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(Reuters)   Iran XXXI - The struggle continues   (reuters.com) divider line 1625
    More: Followup  
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4212 clicks; posted to Politics » on 20 Jun 2009 at 4:43 PM (5 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2009-06-20 04:26:58 PM  
Iran protests: live
A week after the disputed poll, Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei led Friday prayers today in an attempt to quell continuing anger at the re-election of president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Follow live updates
The Guardian (UK) (new window)

Inside Iran: Live Blog Twitter Feed
Sky News (UK) (new window)

LATEST STORIES ON IRAN
Reuters (new window)

http://english.aljazeera.net/

http://iran.whyweprotest.net/

Let CNN know what you think of their coverage
http://www.cnn.com/feedback/
 
2009-06-20 04:35:14 PM  
Is this the "Official FARK Iran XXXI" thread?
 
2009-06-20 04:36:01 PM  
camtheman: Is this the "Official FARK Iran XXXI" thread?

yes

/i have no idea
 
2009-06-20 04:38:31 PM  
english.aljazeera.net

Riot police in Iran have used tear gas, water cannon and batons to disperse about 3,000 people attempting to protest over the disputed presidential election of Mahmoud Ahmdinejad, the president.

Witnesses said that dozens of people were hospitalised after being beaten by police and pro-government militia in the capital, Tehran, on Saturday.

"Lots of guards on motorbikes closed in on us and beat us brutally," one protester said.

"As we were running away the Basiji [militia] were waiting in side alleys with batons, but people opened their doors to us trapped in alleys."

Supporters of Mir Hossein Mousavi, a defeated reformist candidate, had planned to stage a rally in the city's Revolutionary Square, but arrived to find their way blocked by police.

A witness told Al Jazeera that police were turning people away.

"The roads were pretty much blocked by the militia, they were out with retractable metal batons. It looked like they were very frantically trying to keep people from the area," he said.

Link (new window)
 
2009-06-20 04:38:42 PM  
Comfortable environment.
 
2009-06-20 04:39:29 PM  
Nico Pitney from HuffPo:

4:18 PM ET -- Roger Cohen's latest. Via reader Maher, it begins with an amazing moment:

The Iranian police commander, in green uniform, walked up Komak Hospital Alley with arms raised and his small unit at his side. "I swear to God," he shouted at the protesters facing him, "I have children, I have a wife, I don't want to beat people. Please go home."


A man at my side threw a rock at him. The commander, unflinching, continued to plead. There were chants of "Join us! Join us!" The unit retreated toward Revolution Street, where vast crowds eddied back and forth confronted by baton-wielding Basij militia and black-clad riot police officers on motorbikes.
 
2009-06-20 04:39:42 PM  
camtheman: Is this the "Official FARK Iran XXXI" thread?

no

/has no idea
 
2009-06-20 04:39:57 PM  
Bucky Katt you have been awesome. Glad to see sponsoring you was the right decision. Thanks.
 
2009-06-20 04:40:49 PM  
If this is the official one, it needs Tats's summary at or near the boobies.
 
2009-06-20 04:41:10 PM  
we're gonna have more Iran threads than superbowls soon.

Iranian Twitter Feed Grid (new window) for those out there that may have missed it
 
2009-06-20 04:42:28 PM  
Tatsuma's summary part one:

Regarding the rumours of Mousavi's arrest in the Guardian: Twitter feeds on the ground are denying that this is what happened, while others do in fact say that he was arrested along all of his staff and that their offices were trashed. So far, we don't know for sure one way or another. It could be propaganda to scare the people, or it could be the truth as well.

A relatively large crowd was present to hear Khameini declared during the prayers, while Reformist leaders called on their supporters to stay home. It was very easy to notice that this crowd was also much older than those we have seen revolting.

There were two sermons, a religious one and a political one.
- The religious sermon itself was rather short and stayed on topic. It concentrated at first on peace and tranquility, leading into the fact that the Revolution was the Will of Allah, that it was sacred and its goals were the goals of Allah. He continued by asking Allah victory over their common enemies, and that people who went against the Revolution were enemies of Allah.

