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Author Topic: Iran is burning  (Read 3812 times)
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Eel Snave
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« on: June 14, 2009, 04:03:00 PM »

The pictures coming out of Iran today are astounding.  The streets are flooded with people angry with Ahmadinejad.  It's crazy.
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Moliere
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« Reply #1 on: June 14, 2009, 04:59:57 PM »

no links? Google is too far away for me to search on my own.
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CeeKay
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« Reply #2 on: June 14, 2009, 06:03:57 PM »

here's a CNN slideshow.

I wonder what would happen if the rest of the world refused to recognize Amisalami as president of crazytown....
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Moliere
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« Reply #3 on: June 14, 2009, 06:44:36 PM »

Quote from: CeeKay on June 14, 2009, 06:03:57 PM

here's a CNN slideshow.

You can't stop the signal.
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Eduardo X
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« Reply #4 on: June 14, 2009, 09:20:15 PM »

I hate to be a pessimist, but this is just Terran the pictures are coming from, which has repeatedly been a bastion of liberals. I'd be good to see some change in Iran, but I really doubt this will be the time it happens.
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« Reply #5 on: June 15, 2009, 07:09:21 AM »

I agree that change won't happen this time (but the seed of revolution has been sown), but there have been demonstrations and rioting in several different cities, not just in the capital.
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CeeKay
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« Reply #6 on: June 15, 2009, 07:41:57 AM »

Quote from: Eduardo X on June 14, 2009, 09:20:15 PM

this is just Terran

aren't we all Terran?  Tongue
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Eduardo X
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« Reply #7 on: June 15, 2009, 04:14:55 PM »

Quote from: CeeKay on June 15, 2009, 07:41:57 AM

Quote from: Eduardo X on June 14, 2009, 09:20:15 PM

this is just Terran

aren't we all Terran?  Tongue
Is that a joke or something?
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Moliere
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« Reply #8 on: June 15, 2009, 04:23:17 PM »

Quote from: Eduardo X on June 15, 2009, 04:14:55 PM

Quote from: CeeKay on June 15, 2009, 07:41:57 AM

Quote from: Eduardo X on June 14, 2009, 09:20:15 PM

this is just Terran

aren't we all Terran?  Tongue
Is that a joke or something?

The capital of Iran is spelled Tehran. I think CeeKay was making a joke about Earth usually being referred to as Terra, especially in sci-fi novels. Therefore, we're all Terrans, but not all from Tehran.
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CeeKay
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« Reply #9 on: June 15, 2009, 04:28:31 PM »

Quote from: Moliere on June 15, 2009, 04:23:17 PM

Quote from: Eduardo X on June 15, 2009, 04:14:55 PM

Quote from: CeeKay on June 15, 2009, 07:41:57 AM

Quote from: Eduardo X on June 14, 2009, 09:20:15 PM

this is just Terran

aren't we all Terran?  Tongue
Is that a joke or something?

The capital of Iran is spelled Tehran. I think CeeKay was making a joke about Earth usually being referred to as Terra, especially in sci-fi novels. Therefore, we're all Terrans, but not all from Tehran.

this.
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Eduardo X
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« Reply #10 on: June 15, 2009, 05:10:34 PM »

Quote from: CeeKay on June 15, 2009, 04:28:31 PM

Quote from: Moliere on June 15, 2009, 04:23:17 PM

Quote from: Eduardo X on June 15, 2009, 04:14:55 PM

Quote from: CeeKay on June 15, 2009, 07:41:57 AM

Quote from: Eduardo X on June 14, 2009, 09:20:15 PM

this is just Terran

aren't we all Terran?  Tongue
Is that a joke or something?

The capital of Iran is spelled Tehran. I think CeeKay was making a joke about Earth usually being referred to as Terra, especially in sci-fi novels. Therefore, we're all Terrans, but not all from Tehran.

this.
1) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Romanization_of_Persian
2) I still think the joke was bad. I thought CeeKay was only allowed to spam the PC forum?
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CeeKay
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« Reply #11 on: June 15, 2009, 05:32:27 PM »

Quote from: Eduardo X on June 15, 2009, 05:10:34 PM


I have no clue where your point may be in that article.  I only see Tehran mentioned once, and it's not the way you spelled it.
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Razgon
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« Reply #12 on: June 15, 2009, 08:18:51 PM »

Quote from: CeeKay on June 15, 2009, 05:32:27 PM

Quote from: Eduardo X on June 15, 2009, 05:10:34 PM


I have no clue where your point may be in that article.  I only see Tehran mentioned once, and it's not the way you spelled it.

