Friday, June 30, 2006

Dress Code is Free in Isalmic Republic

"May the Lord Ahuramazda Protect Iran from a hostile army, from famine and from Lie" - King Darius the Great.

"From ages five to twenty years Persian boys are trained in horsemanship, swordsmanship, archery, and telling the truth" - (Herodotus, 1.136).

"They consider telling lies more disgraceful than anything else, and, next to that, owing money. There are many reasons for their horror of debt, but the chief is their conviction that a man who owes money is bound also to tell lies." (Herodotus)

Many years later, the despisal for lies and liars was replaced by Taqieh. Made up by Shiite clergy, it gives Shiite Muslims a free hand to lie when and if, it is convenient.

I remember how proud I felt when the headmistress of my primary school in Iran, stood up for me and said "Potkin may do many things but he never lies". In Iran of today, telling the truth is no longer a virtue, it is a sign of naivity. Meet the Iranians that come from Iran these days and you soon realise that to lie, for them is a symbol of shrewdness. Call them a liar and they take no offense, yet they get offended if they are referred to as a porter(hamAl) or a construction worker(amaleh). How absurd!

And here is an example of an Islamic Republic statesman lying through his teeth. Esfandiar Rahim Moshayi, is the first deputy of the president of the Islamic Republic and the chief of tourism. In an interview with the Turkish daily, Sabah, and in reply to Alif Korpa's question on the compulsory Islamic dress code in Iran, he says "In Iran, you are free to choose to wear the Hejab or otherwise" He goes on further to say "This is purely a personal choice, no official will tell you off, if you are not wearing one. I reiterate there is no obligation regarding the Hejab"

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Frontline Club Debate

Went to what turned out to be a lively debate at the Frontline Club last night. The speakers were Simon Tisdall of the Guardian, whom I have been commenting on in my last post, and Ali Ansari, from St. Andrews University. Jon Snow, the Channel4 News presenter, was supposed to be chairing the meeting only; but he turned out to defend the Islamic Republic with more vigour than anyone else on the panel or in the audience.

My purpose for being there was to tell these journalists to stop justifying the Islamic Republic and to show the audience that what these journalists write and say is not the gospel truth at all.

It was a casual style event, all panel members talked briefly first before questions were asked. Simon Tisdall repeated the sort of things he has been writing about Ahmadi-Nejad's popularity and said how much fun he had in the 10 days he spent in Iran recently; his first visit since the revolution.

Ali Ansari, talked about the nature of Iran's economy. He described it as a trading economy and how sanctions so far have affected Iran, and of course he tried to plug his latest book, which was also on display for sale next to the panel.

The first question from the floor was about Iranian people's feelings towards the Russians and how they ranked next to the Brits and Americans in the wrongs they had done to Iran.

The next question was more in tune with what my purpose for being there was. It was posed by a good friend of mine, Arash. He asked Tisdall about the validity of his conclusion on popularity of Ahmadi-Nejad, given that one of Tisdall's sources was Nasser Hadian, a childhood friend of Ahmadi-Nejad. Arash finished his question by asking "do you not think such reporting legitimises the Islamic government and weakens the opposition?"

Jon Snow thought he can score a point against Arash, and asked Arash when he was last in Iran. I think Snow was sure that because of Arash's good command of English, the answer would be "never" or " a long time ago". In fact, Arash, was in Iran only last December, making a documentary on the execution of the underage Iranian girl, Atefeh Rajabi who was abused by the officials in Neka, North Iran. The documentary will be shown on 27th July, on BBC2. Snow was taken back a bit, he didn't expect Arash to have been to Iran so recently and let Tisdall answer Arash's question.

Tisdall answered "Yes, I hear Hadian and Ahamdi-Nejad used to play football together" and rather than answering the question, he went on to say that apparently Ahmadi-Nejad was a good footballer and from what he hears had Ahmadi-Nejad played for the Iranian team in the World Cup, Iran may not have done so bad. He then mentioned how in the 10 days he was in Iran, he spoke to many other "ordinary" Iranians too. I couldn't stay silent and interrupted him "Hardly a scientific poll!". Tisdall said "Yes I had no access to any polls"
I was amazed at the audacity of this guy and the way he answered Arash's question. In my amazement and anger, I lost the thread of what was said next, but somehow Jon Snow brought up what he claimed to have witnessed when he was in Sanandaj, just before or after the revolution, about buckets of blood with bits of fingers and nails, allegedly from victims of torture under the Shah.

