Wednesday, July 28, 2010

A Regime that Detains Lawyers for Defending their Clients

This is a picture of Abolfazl Abedini, his hands and his feet are chained as he is briefed by his lawyer. Abolfazl Abedini is a human rights activist. He has never taken up arms or engaged in any violence.

After the crackdown by government security agents against human rights activists, Abedini was arrested at his family’s home in Ramhormoz on March 3, this year. He was brutally assaulted, beaten, and taken away. He was later transferred to ward 2a in Evin prison and sentenced to 11 years imprisonment.

His council, seen in the picture holding papers, is Mohammad Oliyaifard. He is also now detained in ward 350 of Evin prison to serve a one year prison sentence

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Iran's Forgotten Cyber Warrior

His name is Hossein Ronaghi Maleki, or as he was better known with his Noms de guerre on Facebook, Babak Khorramdin, the Iranian hero who resisted the Arab invaders from his castle in Badh,  for more than twenty years.

Hossein is an IT whiz kid, a genius who decided to use his intellect to serve his people in beating the government control on information and news censorship. During last year's post-election fraud protests, Hossein played a pivotal role in providing anti-filters and fresh updated proxies before the expected protest days, which were then quickly spread amongst Iran's cyber community to help the citizen journalists to show what was going on inside Iran to the world. His arrest became the intelligence ministry's top priority. The Supreme Leader, Khamanei, was the modern day Caliph, hell bent on capturing the modern day Babak, who was shaking the very foundations of his rule, from his cyber base trenches.

When the historic Babak was captured, the Abbassid Caliph,  Al-Mu'tassam, wanted to convey the most devastating message to Babak's followers by handing out the most barbaric punishment to Babak. The Caliph ordered his henchmen, to cut off Babak's legs and arms one by one and make him die of a slow death.

Babak bravely dabbed his face with the drained blood pouring out of his cuts, thus depriving the Caliph and the rest of the Abbasid army from seeing his face go pale as a result of the heavy loss of blood, so that they didn't get the impression he looked scared.

Since his capture, Hossein has been subjected to the most horrific tortures, and to make matters worse, he suffers from heart and kidney ailments. His brother Hassan was also imprisoned, even though Hassan had no role in any political activity. To put eve more pressure on Hossein in order to break him down, he was forced to watch his brother being tortured for a month, which led to Hassan suffering neck injuries.

The regime is denying Hossein much needed medical treatment. On the last occasion he had a telephone conversation with his mother, he could not finish his call because of constant severe coughing.

Hossein Ronaghi-Maleki, our modern day equivalent of Babak Khorramdin, is now on hunger strike, and is resisting all the regime's barbaric pressures to appear on state TV and make a false confession. He is dabbing his face with blood to deny the regime's henchmen the satisfaction that they have broken him down.

While so many people undeservedly are basking in receiving awards and acclaims without ever having contributed to breaking the internet censorship in Iran, with much hype on bogus non-existent anti-filter softwares, the true hero of Iran's cyber revolution, Hossein Ronaghi-Maleki remains forgotten and unattended but he is standing proud and resolute to the end.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Released Iran Student Exposes the Conditions in Iran's Prisons

Iman Sadighi was a student at Babol Industrial university, and active member of the university's Islamic Society. he is banned from continuing his education and served 130 days in Babol prison. He was charged with 'acting against national security and carrying out propaganda against the regime'.

The following are excerpts of his account of what goes on inside Iran's prisons:

'I was arrested in my house, they broke my door, pointed a gun at me and took away all the electronic equipment as well as my personal belongings and documents in my house. I was taken to Babol intelligence ministry and was tied to a metal bar for four hours before I was interrogated. After 10 days of interrogation, I was taken to Babol prison, I was released on bail 17 days later until my trial,which turned out to be a complete show trial, it was obvious the  judge had already made up his mind and sentenced me to 10 months in prison. Once again I was taken to Babol prison.

We were held with dangerous common criminals, prisoners who had committed crimes like murder, kidnapping, rape. There were ten rooms in that wing and each room held 15 prisoners. Fighting amongst prisoners and homosexual acts was a daily occurrence. In one incident two inmates had a fight with each other and one of them bit the other's ear off, then to prove how dangerous he was, he chewed and swallowed the ear.

On another occasion, two prisoners were chained to each other from the legs and brought out in the yard for punishment. One of them had to perform a homosexual act on the other and every time he got tired and stopped, he was beaten on the head and made to continue. Other inmates who were watching just cheered and laughed.