Its probably a joke ;-)
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Moliere
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« Reply #13 on: June 15, 2009, 08:35:21 PM »

More pictures of post election Iran.
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CeeKay
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« Reply #14 on: June 15, 2009, 09:47:36 PM »

Quote from: Razgon on June 15, 2009, 08:18:51 PM

Quote from: CeeKay on June 15, 2009, 05:32:27 PM

Quote from: Eduardo X on June 15, 2009, 05:10:34 PM


I have no clue where your point may be in that article.  I only see Tehran mentioned once, and it's not the way you spelled it.

Its probably a joke ;-)

Kinda like free elections in Iran?  Tongue
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Larraque
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« Reply #15 on: June 15, 2009, 11:05:47 PM »



Man. What did the fridge ever do to deserve that?
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Moliere
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« Reply #16 on: June 15, 2009, 11:50:33 PM »

More pictures with captions courtesy of the Boston Globe.

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VynlSol
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« Reply #17 on: June 16, 2009, 12:22:45 AM »

Those folks in Los Angeles are nuts!
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CeeKay
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« Reply #18 on: June 16, 2009, 12:36:44 AM »

is that woman going for a high five?
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« Reply #19 on: June 16, 2009, 06:33:21 AM »

Maybe not in that picture above, but from looking at other polling photos, you know... there's some pretty attractive looking women in Iran.  Shame to cover them up.   icon_wink
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Biyobi
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« Reply #20 on: June 17, 2009, 04:40:15 AM »

Quote from: Turtle on June 16, 2009, 06:33:21 AM

Maybe not in that picture above, but from looking at other polling photos, you know... there's some pretty attractive looking women in Iran.  Shame to cover them up.   icon_wink

There is a fairly large Persian community in L.A. and I will confirm that they can definitely bring the hawt. nod
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Blackjack
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« Reply #21 on: June 17, 2009, 03:16:01 PM »

Kidding aside, it's interesting how Internet social networking and news tools are making it next to impossible for the government there to "control" the news coverage of the upheavals:

Iran's Protests: Why Twitter Is the Medium of the Movement
http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,1905125,00.html?xid=rss-topstories-cnnpartner
Quote
The U.S. State Department doesn't usually take an interest in the maintenance schedules of dotcom start-ups. But over the weekend, officials there reached out to Twitter and asked them to delay a network upgrade that was scheduled for Monday night. The reason? To protect the interests of Iranians using the service to protest the presidential election that took place on June 12. Twitter moved the upgrade to 2 p.m. P.T. Tuesday afternoon — or 1:30 a.m. Tehran time.

Iran opposition defiant as media grip tightened
http://www.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/meast/06/17/iran.elections.rallies/index.html

=============
I had an Iranian roommate for a semester in early 1984 in my sophomore year of college in Virginia, named "Toofan." He was a good guy, very funny, very protective of his friends. I had a problem with another suite mate ripping me off on international phone bills (this was pre-Skype  icon_razz), and while I was generally a wuss about it, Toofan once got into such an argument with the other suite mate that the the latter actually tore off the door knob to a room to continue the argument.  icon_eek

Toofan and I only had one argument. Once he and a friend of his helped me move a few things up to our 3rd floor campus apartment. Maybe I should've offered something in thanks, but I just thanked them for the help. Later I found out they had helped themselves to a couple of beers I had received for Christmas (a 6-pack, but I wasn't much of a beer drinker at the time).

I remember washing dishes and having a hollering argument with him about it ("You should've asked" "You should have offered!" etc.). For some reason (I did lots of things at 19 that made no sense), I threw a manual can opener at him. He threw it back at me. (not at each other's skulls, thankfully). Also thankfully, this did not escalate, as I was probably washing some sharp knives at the time.  icon_razz Otherwise, he was great, probably the best roommate during my couple years living on campus.
« Last Edit: June 17, 2009, 03:23:11 PM by Blackjack » Logged

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Moliere
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« Reply #22 on: June 17, 2009, 04:23:04 PM »

Quote from: Blackjack on June 17, 2009, 03:16:01 PM

Kidding aside, it's interesting how Internet social networking and news tools are making it next to impossible for the government there to "control" the news coverage of the upheavals

Quote from: Moliere on June 14, 2009, 06:44:36 PM

You can't stop the signal.
  icon_wink

I think the video taping of Rodney King getting an LAPD beat down should be considered the start of this age of citizens turning the spotlight back on Big Brother. It's only going to accelerate as technology becomes cheaper, smaller, and better.
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« Reply #23 on: June 18, 2009, 05:30:46 PM »

FARK has a poster who's got a brilliant synopsis of events.

http://www.fark.com/cgi/comments.pl?IDLink=4455489

Quote
Very worrying report: Supreme Leader Khameini has called for Friday Prayers where he will be present. There are fears that the IRG is going to have a massive presence and that this might be a trap, but on the other hand not attending makes the reformists enemies of Islam and worthy of the death penalty. There are also reports that other Reformist candidate Karoubi and his entire party leadership were arrested.