Next as sheer bad luck would have it, Jon Snow passed the microphone to Lida Sheybani. I know this girl and I know what a liability her and her father can be. She knows very little about Iran and simply lives in the past and on another planet. I cringed waiting for her to speak, and my gut feelings were right. As usual she started promoting her father,
"This is my father [pointing to her father sitting next to her], Mr. Sheybani, he was the managing director of Iran's Steel plant before the revolution, he is the most honest man I have ever known, he would not even park on a single yellow line on a Saturday....."

Oh my God! how embarassing! Most of all I felt sorry for Reza Pahlavi, probably the most level headed and sensible opposition member I know with his focus on the future, and yet he has to suffer by having the likes of Sheybani who claim to support him but in reality portray such a negative image of him every where they go. Lida Sheybani went on and on taking up valuable time. This was no place for a historic argument, it was futile and would never get us anywhere, but we had something on Tisdall and his warped reporting, thats what we should have concentrated on, the present, not get involved in never ending historic arguments.

I kept waving my hand until Snow noticed me, I had to bring back the focus on the Islamic Republic. We were not there to discuss the Shah, it was the present that mattered, so I let go of my original more polished question, took the gloves off and said "You can try your best to justify the Islamic Republic by quoting your dubious sources but at the end of the day, the Islamic Republic is a religious apartheid, where the rights of a citizen is determined by his religion, why are you Western journalists so hell bent on legitimising this religious apartheid. You would not have dared to do the same with the racial apartheid in South Africa". Then I pointed my question to Jon Snow, "You mention what you saw in Sanandaj, what about the massacre of Iranian political prisoners in 1988, when 18000 political prisoners were massacred including pregnant women, teenagers and even children. Why didn't you report that? and now that those responsible for that massacre are in Ahmadi-Nejad's cabinet you are trying to legitimise him?"

Jon Snow replied, "well how long are we going to go back in history about who the Islamic regime has killed? "

What a cheeck I thought! "You talk about who the Shah has killed and go back in history and I cant talk about the murders committed by the Islamic Republic, when the murderers are in the present government?" I snapped back at Snow.

Ansari came to Jon Snow's help, and tried to plug his book again "I wrote about it in one of my books".

I can't remember what Tisdall said or didn't say, but Snow then went on talking slowly "...and we will also talk about the Iranian opposition based in Paris, a nasty cult that has been responsible for the murder of many Iranians..." and as he was saying all this, he kept giving me a dirty glance. I think he wanted to check if I was an MKO supporter. But I looked straight at him while he was describing the MKO and nodded my head in agreement with him. He saw me nodding and realised another exit avenue for him was closed. Infact the MKO was never mentioned again.

The debate became more lively when another member of the audience stood up to ask a question. She was from the American embassy. I forget what her exact job title was, but you can imagine what happened next. All the anti-American feelings of the European intellectuals in the room poured out on her with the support of the panel. One Iranian guy in the audience, sitting in front of her, was ever so concerned as to who will actually get the $75 Million US promised aid to the Iranian opposition.

During the discussion on the nuclear power, I asked the panel, if the Iranian people were able to freely debate the pros and cons of having nuclear power. Jon Snow, who was originally supposed to only chair the panel, quickly said "Yes they can. "
"I spoke to many Iranians when I was there, who were against nuclear power. One interesting old guy at Mossadigh's house told me Ahmadi-Nejad was right to stand up to the Americans but he also told me he was against nuclear power" Snow went on to say.

"So what? thats just another anecdote! Can the Iranian people have a meeting like this or march in the street against nuclear power?" I confronted his claim again.

"There has been articles in Iranian newspapers against Iran having nuclear power." Jon Snow replied.

"Which one for example?" I asked again.
"Shargh for instance." Snow said.
"How do you know, you cant read Persian" I told him. Bit of a weak reply from me here I must say and that let him off the hook.
"I am not an idiot, I have people translate it for me" Snow said and moved on to another question.

Another Iranian university lecturer in the audience described why it makes no economic sense for Iran to invest in Nuclear power.