You felt that there was nothing of humanity left inside the prison. At times like this one even hates being a human being. Most of these inmates were so high on drugs, they had become insane, they should have been in mental hospitals and not in prison.

We asked the prison authorities to give a special wing for political detainees, but the prison chief said, 'I don't provide special wing for counter revolutionaries'.

One of our friends, Mohsen Barzegar was attacked by another prisoner while using the phone, he was slashed across the throat, the news leaked out and finally the prison chief agreed to put the political detainees in a special wing. The special wing was a run down place not used to hold prisoners for years. To begin with, we had real problems with the basic hygiene. Our rooms were infested with cockroaches, sometimes the cockroaches would even get in our food. At night, the cockroaches would get into our beds and we would wake up with them crawling over our faces. To add to all this, our blankets were infested with lice and there were rats that came in the cell from time to time. We killed over 180 cockroaches in five days and washed the blankets which I think were last washed 10 years ago, to make life easier, but despite all this, we were better off than what as happening to Mr. Ali Tari, who was Moussavi's campaign manager in Babolsar.

This 51 year old man was kept in a solitary cell, so small it was like one's grave, for seventy two days. There are no toilets in these solitary cells, prisoners are only ever allowed to use the toilets three times a day, many times they can't wait for their turn and they have to do their toilet in the cell, which is why the solitary wing cells reek of excrement stench. This 51 year old man was accused of having sprayed paint over the Supreme Leader's banner and the intelligence ministry agents used to boast about what they had done to Mr. Tari.

During my time in prison, I saw a reformist prisoner, who had served 8 years during the war with Iraq, he had several of his fingers cut off as a result of war injuries, yet despite his glorious war record, he was put in the same hole as the rest of the common criminals. One thing is for certain though, whoever serves in the Islamic Republic's prisons will never forgive this regime ever again.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Defected Iranian Diplomat Faces Deportation by Japan

At a time like this all efforts should be made to expedite regime defections. The whole establishment has ran out of options and could crumble like a pack of cards if the right push is given. What is happening to the defected Iranian diplomat, Abolfazl Eslami in Japan, does not however inspire confidence, as he and his sons face deportation to the Islamic Republic by the Japanese authorities.

Abolfazl Eslami joined Iran's Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1986, but after the murder of Iranian born Canadian photojournalist, Zahra Kazemi, he decided to resign and encouraged his other discontented colleagues to resign too. Since he was previously the Iranian embassy councillor in Tokyo and it was not possible for him to contact Western embassies in Iran, Eslami decided to leave Iran for Tokyo.

In January 2006, he arrived in Tokyo. He was told Japan is a member of UNHCR and he could seek asylum there. As he waited for the UNHCR to complete his process, the Iranian regime traced his whereabouts and first tried to entice him into returning by bribes and promises and when that didn't work, the tactics changed to physical harassment and threats and Eslami had to relocate his family outside Tokyo.

With the start of the Green Movement in Iran, Eslami was more encouraged and along with his two sons, they took part in the demos outside the Iranian embassy in Tokyo. On May 16th, this year, his house was raided by seven Japanese policemen after a complaint was made by Abbas Eraghchi, the IRI ambassador to Tokyo. The Japanese police wanted to detain his two sons who had splashed green paint on the embassy walls.

Eslami and his sons were taken to a police station and interrogated for hours. Eslami explained that he and his sons were demonstrating against the cruelty of the regime in Iran but the Japanese police were more interested in that splashing paint on a public building wall is a criminal act with a maximum of 3 years imprisonment, 300000 Yen fine and payment of the cleaning expenses. Even worse, Eslami was told his two sons faced deportation back to Iran after their student visa ran out. Eslami explained what would happen to them if they were deported to Iran, but the Japanese police were unsympathetic and said 'If prison and torture is the punishment for opposing the government in Iran, then your sons should obey the Iranian law'.

The Japanese police were keen to show some flexibility however, if Abolfazl Eslami and his sons apologised to the Iranian ambassador in Tokyo, then he may be persuaded to drop the charges.

Not exactly an inspiring story to encourage other regime officials to defect. Imagine if a Soviet diplomat defected during the cold war years, I am sure he wouldn't have been treated like this.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Common Goals of the 'Great Leader' and the 'Supreme Leader'

Whenever someone used to ask me to explain to them what is going on inside Iran, I would start by saying Islamic Republic is not North Korea, meaning the despotism is not as absolute in Iran as it is in North Korea and there are avenues for dissent and civil society within the Islamic Republic. Sadly however IRI is fast moving towards becoming an Islamic version of North Korea.