Nothing much has happened in the last hours aside of that. There are reports of clerics and ayatollahs meeting in the holy Shiite city of Qom in order to plan to overthrow Khameini as supreme leader, as well as a more and more pro-dissenters stance from the army, but we have nothing substantiated so far. I will yet update this tomorrow, adding further information about various other groups operating in Iran right now and relevant to this revolution.

I really am trying to cram the most relevant information and speculation only. Everything is updated as events unfold, especially the timeline and what will happen in the future. If you want to link this, here is the website, updated as the situation changes:

https://sites.google.com/site/tatsumairanupdate/

For those wondering, here is the current time in Iran

All twitter posts about the army being involved are false as I am writing this Warning, new twitter feeds are most likely government members trying to spread misinformation, ignore them! Also, there is a handful of good twitter feeds, but please do not publicize their usernames, they are in enough danger as it is and they don't need more publiclity. Those in the know will c/p their entries. Major timeline overhaul, including what has unfolded in the last few hours.

Suppression of Dissent - The Players

Currently, there are either two or three maybe four groups who are suppressing the students on the ground that you'll read about throughout this thread:


1. The Basij
2. Ansar Hizbullah (which I will refer to as Ansar)
3. Lebanese Hizbullah (Unconfirmed but highly probable. Der Spiegel, based on a Voice of America report, says that 5,000 Hizbullah fighters are currently in Iran masquerading as riot police, confirming the independent reports. Many different independent reports and video point that way. Even in the last hours other independent twitter feeds have declared witnessing thugs beating on people while shouting in Arabic; I will refer to them as Hizbullah)
4. Lebanese Hamas (unconfirmed and doubtful. This rumour has been cropping up all day, with some of the most twitter feeds saying they had visual confirmation of Lebanese Hamas fighters along with Lebanese Hizbullah member. Take with a grain of salt, but it has been mentioned often enough, by sources generally always right, that it deserves of a mention here. I will refer to them as Hamas)

- The Basij are your regular paramilitary organization. They are the armed hand of the clerics. The Basij are a legal group, officially a student union, and are legally under direct orders of the Revolutionary Guard. Their main raison d'être is to quell dissent. They are the ones who go and crack skulls, force people to participate in pro-regime demonstrations, and generally try to stop any demonstrations from even starting. They are located throughout the country, in every mosque, every university, every social club you can think of. They function in a way very similar to the brownshirts.

They were the ones who first started the crackdown after the election, but it wasn't enough. While they are violent and repressive, they are still Persian and attacking fellow citizens. A beating is one thing, mass killings another.

- Another group was working with them, whose members are even more extreme, is Ansar. There is a lot of cross-membership between the Basij and Ansar, though not all are members of the other group and vice-versa. The vast majority of Ansar are Persians (either Basij or ex-military), though a lot of Arab recruits come from Lebanon and train with them under supervision of the Revolutionary Guard. They are not functioning under a legal umbrella, they are considered a vigilante group, but they pledge loyalty directly to the Supreme Leader and most people believe that they are under his control. They are currently helping the Basij to control the riots, but due to the fact that they are Persians and in lower numbers than the Basij, they are not that active.

- The Lebanese Hizbullah is a direct offshoot (and under direct control) of the Iranian Hizbullah (itself under direct control of the Supreme Leader) and cooperates closely with Ansar though Ansar occupies itself only with Iran's domestic policies, while Hizbullah occupies itself only with Iran's foreign policy unless there is a crisis like right now. However, Hizbullah has been called to stop violent riots in Iran in the past.

(the following paragraph includes some speculation based on reports from ground zero) Hizbullah flew in a lot of their members in Iran, most likely a good deal even before the elections in case there were trouble. They are the ones who speak Arabs and are unleashing the biggest level of violence on the Persians so far. Another wave arrived recently and there is chatter that yet another wave of Hizbullah reinforcements are coming in from Lebanon as we speak. According to Iranians on the ground, they are the ones riding motorcycles, beating men women and children indiscriminately and firing live ammunitions at students.

- The Lebanese Hamas is a branch of Hamas set-up in Lebanon. Like Hamas in Gaza, Hamas in Lebanon is directly under the orders of the Hamas council of Damascus known as Majlis al-Shurah. While it is surprising to hear that they might be involved, and as I said take these reports with a grain of salt until we get more confirmations, it is not illogical either. Iran has become the main benefactor of Hamas in the last years, branching out from only supporting Islamic Jihad. They now provide Hamas with the bulk of their budget, with advanced weaponry and training by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard. Not only do Hamas own them a lot, but if the Republic falls, Hamas finds itself in dire trouble. It is very likely that, at the call of Iran, the Majlis al-Shura would have decided to send fighters from their Lebanese Hamas branch along with Hizbullah fighters if it was requested of them.