A Muslim Arab woman in the audience with Islamic headscarf took the microphone next. She said, "I don't have a question as such but want to make a comment" Nevertheless she still asked a question from the panel "Why America don't want Iran to have nuclear power? why, because it is a Muslim country?"
No one said anything, so I jumped in. "Do you feel comfortable about a non-accountable government having nuclear power?"
"What?" she asked.
So I repeated again slowly. "Islamic Republic is not an accountible government. Do you not feel uncomfortable about nuclear power in the hands of a non-accountable government?"
She stood still again, looking dazed and confused. Poor woman, I don't think she knew what accountable government was. Jon Snow came to her aid though, and asked me "What about Pakistan which has nuclear weapons, does Pakistan have an accountable government?"
"I am most certainly against Pakistan having nuclear weapons" I said.

Snow then took a couple of more questions from the floor but perhaps the best question came right at the end from Shahran Tabari.
"Perhaps you don't mean it but I am telling you how your reports give the impression that you are justifying the Islamic regime. You talk about how kind and hospitable Iranians are towards you when you go to Iran, yet you seem to think that a 5% democracy is good enough for us. By doing so you are degrading and humiliating the Iranian people. Why isn't what is good for you not good for us?"
I had to clap for her as many others did too. She spoke out exactly how I felt about all this.

Both Tisdall and Snow tried to forget Shahran Tabari's question and instead answer the other ones, but the audience reminded them that Shahran Tabari's question was not answered.

Jon Snow said he did not mean to justify the Iranian regime in any way, shape or form. Tisdall instead tried to use the old argument "Compared to the neighbouring countries..."
I have had enough of this silly argument, so again I interrupted him "why should we be compared with the neighbouring countries, we have had three revolutions in the last 100 years for democracy, we deserve democracy..."
Arash sitting next to me, also asked "what about Turkey and Armenia, they are neighbouring countries too, they have more democracy don't they?"
Shahran's question was never really answered though. It is still unclear to me if Snow and Tisdall thought a 5% democracy is good enough for us Iranians.

After the meeting was over, I tried to talk to the panel on a one to one basis but there were people before me in my way. One old Iranian guy was asking Ansari to sign his book and as the book was being autographed, he asked Ansari "Are you related to Mr. Hooshang Ansari?"

"no he is the brother of the Ansari who cheated Reza Pahlavi out of millions." I answered instead.
Ansari laughed and said "I wish my family had benefitted from such a sum you talk about". I had to laugh at the expression on the old guy's face though, it was too late, he had bought the book and had it autographed already.

I finally managed to ask Jon Snow face to face, "Is it possible to have an equivalent of CND in Iran?"

"of course not!" He said shaking his head.

And with that he left me with more contempt than I first had for him. Privately, he admits to me that the nuclear issue can not be debated freely in Iran, yet publicly in front of the audience he sings another tune.

I remembered when Jane Kokan told me how Snow had got drunk in a Channel4 party after the documentary "Iran under Cover" was shown. He had shouted at her saying "because of your program we might never be able to travel to Iran again!"
Jane Kokan had replied "Well whose fault would that be Jon, me or a repressive regime?"
To which Snow in his drunkard state could only reply "F**k off!"

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Ahmadi-Nejad's Popularity and Iran Experts

A fair person has to, at times, take his hat off to his adversary's skills. I consider myself a fair person; in sports for example, I am always happy to admire my opponent's skills and strengths and commend him on his outstanding abilities. I also have to admire the Islamic Republic at times. Most of all, for their ability to manipulate the Western media, and particularly the "experts" or the "Iran Analysts".

Shortly after I wrote about MacAskill and Tisdall's article in the Guardian who had claimed Ahmadi-Nejad's popularity to have soared to 70%, I received a link to another similar claim from yet another so-called Iran expert. See Genuinely Popular by Meir Javedanfar.

At the bottom of the article Meir is introduced as:
"...Middle East Analyst and the Director or the Middle East Economic and Political Analysis Company, He has been quoted and interviewed by the BBC, Radio Holland International, Haaretz Newspaper and the Boston Globe as well as a number of other newspapers and Radio stations. For rights to quote this article"

Vow! This sounds impressive, he is after all the director of an impressive sounding think tank. I have always been a firm believer of getting the right information, whether it is to one's taste and liking or otherwise. If one doesn't have the right information, then its like playing chess blindfolded without knowing where the pieces are.

So I sent the email below to Meir:

"Dear Meir,

Did you make these observations when you were in Iran? How many of Ahmadi-Nejad's rural tours did you accompany? Did you mingle with his audience to see what they are really saying or did you interview them as an official reporter?