In a fringe meeting of Inter Parliamentarian Union conference in Geneva, Iran's speaker of Parliament, Ali Larijani, 'hailed staunch bilateral ties between the two 'nations!' and thanked North Korea's contributions to Iran under Kim-Il-Sung, the Great Leader' Press TV reports.

For his part, North Korean speaker Choe Thae Bok highlighted his country's full support for the Islamic Republic and the common goals the two states have.

Its obvious what the common goals of Communist North Korea that allows no worship of any religion in the country and that of the Islamic Republic which has massacred thousands of Iranian Communists are, the total subjugation of their people. Ideologies they pretend to adhere to after all are just superficial excuses to control the people.

And just what were the two doing in Geneva? So much for the strict European sanctions.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Before and After Prison Pictures

Iranian film director, Jafar Panahi, before and after his prison:

Human Rights activist, Emadeldin Baghi:

Former deputy president Mohamamd Abtahi:

Journalist, Issa Saharkhiz, a mountain of a man who has been detained for 13 months after being interviewed by Channel 4. Today he refused to defend himself in court and instead called  for the removal and trial of the Supreme Leader, Ali Khamenei
Courage beyond words could describe

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Dissident Cleric 'I Confess, I Acted Against National Security'

'Acting Against National Security' is the most common charge against dissidents in Iran as it is in other dictatorships. Of course what is meant by 'National Security' charge against dissidents is not the security and the interests of the people but the security of the ruling clique who want to plunder the nation uninterrupted. Hojjatol-Islam, Ahmad Ghabel, is a dissident cleric who was arrested by the government agents in Iran, as he was on his way to take part in Ayatollah Montazeri's funeral. He has been temporarily released on bail after seven months and has immediately written an open letter to the Supreme Leader which boldly describes the extent of terror and tragedy in Iran's prisons:

'I confess to being guilty of having voted for Khameneii when he became the president and later in the process that helped him become the Supreme Leader. I confess to my role in what has shaped today's despotism and tyranny in the country. If I am guilty of acting against national security, then I confess my role in all this has been acting against national security.  For it has come to this point that a religious scholar like me is taken to court with my hands and feet in chains, and a hoodlum thug is the official monody singer of the Supreme Leader's court.

I saw things in Vakil Abad prison with my own eyes that had I just heard about them, I would not have believed them. In the Vakil Abad prison there is a young man whose paralysed from neck down as a result of his tortures during interrogation. In another crime, the prison refused to even accept the body of a dead person who was killed during his interrogation.

While I was in prison, we learned about a young man who was due to be hanged within three days, only to be saved when the real culprit turned up at the last minute. When he was asked why did you confess to the murder when you were not the murderer, he said 'They took me to a place and did things with me that I was ready to embrace death and confess to tens of murders to save myself from what I was made to go through'

Friday, July 16, 2010

An Islamic Republic Where Chanting Allah Akbar is Considered a Crime

'Those who chanted Allah Akbar from their roof tops will be made answerable on the day of resurrection.' Hojjat-ol-Islam Ghara'ti, Head of Namaz and Zakat HQ in Mashad said on Thursday.

Words fail me to write more on this. In the early days after the 1979 Islamic revolution, they would smell your breadth in case you have drunk alcohol, now three decades on, in a state that calls itself Islamic Republic, it is a crime to chant Allah Akbar!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Guardian Council Approves Postponement of Town and County Local Elections

Prior to last year's fraudulent elections in Iran, the regime apologists would go out of their way to say the regime in Iran is a popular one and those who oppose the regime are just a few counter-revolutionary disgruntled exiled ex-pats. After the massive protests in the aftermath of last year's election fraud and thanks to the courage and initiative of Iran's citizen journalists, this was no longer a realistic tenable position by the apologists and the 'useful idiots'. The world saw clearly the extent of the opposition to the regime and the brutal crackdown that followed.

Hence the 'useful idiots' and apologists, aware of the desires of the self hating rich kids in the European Left to endear themselves to the working classes, even though the vast majority of them are not remotely working class themselves, came up with the notion that the protests in Iran are carried out by Iran's affluent North Tehran kids and not supported by the working classes. They argued that Ahamdinejad was supported by the poor and the working classes and enjoyed large support outside Tehran and in the provinces and the country side. An argument that appealed to some of the European Left who were shocked at how wrong they may have been in their assessment of a popular regime in Iran.

Of course we know how large the protests were and of course we know Tehran does not have that many affluent kids and in fact the affluent kids largely stayed away from the protests, but without an independent poll, how could one argue against this nonsense?