Other Players

Decided to create this section in order to give a wider range of explanations for people who might not be too familiar with Iran's internal politics and structure.

The Police

Iran's police is not dissimilar to your run-of-the-mill law enforcement in other dictatorships, with the difference that they are not generally as brutal and repressive. This is because the Basij are generally in charge of these activities, meaning that Iranian policemen generally concentrate more on the law and order aspect of Iranian daily life.

Today, it is thought that the Iranian police numbers close to 60,000 members, in contrast with up to a million Basij members. This is one of the reasons why we hear much more about the plainclothes militia than we do about the police right now, the other being that the Basij and Ansar are much more willing to violently assault their fellow citizens than even the regular police force. This is not as much a testament to the decency of your average police officers as much as a damning report of what the Basij and Ansar thugs are like.

There are also subdivisions and extra-legal forces attached to the police force. The major subdivision would be the riot police (So-called Unit 110) who are actually much more violent than regular police officers, but also in much, much smaller numbers. There is also VEVAK, the secret police. Very little is known and confirmed about them, except their extreme tactics include murder, kidnapping and torture.

The Army

In Iran, there are actually two armies. They are divided between Artesh and Pasdaran.

Artesh is the regular Military apparatus of the Republic. Their numbers, including reservists, go up to a million members, but only half of them have received anything more than very basic training. As it is often the case in police states, there is very little known and confirmed about the structure of the Army itself.

They were created prior to the Iranian Revolution, in fact this army has existed in one form or another, and is a continuation, for more than 2,500 years. This is not as impressive as it sounds, however, as they often underwent drastic changes, there is no real links between the current incarnations, and the top echelons were most often purged when new rulers took power. In fact, in the last 100 years, those purges happened between two or three times, depending on the count, the last time centered around the time of the Islamic revolution, when most generals were forced to flee, killed, or killed while in exile.

Artesh took the brunt of the military casualties during the Iran-Iraq war, the army is considered to very nationalist and not extremely religious, which explains why they have declared their neutrality and refusal to repress the situation, as they see their purpose to defend the Iranian population.

Everyone agrees they will be the ultimate key to this Revolution when they finally decide to take a side, or alternatively force the Pasdaran to stay on the sidelines with them.

Pasdaran, also known as Iranian Revolutionary Guard

The Iranian Ground forces (I will focus on them, as the Navy and Airforce are currently irrelevant, will update if the situation changes) have been estimated between 100,000 and 130,000 units total. As always, truth most likely resides somewhere in the middle. They are, much like the Basij and Ansar, subservient directly to the Supreme Leader, and ideologically created in the spirit of defending the Islamic Revolution ideals and Republic, not Iran per se. They also control the Basij.

They are a child of the revolution, and they are more geared toward guerilla warfare than they are for military engagements. They are also the force responsible for training the various terrorist groups financed and supported by the Iranian government. They are fanatically devoted to the Republic through intense indoctrination.

The elite troops are called Quds. They are considered the elite of the elite, but they only number between 2000-6000, although rumours say that they are twice or three time as big. They are, however, rumours and quite unlikely.

Ultimately, the Revolutionary Council and the Supreme Leader will call on them if they think they are on the verge of losing power, however it is unlikely that the army will just stay on the sidelines if this happens.

The Guardian Council, formerly known as The Revolutionary Council

The Revolutionary Council was created by Ayatollah Khomeini shortly before the Iranian Revolution. Since then, they have sat as the real authority of Iran. The Guardian Council is made up of 12 Ayatollahs, and they are the ones who dictate every little facet of Iranian life, making the position of President mostly irrelevant, as they do not take any major decisions without first asking permission from Khameini and his cronies. They do not have any qualms about hiding this, as the head of the Council is called "Supreme Leader".

The very goal of this revolution has become not only to elect Moussavi as President, but also elect Grand Ayatollah Montazeri as Supreme Leader. GA Montazeri has been calling for a separation of Mosque and State, and transferring most powers of the Supreme Leader to the President, including control of the Armed Forces.

The Grand Ayatollahs

The Grand Ayatollahs are Shiite clerics who first attained the position of Ayatollahs and then, through their knowledge of Islamic Jurisprudence, attained a supreme position and are regarded as the most important voice in Shia Islam today. They center around the holy Shiite city of Qom, though some live outside Iran.