Other than the above what kind of nationwide opinion polls did you conduct or have access to or did you surmise these conclusions as general observations?"

To his credit Meir, replied quickly:
"Salam Jenab Potkin,

First of all, many thanks for your email. Its great to communicate with fellow Iranians over such important matters.
You are right, it is difficult to get census information, but here is one which I thought is very useful:,,1801867,00.html

Regarding Ahmadinejad?s tours, I used articles in Iranian and foreign press. We may not like him, but many people outside Tehran believe in him.

In terms of empirical data, again, I used information from foreign and Iranian sources. I also talk to people who travel back and forth to Iran.

Unfortunately I can?t even get to the crowd (although I would love to), because I live in Israel.

Sepaz gozaram

Meir Javedanfar
Middle East Analyst
The Middle East. Analysed.

:) So his main source again was the MacAskil and Tisdal article! Well when I was in university one of my lecturers used to say if you copy more than 10% from a source it is plagiarism but if you copy more than 90% then it is a student project. It seems that "Iran Experts" also operate on similar principles to the student projects that my university lecturer referred to.

The Islamic Republic think tank units expertly target the Western newspaper journalists who have the potential of opinion making. Through their "officials" they feed these "experts" with their "sources" of information, the poor average Guardian reader, then reads these articles admiring the skills of these "analysts" in obtaining their information and putting the pieces together. The myth then propagates that so and so is an "expert" on Iran and his writings become gospel for the snotty intellectuals whose opinions are made based on what they read and not on their experiences or God forbid mingling with the common man on the streets.

One really comical "Iran Expert" is Christopher de Bellaigue, the author of "in the rose gardens of martyrs". I actually came across someone's blog in Australia who was ever so impressed by de Bellaigue's Iran credentials. According to the Australian blogger, Christopher de Bellaigue, was fluent in Persian and even had an Iranian wife. My God, you must be an expert on Iran if you have an Iranian wife :))

Now lets examine the reality, here is one article by this "Iran Expert". It was titled "Iran's mystery man" and published in "The New York Review of Books"

Move on to section III of the above link, when the "Iran expert" describes his trip to Tabriz in June. The second line reads "..Visiting Ahmaghieh, a poor suburb, I got my first inkling ..."

Ahmaghieh?? Someone fluent in Persian would quickly jump up reading this. Ahmagh in Persian means idiot. Ahmaghieh would be a district full of idiots. The similarity between Ahmagh and Ahmad is in fact a popular way of lampooning the Iranian president in the many thousands of jokes about him. But lets give our "Iran Expert" the benefit of the doubt, it could have been a typo. I make lots of typo mistakes while trying to update my blog in between my work and I don't like criticising someone for something that I myself am guilty of.

So lets read on, surely de Bellaigue would have corrected his typo, after all he says he has been to this district, surely he can not be an armchair analyst who sits in his office and receives the official lines to disseminate across the world as fact. But no! again in the same line he mentions
"..Ahmaghieh has a population of about 60,000 people..." and then in the next paragraph
"..In Ahmaghieh, I met two young men.." and again few paragraphs further down:
"..After seeing the film, many in Ahmaghieh decided to vote for him.." and again:
"...He was an educated man, about 40 years old, and he told me that he had been working in Ahmaghieh for the past 18 years.." and so on.

Well some "source" had a sense of humour and must have been having a laugh with our "Iran expert". Go back to the very first paragraph of de Bellaigue's article, there is one element of truth there however:
"I know of no Iranian active in public life or in journalism, let alone a foreign diplomat or reporter, who predicted Ahmadinejad's win."

So even according to de Bellaigue, his sources and the "experts" can and often are wrong. As comical as all this may sound there is one underlying tragic reality. These "Iran Experts" who are pumped up by these official "sources" credit the legitimacy of Iran's Islamic government. That is no laughing matter.

Sun and Lion Verboten!

When Hanif Leylabi left a comment on my blog describing how some of his relatives in Germany were told by the German Gestapo police they were not allowed to take the Sun and Lion flags inside the stadium, I got really curious. I contacted some of the people I knew in Germany and made more enquiries. Well here is the evidence of what Hanif was saying. In clear Vaterland Deutsch "Sun and Lion Verboten" notices at the stadium entrance.
It looks like the NPD Nazi fans of the SS-lamic Republic still have a lot of sympathisers within the German police force.