- The policial speech was much longer and disjointed. He started by thanking everyone for the election, then he proceeded to blame the West, claimed that Iran was one of the most democratic country on Earth and that the results were not rigged. He claimed that while yes, there is some corruption in Iran, it's nowhere near the UK MP expenses scandal. He then directly threatened the pro-Reformists leaders, saying that all the violence will be their responsibility. This is all the works of Zionist spies and British radio, and Hillary Clinton was responsible for Waco so Iran is better than America and the West.

There are three major statements to be gleaned from these speech, with further confirmation of a fourth. However boring and long-winded it might have been to the Western ear, it was a major milestone of this revolution, and its implications are far-reaching:

1- His declaration that the Islamic Revolution sacred, that its goals were the goals of Allah and that those who went against it were the enemies of Allah. He then asked Allah victory over the enemies.

This is major. He has in fact painted the entire reformist movement as being anti-Islamic. Due to his position, and the tone that he adopted, this is basically a death sentence delivered to those who will keep on protesting. Not unexpected, but a bold move nonetheless.

2 - He fully supports Ahmadinejad.

This is not a surprise, but he did not back down one inch. He does not give credibility to any of the Reformist claims, and says to either toe the line, or suffer the consequences.

3 - He has put the responsability of violence on the shoulders of the Reformist leaders, and openly declared that he is not going to tolerate it anymore.

This means that the repression from now on will be much more violent, and has more or less openly threatened the leaders of the Revolution that they will pay with their lives if they continue.

4 - As confirmed by Stratfor, the Revolutionary Guard has taken over from the police in all matters of domestic law and order. This effectively means that they are going to start crushing dissent as well, and that they have allied themselves to the regime.

Out of all major developments, this is the biggest one. Will the army stay Neutral, toe the line or side with the Reformists?
 
2009-06-20 04:42:44 PM  
Twitter on the Barricades in Iran: Six Lessons Learned

By NOAM COHEN
Published: June 20, 2009

NY Times (new window)
 
2009-06-20 04:43:03 PM  
TATSUMA'S SUMMARY PART 1

Tatsuma's summary part one:

Regarding the rumours of Mousavi's arrest in the Guardian: Twitter feeds on the ground are denying that this is what happened, while others do in fact say that he was arrested along all of his staff and that their offices were trashed. So far, we don't know for sure one way or another. It could be propaganda to scare the people, or it could be the truth as well.

A relatively large crowd was present to hear Khameini declared during the prayers, while Reformist leaders called on their supporters to stay home. It was very easy to notice that this crowd was also much older than those we have seen revolting.

There were two sermons, a religious one and a political one.
- The religious sermon itself was rather short and stayed on topic. It concentrated at first on peace and tranquility, leading into the fact that the Revolution was the Will of Allah, that it was sacred and its goals were the goals of Allah. He continued by asking Allah victory over their common enemies, and that people who went against the Revolution were enemies of Allah.

- The policial speech was much longer and disjointed. He started by thanking everyone for the election, then he proceeded to blame the West, claimed that Iran was one of the most democratic country on Earth and that the results were not rigged. He claimed that while yes, there is some corruption in Iran, it's nowhere near the UK MP expenses scandal. He then directly threatened the pro-Reformists leaders, saying that all the violence will be their responsibility. This is all the works of Zionist spies and British radio, and Hillary Clinton was responsible for Waco so Iran is better than America and the West.

There are three major statements to be gleaned from these speech, with further confirmation of a fourth. However boring and long-winded it might have been to the Western ear, it was a major milestone of this revolution, and its implications are far-reaching:

1- His declaration that the Islamic Revolution sacred, that its goals were the goals of Allah and that those who went against it were the enemies of Allah. He then asked Allah victory over the enemies.

This is major. He has in fact painted the entire reformist movement as being anti-Islamic. Due to his position, and the tone that he adopted, this is basically a death sentence delivered to those who will keep on protesting. Not unexpected, but a bold move nonetheless.

2 - He fully supports Ahmadinejad.

This is not a surprise, but he did not back down one inch. He does not give credibility to any of the Reformist claims, and says to either toe the line, or suffer the consequences.