What will happen

Unless the army decides to intervene in the favor of the Council and to stop the early beginnings of the new Revolution, Ansar & Hizbullah members will be the ones doing the brunt of the killing and repression with Basij as a support while also protecting government buildings and try to do crowd control. The police seems to have for the most part disbanded in centers like Tehran according to all reports, including international media. If the police decides to come back, they will focus less on protection and crowd control, so the Basij will start to crack more skulls).

Currently, this is what is happening. Regarding the repression of dissent.

As for the political scene, the majority of Grand Ayatollahs who expressed an opinion on this have sided with the protesters/against the results of the election. They are GA Ardebili, GA Montazeri, GA Shirazi, GA Golpaygani and GA Sanei. The only Grand Ayatollah who has sided in favor of the election results is Khameini, who is also the Supreme Leader of the Revolutionary Council, and the facto ruler of Iran.

Timeline
note: I built this through both articles and twitter feeds, so I do not claim that this is a 100% factually correct representation of reality, but this is the general narrative.

14th of June - While the previous day had been witness to some protests, they were for the most part peaceful. However, as time grew the protests turned more and more violent. When the first spontaneous riots erupted, the first wave of violence was unleashed. The Iranian Riot Police was called in to support the regular police officers controlling the protests, and shortly after the Basij also took the scene, moving from a passive to active role of repression. The RP concentrated mostly around public buildings and streets while the Basij took position around student groups, especiallly universities.

- As things got more out of hand, more and more Basij troops were called in, as the police started dispersing. The riot police are less inclined (or, rather I should say the Basij are more inclined) to use violence so they retreated and leaving the place to the Basij. The repressive forces concentrated their assault mostly around the main Iranian universities, while the riot police were concentrating on protecting various government buildings such as the Interior Ministry. At least two people had been killed already.

- On the telecommunication front, this is when we started to hear more and more from twitters while videos were being freely updated to youtube (while youtube started to delete the more violent ones a few hours later). This is also the moment where the government realized what was happening, and ordered for the internet, phone lines and cellphones to be cut off, in order to avoid people communicating with the outside world.

late 14th, early 15th of June - This is the second wave of violent repression. At this point, violent riots had spread all over the main cities of Iran. The violence against citizens was not only the fruit of the Basij anymore, but also came from Ansar Hizbullah members. This is the point where firearms started being used. There were reports of a few murders but it was mostly fired in the air or on walls in order to scare away protesters in University dorms. It's also around the same time that the first reports and videos of an important number of non-Persian thugs shouting in Arabic and violently beating people with chains, clubs and electric batons (similar to cattle prods), which led to many speculating that lebanese Hizbullah members were now in Iran. Der Spiegel, through Voice of America, later claimed that 5000 Hizbullah fighters were passing off as Riot Police, validating the claims of many independent sources and twitter feeds.

- Universities have been the hotbed of protests, serving as a hub of anti-government demonstrations and preparations. 120 teachers from the Sharid University resigned in protest over the election results. Perfectly away of this, the Basij, Ansar and possibly Hizbullah members concentrated their attacks on University Dorms all over the country, storming them and beating students, destroying everything, especially computers.

- The end of the second wave came right before the beginning of the current manifestation. Things were getting quieter with only sporadic reports of dissenters being assaulted. Important to note: at this time. the Supreme Leader authorized the plainclothes militias to use live ammunition against the crowd if things were to get out of hands. By the end of the first two waves of protests, hundreds of people had been arrested.

midday, 15th of June - This brings us to the third wave, which just began around 12:30PM for those of us on the East Coast. Plainclothes militia opened fire on civilians protesting peacefully. Possibly up to 2 million protesters took the street. Chaos erupted in the streets, with reports of fighting all over Tehran and spreading over Iran as the news circulated. Pictures of people shot, some to death, finally surfaced and were published in the mainstream media. Violent and murderous repression has started. At least a twenty people had been killed at this by the end of the 15th of June.

- There is a major national crackdown on students, especially those with connections to the outside world going on right now. Students are fighting back in some areas. Telephones are being bugged and everyone twittering and sending videos outside of Iran are being rounded up. ISPs were shut down, government hackers are threatening people who twitter, and some of them have vanished in the last 24 hours.

- Eventually, the people started to fight back. First, they took over and burned down a Basij base, killing its commander. Later, a Basij shot a young man in the face in front of their HQ, at which point a policeman went to confront them. The Basij beat the policeman, at which point students stormed the compound, throwing molotov cocktails, burning it to the ground.