But not to worry, here is one umbrella and one flag that got past the NPD police.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Gathering in Tehran for the Release of Mossavi Khoeini

He is Mossavi Khoeini, being taken away by Islamic Republic agents. This was one of the unforgettable pictures when the regime showed its heavy hand on a small gathering of women in Tehran, two weeks ago. Since this picture was taken, the whereabouts of Mossavi Khoeini is still unknown. It is heartbreaking to imagine what he is suffering now at the hands of his interrogators.

If there was one reformist with real guts, who stood up for all of the Iranian dissidents, it was Mossavi Khoeini. He was the one MP who did what he could to make a difference for Iran's political prisoners.

If there was a just cause for protest, Mossavi Khoeini, was there, I mean physically there. He is a man admired by many across the political spectrum of Iranian dissidents, and now he is suffering the same fate as many of those he often tried to help.

Last night's gathering to call for his release brought many of Iran's dissidents together. This is how unity comes about, not in endless Paltalk chatrooms or in Hotel conferences outside Iran, but on the ground.

The participants sang the unofficial national anthem, "Ey Iran" and then read Mossavi Khoeini's very last speech.

Imagine what a big moral boost it would have been for those in the gathering if the Swiss government had arrested judge Mortezavi last week, when the Candian government asked the Swiss authorities to do so for the murder of the Canadian photo-journalist, Ziba Kazemi.

Instead, the Swiss government let Mortezavi go back to Tehran untroubled after representing a UN panel on Human Rights! "tofoo bar tow ey charkhe gardoon tofoo!"

There were no protests from the European Left for the presence of an evil judge who has caused so much death and misery in Iran. After all, Judge Mortezavi in the eyes of the European Left is probably an anti-imperialist. Had it been President Bush, they would have organized themselves fully for widespread protests.

Shirin Ebadi didn't attend the gathering last night but sent a message of solidarity. Lets hope next time Ebadi gets an international audience, she mentions the plight of Mossavi Khoeini too and not just the Guantanamo prisoners.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Calls for the Arrest of Mortezavi in Geneva

Well the news was beyond belief, it was like putting salt on the wounds of children who have lost their mothers and fathers, good men and women beaten to death at the hands of or by the orders of Iran's notorious prosecutor-general, Saeed Mortezavi. Words fail me, it was just a slap on the face of justice. It is as if Dr. Josef Mengele led a delegation of children's Rights to the UN. This was the shameful news :

"Saeed Mortazavi this week led Iran's delegation in Geneva to the first session of the United Nation's newly reconfigured human rights panel on Monday"

But thankfully, finally the calls for his removal are growing. The Canadian government have expressed outrage at Mr. Mortazavi's presence in Geneva. A group of dissidents still languishing in Iranian jails have written a letter to the United Nations secretary-general, Kofi Annan. Amir Abbas (Siavash) Fakhravar, an ex-political prisoner and Iranian dissident, now in Washington, is co-ordinating more protests from the victims of Mortezavi.

The Canadian foreign minister, Peter MacKay, said his nation was "disgusted" that Mr. Mortezavi would show his face in Geneva, and that the decision to include him in Iran's delegation to the human rights council "demonstrates the Government of Iran's complete contempt for internationally recognized principles of human rights."

He went even further, noting that the information Ottawa has compiled on Mr. Mortazavi's role in the murder of Kazemi was being shared with the government of Switzerland, hinting that Canada may be rallying support not only for international isolation of the Iranian judge but possibly for his arrest by Swiss authorities.

Joe Stork, deputy director of Middle East and North Africa division for Human Rights Watch also echoed MacKay saying "Iran's decision to send Mortazavi to Geneva demonstrates utter contempt for human rights and for the new council, Iran has just confirmed why U.N. members refused to elect it to the Human Rights Council."

Lynn Tehini, of the journalist's rights group Reporters Without Borders, told AFP:
"His presence at the Human Rights Council is really shocking. It is an insult to the victims of repression in Iran," .

Today Stefan Hashemi, the son of murdered Iranian born Canadian photo journalist, Ziba Kazemi, also called for the arrest of Mortezavi in Geneva.