3 - He has put the responsability of violence on the shoulders of the Reformist leaders, and openly declared that he is not going to tolerate it anymore.

This means that the repression from now on will be much more violent, and has more or less openly threatened the leaders of the Revolution that they will pay with their lives if they continue.

4 - As confirmed by Stratfor, the Revolutionary Guard has taken over from the police in all matters of domestic law and order. This effectively means that they are going to start crushing dissent as well, and that they have allied themselves to the regime.

Out of all major developments, this is the biggest one. Will the army stay Neutral, toe the line or side with the Reformists?
 
2009-06-20 04:43:24 PM  
Bucky Katt: Twitter on the Barricades in Iran: Six Lessons Learned

By NOAM COHEN
Published: June 20, 2009

NY Times (new window)


http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/21/weekinreview/21cohenweb.html?ref=global-home

[damn]
 
2009-06-20 04:43:39 PM  
Well, getting in on these threads early got me to renew my TF subscription for the first time in years. For everyone out there posting up to date information, I want to salute you guys, it's absolutely amazing.

Considering I'm currently working on a project detailing emergent networks, the way this has played out is fascinating.
 
2009-06-20 04:43:43 PM  
PART 2

Tatsuma's Summary part two:

The big event tomorrow will be the march at 4PM in Tehran. This moment seems as defining as yesterday's Khameini speech was. It also seems that in reaction to being relegated second in the Satans category in Khameini's speech, the U.S. House has decided to pass a resolution supporting the protesters and Obama is expected to endorse it, which will most likely lead to further delegitimization of the Reformist movement.

In other news, things are going from bad to worse for the Basij and they are starting not only to lose ground, but to fear for their safety. There are many reports that most Basij forces are now hiding their identities with masks for fear of reprisal. There are websites being created featuring images and often identities of Basij who have been violently repressing students, calling for actin to be taken against those men. Now the youth have started to hunt Basij as well. In their own neighbourhoods, where they know each others, they are now laying trap to known basij members, using side streets and houses to attack. They strike, and then they hide, only to regroup further, launch another attack and disperse again. Every house is unlocked and they have the tacit support of the population while no help helps the Basij. This might explain why the IRG has been called to take a more active role in the future.

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! They have really stepped-up their efforts in the last day or so. 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 either probable or a persistent rumour. 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. Iran Press News has posted two photographs of men they claim are Hizbullah and Hamas mercenaries. Many different independent reports and video point that way. Even in the last days 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. Iran Press TV also claims to have posted a picture of Hamas mercenaries. 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, it is no confirmed, this is what was reported early on by various twitter feeds considered credible, so do not take this as anything but unconfirmed rumours) 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, GTalk, Yahoo, Aim and ICQ are shut down
* Phone lines, cellphones and SMS are down most of the time
* HTTPS and other such protocols are down most of the time, so are ISPs
* They are trying very hard to close down the Iranian connexion to twitter and giving proxies they control in order to track down people

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 have been in a wait and see mode. As of right now, there are many rumors involving clerics and Ayatollahs meeting in the Holy Shiite city of Qom and planning to overthrow Khameini, as well as reports that some in the Army plotting to overthrow the government, semi-confirmations from credible twitterers, but nothing concrete or substantiated so far. These would be extremely big development, so it's better to treat them with caution.

- Nothing much has happened on this day aside of that. 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.

18th of June - The protests show no signs of slowing down, and the fact that the government has been less violent so far and concentrating on discrediting the protesters instead shows that they are losing grip and painfully aware of all the attention given to what is happening right now, CNN notwithstanding. It's also a worrying step, because the moment they start feeling they are losing grip even more is the moment where they might begin to unleash brutal waves of violence again, much worse than what we've seen so far.

- Iran Human Rights reports that today alone hundreds of members of the opposition and known Reformists have been arrested, some of them tortured in the basements of government buildings.

- There is a (so far) quiet march going on, where all the protesters are dressed in black and mourning those who have died so far. The crowds are estimated to be as big as they have been for the last few days, so that puts them between 1,000,000 and 2,000,000 in Tehran alone.