I tried to argue against this on Aljazeera once as best as I could:

but as always it is best to wait for the regime to shoot itself in the foot and provide the evidence, even though sadly for most of the Western media this was not sensational enough news to report. The Town and County local elections which were due to take place this year have been postponed to be held simultaneously with the next presidential (s)elections and today the Guardian Council approved this! So if Ahmadinejad enjoys so much support in the provinces and the rural areas, why were these elections postponed. Surely it would have been a good opportunity for the regime to show how popular it is and that it is able to hold these elections without much fuss.

To postpone these elections are totally unconstitutional. After all when you vote for your representatives, you trust them to represent you for a limited period that was agreed at the time. So lets wait and hear what spin the 'useful idiots' put on this now?

Monday, July 12, 2010

Toilet Paper Export to Turkmenistan

Who said Iran's economy is not booming?? According to the news website of the Islamic Republic Consultative Assembly (Majlis), only in the first three months of this year, Iran has exported 1,164 Kilograms of toilet paper. According to another Iranian news agency ISNA, the toilet paper was exported to Turkmenistan and worth $349.

None of the reports said how such successful marketing was achieved or whether the toilet papers were exported before use or after.


Clerical Lies on Stoning in Iran

Last year, on Junne 22nd, Hojjatoleslam Ali Shahroukhi, Head of the Majlis Judicial and Legal Commission stated that stoning as a punishment had been abolished from Iran's penal code. The claim appeared on the Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA), here:

But as you can see the above link was removed yesterday after the head of the Islamic Republic Judicial Commission on Human Rights, Mohamad Javad Larijani, stated that stoning still remained part of the country's constitution and penal code.

The IRNA link from last year is still cached in Google however and can still be viewed if the cached link is clicked. Below is the full text as it appeared until yesterday:

'Majlis abolish law on stoning

Tehran, June 22,IRNA – Head of Mahlis[sic] Judicial and Legal Commission Hojatoleslam Ali Shahroukhi said on Monday that the law on stoning punishment has been abolished.
The amendment to the law was made in line with the expediency of the Islamic system, he said.

In an exclusive interview with IRNA, he said since Islam has set very tough conditions for proving crimes subject to stoning sentence, the member of Majlis judicial and legal commission decided to omit it from the Islamic penal law.'

The Golden Rule: Never ever believe what the Islamic Republic officials say.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

What Was Going on in Iran This Time Last Year


This was last year at the same moment in Iran...

Mr. Amir Javadifar, 24, was a song writer and a technology management student at the Azad University of Qazvin. He liked acting and was an acting student at the Karnameh Institute. According to a person close to him, he was “full of lust for life.” He was distanced from politics and had no political affiliation. He participated and voted in the 2009 election at the urging of people close to him.

On July 9, 2009, Mr. Amir Javadifar was arrested by plain-clothes agents of the Basij Base in Tehran during a demonstration protesting the result of the presidential election and honoring the tenth anniversary of a Tehran University dormitory incident. He was transferred to Police Station 148 on Enqelab Avenue.

According to Mr. Javadifar’s father’s attorney, Mr. Amir Javadifar was in critical condition after being beaten before his arrest. Police agents took him to the Firuzgar hospital the same night at 9:00 p.m. They contacted his father and informed him of his whereabouts. At the hospital they took an MRI of Mr. Javadifar’s head which showed no internal bleeding in his brain. X-rays showed injuries to his elbow, jaw, and nose. He was released from the hospital at midnight and, with the insistance of his family and cooperation of Police Station 148, he was transferred to the Laleh private hospital in Shahrak-e-Gharb in Tehran. He was accepted and hospitalized on July 10 at 2:00 a.m. He was visited by various specialist physicians at 9:00 a. m. and no particular problem was diagnosed based on the X-rays. Specialists released him from the hospital with only pain killers and eye drops that same day at 1:00 p. m. (Sarmayeh Newspaper)

Friday, July 09, 2010

The Beginning of Iran's Secular Movement

Today is a special day in the Iranian calendar that marks the anniversary of two occasions, the uprising by Iran's finest officers in the Shahrokhi airbase soon after the 1979 revolution and the student uprising in 1999 that spread to 19 cities and went on for six days.

Air force officers in Shahrokhi airbase, saw the tragedy that was looming ahead for their homeland. Despite the odds being against them, they decided it was time for action and sacrifice. They were betrayed by Iran's pro-Soviet Union Communists, the Tudeh party, who were trying to endear themselves to the new regime, but the heroism of the Shahrokhi officers during their televised show trial made them into legends of Iranian history and symbols of Iran's struggle for liberty.