- During the night, the police entered certain neighbourhood to arrest public servants and force them to appear at tomorrow's pro-Ahmadinejad manifestation, but the people went out in the street and forced them out of their neighbourhoods. The Basij have kept on storming dorms. So far the reports are conflicting, but it appears that the death toll could be as high as 40 for the protesters, with two dead on the side of the repressive militias. This is the end of the third wave.

early 16th of June - Supporters of Moussavi have a manifestation planned for 5pm, Tehran time. Roughly the same number or more is expected to attend. People are dressed in black and told to protest silently.

- The pro-Ahmadinejad crowd however are planning a counter-demonstration at the very same place the supporters are supposed to gather at 3pm. Most agree that basically they are simply going to gather for a confrontation. Rumours are that they are taking position in buildings next to the parade and in bunkers to attack. Basij from all over the country are moving to Tehran and supporters are being bused from all over the country. A major showdown is expected to unfold.

- The crackdown on people using telecommunication is as strong as ever. Anyone with a laptop, camera or cellphone is attacked in the street by plainclothes militias. Tehran hotels are under lockdown to prevent the members of the foreign press not yet expulsed from reporting what is happening.

- As for the Iranian Government and different branches, there are rumours that many Army Generals have been arrested for plotting a Coup d'État, but this is still speculation at this point. The Supreme Leader has also called for a 10-day inquiry into the claims of fraud, but it has been widely dismissed as cosmetic. Moussavi and his supporters have rejected this, claiming that they want new elections. Khameini is now using the armed Basij as his own bodyguards, hundreds of them are surround him and his residence to protect from attempted assassinations. Ahmadinejad himself is in Russia right now, for a planned visit, and tries to pretend that everything is good as usual.

midday 16th of June to early 17th of June - The fourth wave of violence has started, and was expected to flare up very soon. It surprisingly was quite mild. Pro-Moussavi supporters said that there were even more people today protesting against the regime, though raw numbers are hard to get. If this is true, it means there are more than 2M protesters in the street right now. They are dressed in black and protesting silently and without violence so far. Other reports that only 250,000 were in the street, possibly scared by the Basij and propaganda.

- The Basij, surprisingly, did not attacking the march itself but rather assaulted dorms again. It looks like they are using the march as a diversion. In Tehran proper, 2000 Basij are waiting to storm the male dorm, and they are backed by IRG helicopters, which seems to send the message that the IRG has broken from their undeclared neutrality toward tacitely supporting the Regime.

- The crackdown on telecommunications is starting to suffocate all of Iran. As of now:

* Gmail and GTalk are shut down
* Yahoo is shut down
* AIM is most likely shut down
* Phone lines are down most of the time
* HTTPS and other such protocols are down most of the time
* Iranian ISPs have been shut down
* They are trying very hard to close down the Iranian connexion to twitter and giving proxies they control in order to track down people
* Cellphones and SMS are shut down

People are also receiving phone calls from the government saying "We know you were in the protests".

Night fell on Iran, and the Basij were roaming, attacking passerbys at random. They had also surrounded dorms and stormed them once again.

17th of June - With the end of the fourth wave of violence, we are currently in a wait and see mode. As of right now, there are many rumors involving clerics, Ayatollahs and the Army plotting to overthrow the government, semi-confirmations from credible twitterers, but nothing concrete so far. These would be extremely big development, so it's better to treat them with caution.

There was another mostly peaceful march, with around 500,000 protesters in the street. The Basij and others are still roaming around and beating on the population, as well as dressing in green, destroying buildings and trying to pin the blame on the protesters in order to make them look like a bunch of thugs.

There have been more than a hundred people arrested in their hospital beds and taken to prison. The number of prisoners right now is estimated between 1,000 and 10,000; possibly more. The Basij are now laying traps into hospitals themselves, trying to snatch up protesters there. There are also reports that they are taking dead bodies before they are identified, stuffing them in vans and leaving to undisclosed locations. Doctors have been setting up outside clinics and fighting back in order to stop the Basij from doing what they do.

The revolution lives on. Long live the revolution!

Demands from the protesters

1. Dismissal of Khamenei for not being a fair leader
2. Dismissal of Ahmadinejad for his illegal acts
3. Temporary appointment of Ayatollah Montazeri as the Supreme Leader
4. Recognition of Mousavi as the President
5. Forming the Cabinet by Mousavi to prepare for revising the Constitution
6. unconditional and immediate release of all political prisoners
7. Dissolution of all organs of repression, public or secret.

Who is Grand Ayatollah Montazeri?

Ayatollah Montazeri is a pro-Democracy, pro-Human Rights Ayatollah who was at one point on the short list of possible successors of Khomeini, but became marginalized as he adopted what was seen as a too pro-Western, pro-Democracy stance.

Since the beginning of the Revolution, he has been one of the fiercest critics of the Regime, and one of the biggest proponents of women and civil rights for ALL Iranians, including much-maligned minorities like the Baha'is. In fact he goes further than the protections afforded to them under Sharia.

