginning to resemble Egypt or Pakistan, countries in which the military controls the apparatus of government.


    Indeed, despite what most Americans think, Iran boasts among of the freest and fairest presidential elections in the whole of the Middle East (a pathetic statement, but nevertheless true). Have there been examples of corruption and graft in previous elections? Yes, but not any more so than, say, in American elections. Are Iran’s presidential candidates vetted by an unelected Council of Guardians that filters out anyone it deems “unqualified” for the office? Yes, but this has partly to do with Iran’s strange elections laws, which allow practically anyone with a pulse to run for the office of president. This year, nearly 500 people ran for the post, some of them homeless, a few of them living in insane asylums. (It should be noted that a great many of these 500 candidates were women. The constitution of Iran uses a gender-neutral term to describe those who can run for the office of president, though in a blatantly unconstitutional act, the Council of Guardians, made up exclusively of men, automatically disqualifies all women from the post.) And while the Council’s decisions are obviously politically motivated, the truth is that the four candidates who qualified to run for president this year offered Iranian voters a greater diversity of political views than one sees in most American presidential elections.
    Yet the brazenness with which this presidential election was stolen by Ahmadinejad’s supporters has caught everyone in Iran, even the clerical establishment, by surprise. Indeed, I am convinced that what we are witnessing in Iran is nothing less than a slow moving military coup against the clerical regime itself, led by Iran’s dreaded Revolutionary Guard, or Pasdaran, as the organization is called in Iran. The Pasdaran is a military-intelligence unit that acts independently from the official armed forces. Originally created by Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini to be the supreme leader’s personal militia, the Pasdaran has been increasingly acting like an independent agent over the last decade, one that appears to no longer answer to the current supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
    In 2005, the Pasdaran threw its support behind Ahmadinejad, a former member of the organization, and Ahmadinejad returned the favor by placing high-ranking Pasdaran members in important ministerial and ambassadorial posts in his administration. This was a complete departure from previous presidents—both conservatives and reformists—who went out of their way to keep the military out of the political realm. Today more than one-third of Iran’s parliament, or Majlis, are Pasdaran members, while the organization itself is thought to control nearly 30% of Iran’s economy through its oil, gas, real estate, and construction subsidiaries (the Pasdaran’s net worth is estimated to be between $12 billion and $15 billion).
    It is the Pasdaran that controls Ahmadinejad, not the mullahs. Indeed, it was precisely fear of the Pasdaran’s rising political and economic influence that led to the “anybody but Ahmadinejad” coalition we saw in this election, wherein young, leftist students and popular reformists like Mohammad Khatami joined together with conservative mullahs and "centrists" like Rafsanjani to push back against what they consider to be the rampant militarization of Iranian politics. There is a genuine fear among these groups that Iran is beginning to resemble Egypt or Pakistan, countries in which the military controls the apparatus of government.
    It is difficult to know how this coalition will react to Ahmadinejad’s “victory.” Thus far, their appeals to Ayatollah Khamenei to treat this stolen election as “an act of treason against the state,” which is how both Mousavi and Rafsanjani have described it, have fallen on deaf ears. What is abundantly clear, however, is that the days in which power in Iran rested in the hands of a single individual (the supreme leader) or a single group (the mullahs) are over. For better or worse, the new power base in Iran is the Pasdaran.
    Reza Aslan, a contributor to the Daily Beast, is assistant professor of creative writing at the University of California, Riverside and senior fellow at the Orfalea Center on Global and International Studies at UC Santa Barbara. He is the author of the bestseller No god but Godand How to Win a Cosmic War.