The student uprising in 1999, although brutally crushed, was the beginning of Iran's secular movement. The cry of a new generation who showed the world, that despite all the attempts to brainwash the population, the overwhelmingly young Iranians wanted change and follow a different direction to the previous generation who were duped into pushing Iran back to the dark ages. A decade since the struggle for democracy and secularism continues and more and more of the establishment are breaking away.

All that is required now, is for the international public opinion to accept that the present rulers in Iran are not representing the citizens of Iran and to rally around the Iranian people's desire for change.

Ezzatollah Ebrahimnejad, student martyr of 9th July, 1999

Thursday, July 08, 2010

Two Camels for Ahmadinejad in Timbuktu

Pro-Ahmadinejad papers and websites in Iran were full of it today, praising the 'scientific and learned' community in Mali for the extra ordinary warm welcome they gave to Ahmadinejad.

Below, the banner welcoming Ahmadienjad is in Arabic, which suggests how much the 'scientific and learned' community of Mali know about Iran!

Two camels were slaughtered in honour of Ahmadienjad after this dance by the learned community of Mali.

Monday, July 05, 2010

Iran's Motrebs

'Motreb' is one of those Arabic words imported into the Persian language which have deviated from their original Arabic meaning. In Arabic, it should mean someone who brings joy, a singer, a performer but in Iran it has a derogatory meaning. It is referred to a performer without any scruples, without any principles, someone who will perform anything for anyone as long as there is a payment. A cheap trash artist of the worst kind.

On Friday, IRI's state TV went out of its way to show a gathering of Iran's 'motrebs' with the Supreme dictator himself. One 'motreb' went even further than the rest of her cohorts in trying to flatter the Supreme dictator, responsible for the deaths of so many innocent protesters in the last year, by claiming that even though she was suffering from a 39 degree temperature, she would not have missed this chance of face to face meeting with her 'beloved Supreme Leader'. She also added how impressed she was with the Supreme Leader's supremacy  of insight and knowledge into Iranian cinema and television entertainment. The real name of this 'motreb' is Sakineh Kaboodar Ahangi but her stage name has been Parvaneh Massoumi. Below is a picture of Parvaneh Massoumi before the 1979 revolution (on the right) and how she conveniently changed her looks after the revolution!

Sunday, July 04, 2010

Manifestation of International Political Arena in the World Cup by IRI's FM, Mottaki

When IRI's Foreign Minister, Manouchehr Mottaki, expressed his joy by saying 'Iran's enemies' deserved to go out of the world cup, referring to USA, England and France who had been eliminated in the earlier rounds of the tournament, he did so because those who think they represent God on earth, must also claim divine intervention is on their side.

So what has happened after Mottaki's press interview on Tuesday? Brazil, one of the favourites to win the world cup, has been knocked out by Holland. Brazil voted against the sanctions.

Argentina was another favourite to win the world cup. The Argentinian manager, Diego Maradona had expressed support for Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his administration, one year after the fraudulent elections and all the atrocities committed against the Iranian people, former cocaine addict, Maradona, presented Ahmadinejad with an autographed shirt. Yet Argentina was humiliated 4-0 by Germany which also voted for UN resolution 1929.

Now all is left is Holland, Germany, Spain and Uruguay. Who will Mottaki back now to prove the almighty supports the self claimed representatives of God on earth? :)

Thursday, July 01, 2010

Hamed Rouhinejad Denied Medical Care for Multiple Sclerosis

Hamed Rouhinejad is an Iranian student of philosophy who has been imprisoned since April last year. Hamed who also suffers from the terrible debilitating MS disease, was first sentenced to execution, but his sentence was later commuted to 10 years.

According to Human Rights groups in Iran, Hamed's conditions are fast deteriorating. He is detained in ward 7 of Evin prison. So far, he has been denied all medical treatment outside the prison and has not been allowed even one day temporary leave from prison. The coroner's office previously confirmed Hamed Rouhinejad's weakening condition and the fact that he will not be able to withstand such harsh prison conditions.

In a further despicable act, the prison officials have prevented Hamed's family from delivering his medicine. Latest news on Hamed Rouhinejad is that he has now lost the use of one of his arms and is even having problems with his hearing and his vision. Hamed is due to be transferred to Zanjan prison, North West of Iran, to serve the rest of his sentence, which will be even further away from his family.There just seems to be no limit to the brutality and inhumanity of Ahmadinejad's administration.