He is also a big critic of Ahmadinejad and has been seen for years as the best hope for Iran if he ever was to come to power, something that was unthinkable a mere week ago.

He has also come out with a statement saying that policemen who beat on protesters and follow orders will not be forgiven under Islam, and that even if the government cuts the lines of communication with the outside world, that it was too late and the truth was getting out

Links

For further information on the Basij, Global Security has a good article about the history of the Basij.

CNN has a good article where eyewitnesses describe the type of violence usually unleashed by the Basij.

Here is another good article from GS again giving more background information on the ruthless Ansar thugs.

BBC profile of Grand Ayatollah Montazeri

important: The Iranian government is looking for dissident twitterers, so if you have an account, change your location and timezone to tehran!

regarding the supposed numbers received by all three candidates giving Moussavi the winner and Ahmadinejad third with 7M votes: The only confirmation is an Iranian journalist. We don't have any external data confirming those numbers. 7M for Ahmadinejad seems quite low, so treat this as an unsubstantiated rumour for the moment
« Last Edit: June 18, 2009, 05:35:20 PM by DragonFyre » Logged
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« Reply #24 on: June 18, 2009, 05:38:38 PM »

I also recently found this Tweet Grid which has a pretty chilling final post from someone going by "Change For Iran"

Quote
have to leave, it's not safe here anymore! wish us luck!
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« Reply #25 on: June 18, 2009, 08:34:29 PM »

While things like Twitter are pretty good in places like this, its also something where you REALLY have to be carefull about what to believe. Its still the internet, and there are still a billion morons out there, who has no greater joy than making a fool out of everyone else, making them believe in their words.

On-topic: its very confusing about the whole situation...sometimes I wish things really WERE like the movies, at least its easy to see whos the bad guys there
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« Reply #26 on: June 19, 2009, 05:18:24 PM »

The US has been drumming up support for war in Iran for years, and there have been reports that the CIA and special ops were operating in Iran for a while now. The CIA used to directly fund opposition in countries that were not US allies (i.e. Nicaragua, El Salvador, etc.) but has since given opposition funding duties over to the National Endowment for Democracy (Georgia, Ukraine, etc.). There's a lot of reason to suspect the CIA has a hand in what is happening in Iran now, especially as the CIA has a long history of meddling in Iran, and can in ways be blamed for the rise of the Ayatollahs. So, for me, it is hard to believe any of the news coming out of Iran, be it the main news media, leftist sources who have in the past supported Iran for being anti-imperialist, bloggers and the like who obviously would like a free Iran, or Iran's media.

Which leaves me with no idea what the fuck is going on. All I know is that Iran is ruled by tyrants, and that they should be ousted. I worry that they'd be replaced with a pro-western idiot like Saakashvili, but who is to say what will happen? I also know that Iran is brutal, and that we can't imagine the repression people there are suffering. DragonFyre's post says at least 60 people are dead, and that's tragic.

All I can do is say I support the Iranian people in their struggle.
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« Reply #27 on: June 20, 2009, 11:53:31 PM »

My concern is the intention of U.S corporate news making it seem like Iran is the only country with this kind of thing happening in order to pump up the American public to support a war in Iran, which is of course Israel's goal. Not a surprise that U.S corporate media is painting the Iranian government as pure evil and lobbying groups are leaning on the politicians they have in their pocket to pressure the Obama administration to step in. I hope Obama does the right thing and stays the fuck out of their business, it's not America's job to fix every other country's internal issues. Especially the internal issues that prove no existential threat to us.
« Last Edit: June 20, 2009, 11:58:12 PM by Ridah » Logged

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« Reply #28 on: June 20, 2009, 11:59:21 PM »

And yes, Persian women are smoking hot and tend to be either doctors or lawyers. Which is why I'm dating a hot Persian lawyer  icon_cool
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« Reply #29 on: June 21, 2009, 03:37:19 AM »

Quote from: Ridah on June 20, 2009, 11:53:31 PM

My concern is the intention of U.S corporate news making it seem like Iran is the only country with this kind of thing happening in order to pump up the American public to support a war in Iran, which is of course Israel's goal.

Quote from: Ridah on June 20, 2009, 11:53:31 PM

Not a surprise that U.S corporate media is painting the Iranian government as pure evil and lobbying groups are leaning on the politicians they have in their pocket to pressure the Obama administration to step in.