    Iran's Military Coup - The Daily Beast
    I'm open to everything. When you start to criticise the times you live in, your time is over. - Karl Lagerfeld

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    Late last year, Congress agreed to a request from President Bush to fund a major escalation of covert operations against Iran, according to current and former military, intelligence, and congressional sources. These operations, for which the President sought up to four hundred million dollars, were described in a Presidential Finding signed by Bush, and are designed to destabilize the country’s religious leadership.
    ...
    “The Finding was focussed on undermining Iran’s nuclear ambitions and trying to undermine the government through regime change,” a person familiar with its contents said, and involved “working with opposition groups and passing money.”
    Preparing the Battlefield, The New Yorker, July 7, 2008


  8. #23
    Elite Member lalala's Avatar
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    I wont get into the rigged elections debate but concerning media reports it's obvious that you get a different picture if you compare muslim sources - that reported huge pro Ahmadinejad protest this sunday - with the Western ones

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    Elite Member Cali's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sasha View Post
    1-There was no 'massive public support' for Moussavi before the election. Here, I'll link that report for you again:
    * You can find the Ballen-Doherty report here.
    That's not entirely accurate. Nate Silver had a very insightful article about that report- there's more at the site but here are the key points:

    'Unfortunately, while the poll itself may be valid, Ballen and Doherty's characterization of it is misleading. Rather than giving one more confidence in the official results, the poll raises more questions than it resolves.

    Ballen and Doherty wrote in the Post that their poll showed "Ahmadinejad leading by a more than 2 to 1 margin -- greater than his actual apparent margin of victory in Friday's election." But let's look at what their poll (.pdf) actually said:

    Well, indeed, Ahmadinejad has more than twice as much of the vote as his next-closest rival, Mir Hossein Mousavi. But he also only has 33.8 percent of the total vote. Between them, indeed, Ahmadinejad and Mousavi only have 47.4 percent of the vote. Where does the rest of the vote go?
    ...
    Let's accept the poll's contention that about one-third of Iranians -- or about 36 percent of those who were planning to vote -- are hard-core supporters of Mr. Ahmadinejad. There are certainly conservative elements in Iran, and I have no particular reason to doubt this figure. That still leaves Ahmadinejad far short of the margin he would need to carry the election, however.

    But here's the catch. If you have 15 percent of the electorate refusing to say whom they'll vote for, and if probably about half of the 27 percent in the "don't know" category are in fact "soft" refusals who are similarly reluctant to reveal their preferences, those votes won't necessarily have wound up in Mr. Mousavi's column. If these Iranians were too intimidated to reveal their preferences to a pollster, they may also have been too intimidated to vote as they really pleased on Friday.

    The swing votes in Iran are not those blue-haired ladies who take 40 minutes in the ballot booth and call the election clerk over every few minutes. They are rather the perhaps 30 percent of the population who were trying weigh the potential risk to their persons or their standing in the community in voting against Mr. Ahmadinejad, against what might be a relatively small benefit in voting for Mr. Mousavi, whose reforms could be easily vetoed by the Ayatollah. These swing voters may also have been worried that their votes wouldn't have been counted anyway: about one-third of Iranians in the survey didn't believe, didn't say or didn't know whether they expected to have a free and fair election.

    If you take that 30 percent swing vote and add it to Ahmadinejad's 33 percent base, he could have won the election with 63 percent of the vote, as he ostensibly did on Friday. If you take it and add it to Mousavi's column, Ahmadinejad would have gone down to a solid defeat.'
    FiveThirtyEight: Politics Done Right: Polling Predicted Intimidation -- and Not Necessarily Ahmadinejad's Victory

    The reason he's calling for a recount is explained here:

    '12:51 pm: A quick note on the recount: The Supreme Leader has ordered the Guardian Council to begin a recount of the votes from last Friday. Unsurprisingly, Mousavi remains dubious, and is calling for the vote to be thrown out and re-done.

    There are obvious questions about the objectivity of whoever the Guardian Council appoints to handle the re-count; who’s to say they won’t have the exact same people do the re-count as the ones who “counted” them the first time?

    But also, I’m wondering where the ballots have been for the last four days? Have they been kept in a secure location? Has anyone been monitoring them? Were they even kept at all?

    Even the most unbiased counters don’t do any good if the ballots themselves haven’t been preserved. And given the reports of ballot boxes with broken seals and other irregularities that we reported on yesterday, I’m not optimistic…'

    and

    '-The Guardian Council has agreed to a recount, but Mousavi is demanding that the election results be thrown out and the country vote again. The reason is, the Guardian Council consists of Khamenei loyalists, giving opponents reason to believe that the recount will simply be a tactic to stall for time and re-certify Ahmadinejad’s election.'
    Liveblogging updates from Iran continue « niacINsight

    Also, there have been many reports of entire boxes of ballots being destroyed and burned, and other reports that the votes weren't even counted in the first place.