- Khameini has agreed to a recount of 600 out of the thousands of ballot boxes, but this has been rejected by the opposition, who says that these elections are to be declared null and void, and that new elections have to be rescheduled. Khameini in return rejected this. There are reports that Mousavi went as far as saying that Khameini does not have authority to preside over the state of Iran anymore.

- As a sign of growing tension in the governmental apparatus, fist-fights were said to have broken out in Parliament over who to support, but it seems that the Parliament will ultimately back Ahmadinejad and Khameini to the end. The Interior Ministry has ordered a police investigation into the massacre of 7 civilians by a Basij firing in a crowd. There are also reports of police officers deserting their posts and joining the protesters, while others use their position in the police force as a way to warn protesters from incoming arrests or crack downs. The army is still silent. There are reports that the man who leaked results of the election giving Khatami winner and Ahmadinejad as losing in third position has been killed in a car "accident".

- The State TV has been turned into a full-blown anti-Revolution machine, constantly hammering on how evil the "thugs" who are smashing around private property are. Problem is that those thugs are in fact Basij dressed in green, but IRIB is reporting it as pro-Moussavi supporters. They have also been showing documentaries about the evils of the internet and how the US, UK and Israel are behind the protests. State Radio is not much better, with talking heads calling for the death of those evil thugs destabilizing the country at the behest of external forces. They have also issued false reports that Moussavi was "condeming the rioters".

- The Government has closed Iran to all foreign communication and coverage, according to many reports. It would also seem that the Iranian government has opened an account in the name of Ayatollah Khameini on Twitter. There are reports that senior aides to all reformist candidates have been arrested, but it has yet to be corroborated and this is not the first time we hear such reports.

- According to Reuters, Iranian prosecutors have warned of the death penalty for the rioters who are involved in violence. Islamic cleric have warned that not going to Friday's prayer service makes you worthy of the death penalty. It is unclear yet what isn't worthy of death penalty at this point if you protest against the regime.

- All the violence reported over Iran is now exclusively done by the Basij, Ansar and, if the rumours are true, Hizbullah and Hamas. The police have completely stopped participating in the repression of the population, and both the Army and IRG are standing still and not doing anything. This is good news, but the Basij are sadly not reducing the level of violence they are unleashing on the population, beating up everyone they can get their hands on. It continued all throughout the night and during the day, but due to the mass of people involved it seems that they are restraining themselves when it comes to the mass rallies, preferring to pick isolated targets.

- Universities have cancelled all exams all over the country, and a long list of rebel students was given to all universities and they have to report the students, who are to be arrested on sight.

- There have been a few confirmed cases of people threatened inside the United States for providing proxies for the revolution. Their details were available on the internet so they were passed around pro-Government forces. If you are helping this revolution, be careful to do so as anonymously as you can. It doesn't mean you are risking your life, but it could potentially result in harrassment or vandalism.

19th of June - Supreme Leader Khameini called for Friday Prayers where he was present and delivered the sermons. Reformist leaders and their supporters boycotted it. Supporters of Khameini flooded Tehran from all corners of Iran on Friday, and big post-speech clashes are expected during the night and tomorrow.

- Iranian prosecutors have warned protesters that violence might be punished with the death penalty, according to Reuters. As the Basij, they are cracking down on the population as ever, roaming the streets, vandalizing both pro and anti-Mousavi targets while pretending to be pro-Mousavi forces and trying to crack down on all dissenters.

The revolution lives on. Long live the revolution!

Demands from the protesters

Today, Mousavi gave an important speech. Here's the video, and translation

"I have come due to concerns of current political and social conditions - to defend the rights of the nation. I have come to improve Iran's International relations. I have come to tell the world and return to Iran our pride, our dignity, our future. I have come to bring to Iran a FUTURE of FREEDOM, of HOPE. I have come to represent the poor the helpless the hungry. I have come to be ACCOUNTABLE to you my people and to this world.

"Iran must participate in FAIR elections, it is a matter of national importance. I have come to you because of the corruption in Iran. 25% inflation means IGNORANCE - THIEVING - CORRUPTION - where is the wealth of my nation? What have you done with $300 BILLION in last 4 years - where is the wealth of the nation? The next Government of Iran will be chosen by the people. Why do all our young want to leave this country?"