And could you please explain how the Iranian government is NOT pure evil? Has the American government been the one making Iranian students use twitter to explain the government brutality they're facing, often for doing nothing more than protesting quietly and peacefully?
« Last Edit: June 21, 2009, 03:40:03 AM by cheeba » Logged
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« Reply #30 on: June 22, 2009, 04:51:41 AM »

I've seen the U.S show the same brutality, it just doesn't get plastered on the media.
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« Reply #31 on: June 22, 2009, 05:03:47 AM »

US corporate- nay, international news outlets are playing catchup to the people twittering shooting video and blogging, etc. who are actually in the shit over there. I'm not sure it would have blown up as intensely in the news were it otherwise.
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« Reply #32 on: June 22, 2009, 05:23:06 AM »

Quote from: Ridah on June 22, 2009, 04:51:41 AM

I've seen the U.S show the same brutality, it just doesn't get plastered on the media.
The US isn't very brutal internally. If it were, it'd be plastered on the media.
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« Reply #33 on: June 22, 2009, 06:23:15 AM »

Quote from: Ridah on June 22, 2009, 04:51:41 AM

I've seen the U.S show the same brutality, it just doesn't get plastered on the media.
Oh come on now. This is a total non-sentence. If you've got actual examples or evidence or anything you can cite which shows the US - the US now, not some asshole rogue cop or something - using the "same brutality" then please feel free to post them. Otherwise you're just a guy with a tinfoil hat.
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« Reply #34 on: June 22, 2009, 12:54:16 PM »

Quote from: cheeba on June 22, 2009, 06:23:15 AM

Quote from: Ridah on June 22, 2009, 04:51:41 AM

I've seen the U.S show the same brutality, it just doesn't get plastered on the media.
Oh come on now. This is a total non-sentence. If you've got actual examples or evidence or anything you can cite which shows the US - the US now, not some asshole rogue cop or something - using the "same brutality" then please feel free to post them. Otherwise you're just a guy with a tinfoil hat.
I don't want to be condescending, but I bet you can think of examples quicker than Ridah posts them. Abu Ghraib, extraordinary rendition, Contras, Vietnam, etc.

But it is never internal, and a lot of times is brutal using a proxy so as to keep the US's hands clean.
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« Reply #35 on: June 22, 2009, 01:01:55 PM »

Quote from: cheeba on June 21, 2009, 03:37:19 AM

And could you please explain how the Iranian government is NOT pure evil?

This is the kind of demonization that makes real discourse impossible.
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« Reply #36 on: June 22, 2009, 03:05:25 PM »

Quote from: Eduardo X on June 22, 2009, 12:54:16 PM

Quote from: cheeba on June 22, 2009, 06:23:15 AM

Quote from: Ridah on June 22, 2009, 04:51:41 AM

I've seen the U.S show the same brutality, it just doesn't get plastered on the media.
Oh come on now. This is a total non-sentence. If you've got actual examples or evidence or anything you can cite which shows the US - the US now, not some asshole rogue cop or something - using the "same brutality" then please feel free to post them. Otherwise you're just a guy with a tinfoil hat.
I don't want to be condescending, but I bet you can think of examples quicker than Ridah posts them. Abu Ghraib, extraordinary rendition, Contras, Vietnam, etc.

But it is never internal, and a lot of times is brutal using a proxy so as to keep the US's hands clean.

Japanese internment camps were internal.
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« Reply #37 on: June 22, 2009, 03:12:09 PM »

As despicable as the camps were, they weren't brutal. They were more like POW camps.

If they were like Gulag, it'd be an even worse mark on our nation's history.

I do think we can compare a lot of internal police brutality to what's happening to Iran. Rodney King, Lt. Jon Burge, Amadou Diallo, etc. But as it isn't associated with repression (like the Contras were), at least not since the 60s and 70s, it's hard to compare. And even the state sanctioned killings (Wounded Knee, Fred Hampton) were pretty quickly and widely condemned.
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« Reply #38 on: June 22, 2009, 04:47:40 PM »

Quote from: Eduardo X on June 22, 2009, 03:12:09 PM

I do think we can compare a lot of internal police brutality to what's happening to Iran. Rodney King, Lt. Jon Burge, Amadou Diallo, etc. But as it isn't associated with repression (like the Contras were), at least not since the 60s and 70s, it's hard to compare. And even the state sanctioned killings (Wounded Knee, Fred Hampton) were pretty quickly and widely condemned.
All of those were isolated cases though. They are nothing compared to a police state banning, expelling, and detaining all media, feeding disinformation to its entire citizens through state-run television, using some weird citizen brigade death-squad kinda thing to attack its own people, all because they want to protect the results of a nationally rigged election. Are there incidents of brutality in the US? Of course. Has the US government made many mistakes? Sure. But you gotta take a deep dive off the loony end to compare the US with the systematic repression of the Iranian government.
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« Reply #39 on: June 22, 2009, 05:14:32 PM »

Indeed, cheeba. Unless you look at US foreign policy.

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