    This is a great summary of all the reasons this election really was stolen:
    Informed Comment: Stealing the Iranian Election

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    Elite Member witchcurlgirl's Avatar
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    The real truth is that it matters little...Ahmadinejad or Moussavi, they both were handpicked by the mullahs, who really rule. No candidate can even run without approval from the mullahs. So what passes as a 'reform' candidate, is really just upholding the status quo. Revolt and revolution against the mullahs will be the only way for the Iranians to get changes in government.

    Obama said earlier on CNBC:

    "The difference between Ahmadinejad and Mousavi in terms of their actual policies may not be as great as has been advertised," Obama told CNBC in an interview. "Either way we are going to be dealing with an Iranian regime that has historically been hostile to the United States."



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    Elite Member MohandasKGanja's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by witchcurlgirl View Post
    The real truth is that it matters little...Ahmadinejad or Moussavi, they both were handpicked by the mullahs, who really rule. No candidate can even run without approval from the mullahs. So what passes as a 'reform' candidate, is really just upholding the status quo. Revolt and revolution against the mullahs will be the only way for the Iranians to get changes in government.

    Obama said earlier on CNBC:

    "The difference between Ahmadinejad and Mousavi in terms of their actual policies may not be as great as has been advertised," Obama told CNBC in an interview. "Either way we are going to be dealing with an Iranian regime that has historically been hostile to the United States."
    I agree that it would have been the case that Moussavi wouldn't have agreed to suspend nuclear enrichment either. I listened to a BBC report last night, though, that said the issue really turns on Khamenei's almost catastrophic decision to get behind Ahmedinejad and announce him the winner long before the polls closed.

    The BBC reporter said that Moussavi would not have been any more likely to give up on nuclear enrichment, but would have placated the United States somewhat by appearing to be much less harsh and confrontational than Ahmedinejad. And he would have just endlessly strung the U.S. and Israel along until they achieved their nuclear goals.

    Now, Khamenei has tied the credibility and fortunes of the mullahs to what appears to be a really screwed-up, and possibly fraudulent, election. And this has given a lot of disaffected Iranian a pretext for expressing bottled-up discontent.

  12. #27
    Elite Member witchcurlgirl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MohandasKGanja View Post
    I agree that it would have been the case that Moussavi wouldn't have agreed to suspend nuclear enrichment either. I listened to a BBC report last night, though, that said the issue really turns on Khamenei's almost catastrophic decision to get behind Ahmedinejad and announce him the winner long before the polls closed.

    The BBC reporter said that Moussavi would not have been any more likely to give up on nuclear enrichment, but would have placated the United States somewhat by appearing to be much less harsh and confrontational than Ahmedinejad. And he would have just endlessly strung the U.S. and Israel along until they achieved their nuclear goals.

    Now, Khamenei has tied the credibility and fortunes of the mullahs to what appears to be a really screwed-up, and possibly fraudulent, election. And this has given a lot of disaffected Iranian a pretext for expressing bottled-up discontent.
    Maybe that will be the start of throwing off a theocracy, and achieving a real democracy.

    I would like to say that Americans can take a lesson from the Iranians on elections, if reports are accurate 85% of the population voted. They put us to shame.

    And the courage of the people that actually are protesting is humbling. We could use some of that spirit here.



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    Elite Member Cali's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MohandasKGanja View Post
    And this has given a lot of disaffected Iranian a pretext for expressing bottled-up discontent.
    Exactly. I think this is sort of a trapped-lighting-in-a-bottle moment. It seems that Ahmadinejad and the clerics and mullahs are really out of step with what the majority of Iranians believe. They want their country to change massively. From 538's article on that same Ballen and Doherty report:
    * 68 percent of respondents said they favoried Iran working with the United States to end the Iraq war;
    * 77 percent favored normalized trade relations with the United States;
    * 76 percent favor having the Supreme Leader be directly elected, rather than undemocratically appointed.
    And on Mr. Ahmadinejad's performance:
    * 45 percent said Ahmadinejad's policies had succeeded in reducing unemployment; 44 percent said they had not succeeded;
    * 28 percent said Ahmadinejad had fulfilled his promise to "put oil money on the tables of the people themselves"; 58 percent said he had not succeeded.