"I know of no creation who places HIMSELF ahead of 20 million of the nation. We are Muslims - what is happening in Iran's Government is a sin! This Government is not what Imam Khomeini wanted for Iran - I will change all this - This is the SEA of GREEN!!"

This is a major landmark. Here are the 7 demands that are distributed by pamphlets to 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 possible successor of Khomeini, but became marginalized as he adopted what was seen as a too pro-Western, pro-Democracy stance.

Since shortly after beginning of the Revolution, he has been one of the fiercest critics of the Regime. The divide grew wider in 1988 when he had a falling out with Khomeini and was removed from his position as heir to the Supreme Leadership. He is 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
 
2009-06-20 04:44:09 PM  
the lord god: Bucky Katt you have been awesome. Glad to see sponsoring you was the right decision. Thanks.

I'm glad to help any way I can. Thank you.
 
2009-06-20 04:44:26 PM  
birdtongue's list of links:

TV feeds / video
Link (new window); BBC Persian livestream in Farsi, with frequent videos and stills of the protests & related
Link (new window); BBC World News livestream in English, occasional recaps, actual interviews
Link (new window); BBC News livestream in English, occasional recaps [apparently may redirect to NSFW sites w/o Adblock on]
Link (new window); Press TV -- Live Iranian Int'l news station in English; Brussels correspondent Anna Moya wearing green head covering :)
Link (new window); Al-Jazeera English -- Live Iranian Int'l news station in English [requires Realplayer; mirror (new window) doesn't]
Link (new window); youtube channel with footage from citizen journalists in Iran

Text w/ media links
Link (new window); Guardian UK news blog, frequently updated with media and interviews
Link (new window); NY Times news blog, frequently updated with media and interviews from others
Link (new window); Inside of Iran -- a selective aggregate of articles on the situation, both blogger and 'official' mass media
Link (new window); Tehran Bureau: "...a virtual [...] independent news organization." boston.com article (new window) about the lady running it
Link (new window); Juan Cole's blog, collecting a bit of everything, analysis but many sources as well - hosts translation of Khamenei's second speech at Friday noon prayers

Photo-heavy
Link (new window); TehranLive.org -- photos & occasional video of peaceful protests, rioting and crackdown
Link (new window); Picasaweb album -- photos of peaceful protests
Link (new window); flickrstream of peaceful protests, many crowd shots
Link (new window); Iran after the Election -- "blog to act as repository for all media. " offers zips of photos hosted

Basic info
Link (new window); updating blogpost of suspected cointel/spamming Twitter accounts
Link (new window); current local time in Tehran
Link (new window); initial map of protests in Iran -- if I understood correctly, BBC Persia had additional sites :D
Link (new window); information graphic of Iran's political system
Link (new window); write-up of the current situation and relevant history, frequently updated; torrentlist of protest videos

Hope, a terrible and beautiful thing
Link (new window); Poem for the Rooftops [video]
Link (new window); "political" "cartoon"

Action
[http://blog.austinheap.com/2009/06/15/how-to-setup-a-proxy-for-iran-citizens-f o r-windows/] Instructions for setting up a Windows Proxy
[http://blog.austinheap.com/2009/06/15/how-to-setup-a-proxy-for-iran-citizens] Instructions for setting up a Linux Proxy
Link (new window); 'This forum aims to be a secure and reliable way of communication for Iranians and friends. [...] backed by thepiratebay.org, Anonymous, and numerous other internet-friendly forces."

Comment and Analysis
Link (new window); Andrew Sullivan's blog entry "Live-Tweeting the Revolution" -- selective(?) aggregate of tweets, photos of peace and violence
Link (new window); Ryan Mauro's blog, with perspective prior to the elections, quality-looking articles


canaDn [TotalFark] Quote 2009-06-20 06:35:23 AM
Qom clerics back protestors today in statement to Radio Free EuropeLink (new window)
 
2009-06-20 04:44:40 PM  
Argh, you forgot to enable visible html, or whatever it is Tats said to do when posting his stuff.
 