Islamic Republic's other delegation member Jamal Karimi-Rad, the clerical regime's Minister of Justice. A ruthless judge who was assistant prosecutor of the Revolutionary Court, Prosecutor General and the General Prosecutor of the Revolutionary Court for Kurdistan, Zanjan and Qazvin provinces respectively, as well as the prosecutor of the Judges' Disciplinary Commission. He has held key senior positions in the campaign to crackdown on the Iranian people, including thousands of executions especially of political prisoners.

Mortezavi's arrest will be a great boost for the Iranian dissidents and the pro-democracy movement in Iran. It will show the people of Iran that they can win!

For any protests to reach that critical mass, it is essential for the people to gain enough confidence. People must believe they can win in order to come out in the streets in their millions.

A unique opportunity has come about for regime change in Iran, handed on a plate by the sheer stupidity or sheer arrogance of the clerics in Iran. It is better than invasion, better than sanctions, better than useless expensive conferences of ineffective diaspora opposition who come out with umpteen joint declarations but nothing afterwards, better than stirring up ethnic unrest, better than supporting the "reformists" whose intention is just re-packaging of the Islamic Republic, it is the immediate arrest of Judge Mortezavi in Geneva.

This will give the confidence needed to the Iranian people that they can win and the Islamic regime is vulnerable.

The Face of an Idiot

Look at this idiot, Shahla Shahangian! She is obviously not an Islamist, but more likely a member of the elite in the previous regime. One of those who enjoyed all the priviliges but when the going got tough, were amongst the first to pack their bags, take out their unearned wealth and flee Iran to LA.

Now she is displaying the Islamic Republic flag, knowing what it stands for.

Typical trait of the elite of the old establishment, lets suck up to whoever is in power, no matter what!

Associated Press or Amateur Press

I didn't get time to write about this Associated Press report of crackdown on Iranian women protesters:
By NASSER KARIMI, Associated Press Writer

but its just another example of amateur, biased and inaccurate reporting of the Iranian pro-democracy movement by the Western media. The AP report says the protest was organised by "group calling itself the Labor and Communist Party". To me its so obvious that this is a made up name delivered by Islamic Republic's misinformation units. What "Labor and Communist Party"? Has anyone ever heard of such an organisation? In all the reports on Iranian websites and weblogs, did any one come across this? The main people who were arrested, the likes of Iranian journalist, Zhila Bani-Yaghoub, or activists like Shahla Entesari or Mossavi-Khoeini - whose whereabouts since the arrest is still unknown - or the Iranian poetess, Simin Behbahani, who was beaten up, do they belong to this "Labor and Communist Party"?

Its so obvious that the Islamic Republic mis-information organisations wanted to degrade the news, and the AP reporter has fallen for it, hook, line and sinker!

But the worst bit is the last paragraph, which actually raises my suspicions on the Iranian reporter used by AP, Nasser Karimi:
"Despite such restrictions, Iranian women have more rights than their counterparts in Saudi Arabia and some other conservative Muslim countries. They can drive, vote and run for office."

Isn't this last paragraph trying to belittle the Iranian women? So what if Iranian women can drive but the Saudi women can't?? Why should Iranian women who have struggled for their rights for more than a century be compared to Saudi women? The last paragraph sort of gives the impression that Iranian women should be grateful! And actually Iranian women can not run for every office!

To me this kind of reporting is so bizarre and I do not come across it any where else. Did you ever see a report on Greenham Common women which ended by saying,
"But British women protesters are more active in society than their Albanian counter-parts and could vote before Swiss women got the vote."???

What absolute bollocks the Western press is.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

70% Approval Rating?

I had the email below from Ewen MacAskill few days ago:

"I am a journalist on the guardian and would like to speak to you about Iran. what is your number?" ewen macaskill, diplomatic editor

I gave him my number and told him when it would be convenient to talk. In fact I waited after work and didn't catch my train home to make sure my mobile was switched on. Mr. Macaskill never phoned however. Well he wasn't the first snotty British reporter I have come across who somehow think their time is worth more than yours. So I thought to hell with him!

Thanks to the internet and blog, we dont have to be unnecessarily polite to rude journalists any longer. Reading MacAskill's nonsense article in the Guardian today, I feel I really have to expose the incompetence of some of these people who at times are not reporters but more like mouth organs of repressive regimes.

The title of his article is a definitive statement "A year on, Ahmadinejad's popularity is soaring".
So the first question that comes to mind is on the basis of which free poll did Mr. MacAskill and his co-writer, Simon Tisdall, come to this conclusion?