    FiveThirtyEight: Politics Done Right: Polling Predicted Intimidation -- and Not Necessarily Ahmadinejad's Victory
    I've been fascinated the last few days with how this whole thing has unfolded on Twitter, and I've been Twittering with some people from Iran. They are all pretty impressive- mainly university students, they speak English and Farsi, and view the US in a positive light. Many of them have written about liking and respecting Obama, and wanting the US and Americans to help them. They want a better economy, an uncensored internet and to be friends with the world. And they are fully prepared to stage a revolution to get there. Its pretty fascinating.

    ETA: And they just might get a revolution given the sheer number of people involved. This is a photo from today's protest:
    Last edited by Cali; June 16th, 2009 at 05:21 PM.

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    Elite Member sputnik's Avatar
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    i think the real danger is the one pointed out by reza aslan: the fear that iran is becoming egypt, a country where the government is increasingly militarised and authoritarian, and resorts to shameless electoral rigging to get what it wants. that's what explains all the previously warring sectors coming together against ahmedinejad.
    I'm open to everything. When you start to criticise the times you live in, your time is over. - Karl Lagerfeld

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    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sasha View Post
    1-Pro-Mousavi factions aren't the only ones protesting-
    In Tehran, anti-West protests erupt too

    Mon, 15 Jun 2009 18:26:27 GMT

    An Iranian protester holds a sign with the slogan "Down with the USA, UK and France" during a demonstration on June 15, 2009 outside the French embassy in Tehran against European interference in the Islamic Republic's latest election results.

    As pro-Moussavi supporters staged a civil rally in Tehran, demonstrators from the opposite camp have gathered outside the British and French embassies in Tehran.

    Waving Iranian flags and chanting anti-US and British slogans, the demonstrators gathered on Monday to protest what they called western involvement in Iran's internal affairs.

    "We have gathered here to protest a hidden agenda (by Britain and the world), aimed at creating chaos in our country," said a protester in front of the UK embassy.

    "We say to all oppressive governments not to intervene in the future of our country. We will stand in their way with all our strength," said another protestor in front of the French embassy.

    The protests came on the day that Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei ordered an investigation into allegations of election fraud.

    The Leader also urged defeated presidential candidate Mir-Hossein Moussavi to pursue his appeal against Friday's vote result legally.

    Meanwhile, British Foreign Secretary David Miliband said Monday the Tehran government which is dealing with post-election riots "seems to be state violence against its own people in Tehran and elsewhere".

    http://www.presstv.ir/detail.aspx?id=98199&sectionid=351020101


    2-You don't read links, do you? I gave you a source, but you can find hundreds on the net, proving Ahmadinejad's supposed statement about wiping Israel off the map was a deliberate mistranslation. What else we think we know about him will turn out to be patently false?

    3-Really? Is the discontent so obvious, or is that what the msm wants you to believe? As I demonstrated above, GWB asked for and got several hundred million dollars for "regime change" covert ops. And again, pro-Mousavi factions aren't the only ones protesting.

    4-I was only half joking.
    1) So, because Iran, a country known to consistently protest the U.S. & other western nations, has people protesting the U.S. you think that automatically proves that the U.S. rigged the election?

    Not to mention, Iran called on people to turn out in large numbers and add to the debate. They didn't expect the hostile debate that they got, which is why they're cracking down. But, I guess that's the U.S.'s fault too, huh?

    2) I'll admit I didn't read that link at first. And after I read it, I did some other research, like a good Becky, and saw that the quote about 'wiping Israel off the map' wasn't accurate. I'll give you that. But that one quote isn't the sole reason why Ahmadinejad is treated like a nutcase. His own actions and statements have contributed to that.

    3) I have no doubt that the U.S. has been meddling behind the scenes trying to oust Ahmadinejad for the last few years. But if the U.S. was trying to rig Iran's election why did Ahmadinejad win in a landslide? He's the person that the U.S. wants out of power.

    4) Even joking about that halfway sinks any argument that you're making about it.

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