2009-06-20 04:44:45 PM  
is this the one where people get nekkid? It's rated XXX you know
 
2009-06-20 04:45:09 PM  
The FARK Revolutionary Armed Forces:

The 1st Joint Task Conundrum "Combining operations to keep the important bits separate.":
The 101st Chairborne Infantry Division - "Duty, Honor, 127.0.0.1"
58008th SAC Squadron - "The skies are cleared for weird"
The 1337th Fighting Keyboards Mechanized Division - "From dev/null We Stab At Thee"

The 32nd Mechanized Heavy Farktillery Division:
522 Heavy Farktillery Brigade - "Baffle them with brilliance, or bombard them with bullshiat."
51st Farktillery Brigade - "If we run out of shells, we'll start firing the empty pony kegs"

The 69th Counter Psych-Ops Division:
23rd Mostly Unashamed Fark Furry Fireteam - "That's not my screen shot! Anyone got some Newcastle?"
302nd Eye Bleach Brigade - "The 23rd was never here."
301st Internet Propaganda Machine Core - "Bringing you the truth, no matter how bad it hurts."

The 82nd Airwaves Assault Communications Division:
316th IRL Public Affairs Brigade "Repeating the news for those too stupid to watch."
303rd Internet Media Propaganda Regiment: "Bringing you the Truth, no matter how bad it hurts".
140th Character Twit-Militia: "No, we don't get paid, but at least we can tweet about it"

The 1024th Binary Operations Corps:
501st Hacktivists Division - "What's that on our webp... OH GOD, MY EYES! KILL IT WITH FIRE!"
404th Logistical Support Battalion (proxies) - "We Hide With Pride So Others May Be Found"
50th Tactical Torrent Brigade - "We Seed so you don't have to!"
4077th Photoshop Division - "The Few, the Proud, the Digitally Insane"

The 22nd Anti-Personnel Division:
32nd Onion Ring & Bean Dip Chemical Weapons Brigade - "Silent and Deadly"
13th Tinfoil Helmet Brigade - "Semper Fnord"
52nd Mis-Information Troll Brigade - "Water is wet. Response: To some, yes, but that's what they want you to think"

Independent Operational Units:
The 22nd BoB Division. Belligerent Old Bastards - "Shouting at Clouds, Chugging MoM, Get Off the Lawn"
The 81st Carpal Tunnelers, "Depth Chargers"
The 14th Fark Lite Brigade - "Charging In As Soon As It's Green"
The 3rd Digital Peaceniks Division - "You have to listen to us, but at least you don't have to smell us."
The 42nd Anglo-French Silly Walking Python Ballistics Regiment. Motto:"Fetchez la vache"
The 505th F5 Lurkers Squadron - "Filling the skies with the F5"
The 4th Channel Clerical /b/rigade - "The power of the Lulz compels you!"
Farktography Special Detachment f/16 - "Elsinore's Whores"
TotalFark Marine BSOD Squadron -- "Esprit De Core Dump"
Special Investigations: Tatsuma Unit - "Because sleep isn't Kosher."
Fark Corps of Engineers, "Hell's Angles" - "Blowing your F*cking mind"
Copypastian Task Force: "Reposting things that we breaking news 24 hours ago (still 24 hrs AHEAD of CNN)"
Lurking Irregulars Tehran Twitter Division AKA Tube Rats (Motto: "We give a rat's a$$")
The Irregular Internet Militia - "Have blog, will post about it"
Fark Anarchist Brigade: Because orders are for pussies
Special Forces who are simply Anonymous - "Alone, Unarmed, Unafraid"
 
2009-06-20 04:45:17 PM  
I was hoping for Super Thread XXXI: Iran vs. Iran
 
2009-06-20 04:45:18 PM  
Nevermind that this thread is mislabeled XXX, because the last one was XXX.
 
2009-06-20 04:45:21 PM  
It also needs to be stated that
FACEBOOK IS AUTO DELETING ANY STATUS UPDATES RELATED TO IRAN
 
2009-06-20 04:45:34 PM  
I thought this thread should be Green Bay - New England, not Dallas - Pittsburgh.
 
2009-06-20 04:45:36 PM  
It's still going on, so we keep going on.