MacAskill is in fact quoting "Iranian officials and western diplomats ". Well what do you expect Iranian officials to say? and how do the Western diplomats gauge the popular mood? Those who are privileged to live in democracies always forget one thing and this really has to be drummed in to their heads:
Citizens of a repressive regime don't always say what is in their hearts when they are asked questions, they say what is safe to say.

Only a fool of a reporter would go to the streets of North Korea and interview people about what they think about their leader and attach any validity to their replies.

MacAskill in his first paragraph also regurgitates this stupid claim : "a year after he unexpectedly won a closely contested presidential election." Nothing here to suggest that the authors, between the pair of them, ever recognised the massive vote rigging that selected Ahmadi-Nejad, even in an "election" that applied the most restrictive filtering and selection criteria of candidates ever seen before in the Islamic Republic itself.

Now we never find out who the diplomats were that told MacAskil and Tisdall about Ahmadi-Nejad's surging popularity but one of the non-diplomat sources turns out to be Nasser Hadian, a professor of political science at Tehran University. Talk to any one of Nasser Hadian's past and present students and they will tell you this is one slippery university lecturer with one aim in his life, getting to bed with whoever is in power and whoever pulls the strings at the time. For a long time, Hadian has been a Rafsanjani affiliate, and now that he sees Rafsanjani's power may be in decline, he is edging himself closer with the new kids on the block. To take a comment from someone like Hadian as gospel proof that Ahmadi-Nejad's popularity is surging is just laughable.

Reading further on, the article claims "many people were surprised that Mr Ahmadinejad had not turned out to be as socially conservative as many expected". There is actually no doubt that Ahmadi-Nejad is very socially conservative and very superstitious. Ahmadi-Nejad did try to turn the clocks back and reinforce a full adherence of the Islamic dress code on women but the authorities soon realised that they just can not do that any more. Once again however, rather than the Iranian women getting the credit for resisting the social restrictions, Ahmadi-Nejad and the ruling clerics in Iran are credited by the western reporters.

What MacAskill and his colleague are unable to report back on, are the endless jokes amongst Iranians on the street that bufoon President Ahmadi-Nejad, or the mocking of nuclear slogans that were shouted in every street corner in Iran during the Iranian fire festivals. The reason for this failure is simple, their sources are never from a cross section of opinions. Some sources seem to provide better cheese and wine.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

German Neo Nazis Under the Islamic Republic Flag

The stupidity of the clerics ruling Iran has no end. This picture from the Spiegel Magazine shows the German Neo-Nazis (NPD) with their souvenior Islamic Republic flag.

NPD praise Ahmadi-Nejad as a pro-Hitler, anti-semitic and anti-Communist champion.

What will the mullahs do next to justify an attack on Iran? How will the Islamic Republic apologists explain this? Oh yes I forgot, the Islamic Republic apologists will say the alliance of NPD and Islamic Republic is anti-imperialist!

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Eighty Year Old Woman Amongst Prisoners

One of the women who were taken to Evin prison after the rally in 7 Tir Square, was eighty years old!

The Islamic regime is therefore scared of an 80 year old woman who takes part in a peaceful rally!

My salutations to this 80 year old lioness who wants the new generation of Iranian women to have the rights which she enjoyed in her youth. If only all of the previous generation of Iranians who got us in this mess, had her courage.

Simin Behbahani, Iran’s foremost contemporary national poetess was also amongst the women who were beaten up.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

The Courage of Iranian Women

Once again Iranian women challenged the Islamo-Fascists, and once again the intolerant clerics could not tolerate a peaceful gathering.

Look at the pictures, this is the confrontation of good against evil, progress against reincarnated figures from the Dark Ages.
[I think this is Iranain journalist Zhila Bani-Yaghoub being handcuffed by the bullish looking policewoman]

"We are women, we are human, but we don't have any rights!" protesters chanted.
This is what they wanted:
- Banning polygamy;
- Reversal of men's uncontested right to divorce;
- Equal child custody rights for mothers and fathers;
- Equal rights in marriage (such as a woman's right to choose where she works, to travel freely, etc.);
- Increase in the legal age of children to 18 years of age (currently girls are viewed as adults at 9 years of age and boys at 15 years of age, making them eligible to be tried as adults);
- Equal value placed on women's testimony in court; and
- Elimination of temporary work contracts which disproportionately and negatively impact women.
Yet Elaheh Rostami, a lecturer at SOAS and a promoter of the Islamic regime, claims "Iranian women have more rights now than before the revolution" How could the British universities have sunk to such a low level to employ such idiots as lecturers?

From the BBC report:
"The viciousness of the police attack caused men who were passing by in the street to protest, our correspondent says. These are our sisters, how can you do this?" passers-by shouted at police. The women then gathered again on the other side of the square, but the police used pepper spray against them and onlookers.
As the police started making arrests members of the public who had nothing to do with the protest repeatedly shouted: "Leave them alone."
One man screamed at the police, saying: "Why do you take money from the government to beat women like this
Feminists of Europe, have some shame! These are your sisters being beaten up. They want the same rights as you. Why do you think Iranian women are not worthy of your support??????

Sunday, June 11, 2006

No Other Flag Other than the Sun and Lion

We decided to go and watch the Iran v Mexico match at a pub in North London. With a convoy of 4 cars all packed to capacity and Sun and Lion flags sticking out of each window, we cruised down the streets of North London. Most people were confused who we supported, some asked us if that was the Dutch flag, as Holland had just won the match in the afternoon :)
I wondered to myself if there would be any dim wits waving the Islamic Republic flag when we get to the venue.

fortunately, we saw only three Islamic Republic flags and the rest were all Sun and Lion flags. First one was a young boy with the IRI flag draped around him. I approached him and asked if he thought there was anything Iranian about the flag he had put across his shoulder? He said ashamedly "I know, but I just didn't have any other flag". I told him but brother thats no excuse to wave this. He gave me the IRI flag, and I bought him a drink, shook his hand and embraced him like a new found friend.

The other two with Islamic Republic flags were both females and the women in our group approached them. One of them was a young girl in a short skimpy skirt and a low cut blouse, looking even more stupid as she flapped the Islamic flag about. She folded up her flag and put it in her hand bag and the other woman exchanged her Islamic flag for a Sun and Lion flag. Now I could relax and enjoy myself.

The sun was shining majestically and the Iranian girls were looking more beautiful than ever.

When the national anthem was played in the stadium, we all started singing the Ey Iran, Marze Por Gohar. Our country's rightful national anthem.

I let the pictures tell the rest of the story:

Finally all that heat generated form all that excitement blew up the projector's bulb :) and we had to watch the rest of the match on small screens :)

And as usual there were no figures of "Iranian opposition", who appear all over our media, in the crowd. It is beneath them to appear where Iranians gather. They were probably too busy writing articles and poetry or organising useless conferences than to mix with the plebs.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

World Cup

I have to be honest, I can not feel too enthusiastic about the Iranian team in the world cup. The team will be wearing shirts displaying the Islamic Republic emblem and they will be singing the Islamic Republic national anthem before the matches, does that represent Iran? hardly so.

More importantly, I am predicting there will be some unaware idiotic Iranians in London, who will unknowingly wave the Islamic Republic flag while watching the football matches. It is our duty to identify these people, talk to them and persuade them to wave the Sun and Lion flag instead. The IRI flag is not the Iranain flag, it has nothing on it that represents Iran, waving the IRI flag will be displaying support for the Islamic Republic. We must not allow this.

Zarqawi is Dead, His Ideology is Not

I don't know how some of the Left in UK, like the SWP, will regard Zarqawi's death. Perhaps to them, the Islamo-Fascist Zarqawi will be the next Che Guevara, I can not put it past them. To most sensible level headed people however, Zarqawi's death is welcome news. How can a freedom loving person not relish the fact that a brutal group which routinely decapitated innocent people, has now been decapitated itself?

Wherever Zarqawi went, atrocities, carnage and massacre followed. In Talafar, arqawi and his henchmen beheaded innocent Iraqis merely for their ability to speak English! Of course the one sided Western media never showed pictures of Zarqawi's crimes and the sufferings he caused on the Iraqi people. Nor did they give coverage to the co-operation of the Iraqi people with the authorities which eradicated Talafar from Zarqawi's mob.

So Zarqawi is dead and that is good news, however his ideology of Islamo-Fascism is not dead. Zarqawi's evil ideology does not fear death, it glorifies it and thrives on it. To stop future Zarqawis from spawning, we must confront his ideology, we must disgrace their leaders and we must dry up their coffers. Then we will have real lasting success.