/It's not news, its' Fark... because Fark is superior
 
2009-06-20 04:46:12 PM  
hmmm, im not much with html and stuff, guess i farked it up that way...damn...sorry....
 
2009-06-20 04:46:33 PM  
Greenlit already? Farkin A.
 
2009-06-20 04:46:47 PM  
Girion47: It also needs to be stated that
FACEBOOK IS AUTO DELETING ANY STATUS UPDATES RELATED TO IRAN


not for me...
 
2009-06-20 04:46:48 PM  
wait, yeah, why is this xxx?
 
2009-06-20 04:46:48 PM  
camtheman: birdtongue's list of links:

Copy and pasting the text and not the HTML w/ links isn't terribly useful.
 
2009-06-20 04:46:50 PM  
Flying Lasagna Monster: I thought this thread should be Green Bay - New England, not Dallas - Pittsburgh.

Nothing should ever be Dallas-Pittsburgh.

/still haven't forgiven Neil O'Donnell
 
2009-06-20 04:46:54 PM  
Girion47: It also needs to be stated that
FACEBOOK IS AUTO DELETING ANY STATUS UPDATES RELATED TO IRAN


Really? Is there a source for that? (Just wonderin')
 
2009-06-20 04:46:58 PM  
Another XXX Thread? What happened to XXXI?
 
2009-06-20 04:47:24 PM  
Hey Mods: change the headline to Super Thread XXXI: Iran vs. Iran


/or at least get the number right
 
2009-06-20 04:47:31 PM  
Khabi715: Nevermind that this thread is mislabeled XXX, because the last one was XXX.

No such thing as too much XXX
 
2009-06-20 04:47:53 PM  
XXX part 2?
 
2009-06-20 04:47:56 PM  
damnit, posting part 2 and formatting it to the best that i could took too much time.

mods, delete one of ours
 
2009-06-20 04:47:59 PM  
nevermind.
 
2009-06-20 04:48:00 PM  
wolvernova: Khabi715: Nevermind that this thread is mislabeled XXX, because the last one was XXX.

No such thing as too much XXX


Vin Diesel approves.
 
2009-06-20 04:48:26 PM  
Doesnt smell new to me. Smells like pepper spray and broken dreams.
 
2009-06-20 04:48:48 PM  
wait what? why is this XXX? Shouldn't it be XXI?

FarkFail?
 
2009-06-20 04:49:00 PM  
Mods can we alter the headline to be Iran XXX part deuce?
 
2009-06-20 04:49:04 PM  
Mods, this is thread XXXI, not XXX. Please change it back to XXXI.
 
2009-06-20 04:49:05 PM  
re-post from previous thread.
Frank du TV: mrshowrules: Frank du TV: lotfan URGENT:Fellow Canadians: email our visa office in Tehran,ask them to open doors to help the wounded: Teranlanoitanretnigcca #iranelection

Don't know how many Canucks we have here. It's been confirmed that Canada's embassy isn't taking wounded.

Would you presume to tell the Canadian Embassy staff to risk their lives by taking in injured protesters? I don't what the situation is on the ground but I assume the Canadian Embassy has limited resources and is focusing on protecting Canadian Nationals. In the absence of a US embassy, you can be sure the Iranian government is closely watching the Canadians.

No, I'm telling any Canadians that might have views on this subject what their government is doing. If the US had an embassy and was doing the same thing I would be calling every relevant government phone number, plus my elected representatives, and telling them that the US should be helping as well.

i have contacted Foreign Affairs FWIW.
and phoning all numbers I can find. Link (new window)
 
2009-06-20 04:49:13 PM  
Well, it's not accurate, but the well-meaning is there. XXX Part II
 
2009-06-20 04:49:23 PM  
heh, XXXI
 
2009-06-20 04:49:27 PM  
XXX, Subsection b
 
2009-06-20 04:49:32 PM  
Girion47: It also needs to be stated that
FACEBOOK IS AUTO DELETING ANY STATUS UPDATES RELATED TO IRAN


This is not, repeat, not happening to me. Is this only something occurring in certain areas, or are you claiming it as a world-wide Facebook phenomenon?
 
2009-06-20 04:49:37 PM  
Yeah, this should be XXXI
 
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