Monday, February 28, 2011

Green Embassies Campaign Statement Regarding the Claims Made by the “Green Wave” Organisers

Green Embassies Campaign Statement Regarding the Claims Made by the “Green Wave” Organisers

Recently an organisation by the name of Green Wave has issued a press statement addressing the senior members of Iran's embassies abroad. Some parts of the statement imply the Green Embassies Campaign is connected to the Green Wave organisation. It is therefore necessary for the Green Embassies Campaign, which is made up of Iranian diplomats, who have defected to join the Iranian people's pro-democracy movement and in protest to the religious dictatorship rule in Iran, to make the following points in order to make matters clear for all:

1. In the statement made by an organisation calling itself the Green Wave, it is claimed that “Mohammad Reza Heydari, the founder of the Green Embassies Campaign, is the representative of the group calling itself Green Wave and is responsible for appointing and determining ways of co-operation and specific missions of defected diplomats”. While the Green Embassies Campaign emphasises the urgency for national solidarity with the objective of the dissolution of the Islamic Republic, it has to be made clear that Mohamamd Reza Heydari has never been the representative of the Green Wave as it is claimed in their statement.

2. Just like Mohamad Reza Heydari, who willingly and on his own accord defected and joined the people of Iran, following the brutal crackdown of Iranian protesters on the day of Ashura in 2009, other diplomats who defected afterwards, did so voluntarily and to their own accord. The group calling itself the Green Wave had no role in these defections.

3. The Green Wave statement claims “The security arrangement of these individuals [diplomats] is part of the framework of the Green Wave's duties and responsibilities”. It needs to be said that the members of the Green Embassies Campaign, have years of diplomatic experience and are aware of the laws in their host countries, and are capable of their own security and safety arrangements themselves. Any claims by the Green Wave that they are making such security arrangements for the defected diplomats is completely baseless and untrue.

4. At the end, once again we emphasise that strengthening national solidarity, especially amongst Iran's democratic opposition, is one of the strategies of the Green Embassies Campaign. We maintain our independence and while endeavouring to encourage more regime employees abroad to join the Iranian people's struggle, at the same time we stretch our hand in friendship and co-operation to each individual compatriot who is working for the dissolution of the current Islamic regime in bringing about democracy in Iran.

The Green Embassies Campaign

27th Feb, 2011

Sunday, February 27, 2011

New Videos from Iran

Mother fights the security forces who want to arrest his son

People in Isfahan beat up anti-riot guard who hit a woman

Baseej on bikes charge through protesters

Saturday, February 26, 2011

The Disgraceful Silence of Shiite Clergy

Ever since we were kids, we were told by our elders and by the Shiite clergy about the prophet's grandson, Hossein. He was the embodiment of good against evil, a fearless man of justice who stood up against the tyranny of Yazid, the ruling Khalif at the time, against all odds. The pledge by the Kufa warriors and tribal leaders who had promised loyalty to Hossein turned out to be tall tales of cheap talk bravado. Hossein was left on his own to face the tyrant Yazid, with just seventy two men against a large number of Yazid's army.

All water was cut off to Hossein and his entourage by the ruling Khalif's army. On the seventh day of the month of Muharram, the water storage in Hussein's camp was finished. When Hossein took his six month old baby, Ali-Asghar and asked the tyrant's army for water for his children, they shot arrows at him, one of which killed the six month old baby, Ali-Asghar.

Hossein however refused to back down and cower, as the battle of Karbala began, he told his men:
'I do not see death but as happiness, and living with tyrants but as sorrow.'

And so Hossein and his Seventy Two followers became martyrs that were celebrated by the Shiites ever since. They were all beheaded and their bodies were left for forty days without burial. Hossein's family members were taken prisoners to Syria. We were taught by our elders and by the Shiite clergy to be like Hossein, to be fearless and to stand up to tyranny and that at the end it was Hossein and his Seventy Two men who were victorious and won the hearts.

Today, something very similar to the epic of Karbala is happening in Iran. A courageous man, Karroubi the Lion Heart, has decided to stand by his people to the very end, risking everything including the lives of his own family. Today Karroubi the Lion Heart has embraced Hossein's last words to his warriors. Just like in Karbala, the tyrants cut off his water and supplies. They arrested his son Ali and his wife Nafisseh who is the sister of three war martyrs. The whereabouts of Ali is still unknown. His other son, Hossein is still in hiding. Today neighbours reported that last night there were no lights switched on, the windows are broken and there are no more security outside his house. Giving rise to fears that Karroubi and his wife are taken away to some hideous dungeon.

The news of Moussavi and his wife's whereabouts is no better either. Their children too have said they can not go near their house and have had no news or contact with their parents.

Yet despite all this, the Shiite clergy are all silent. Even Ayatollah Sanei has not dared to issue a public condemnation of such wrongs carried out against a fellow cleric. Worse still, Ayatollah Sistani who is safe and outside Iran has remained silent. So what happened to all those talks and sermons of Hossein's courage? Where are the Shiite clergy today? They told us about Hossein's valour and yet they have decided to emulate the deserters of Kufa today. So were all their sermons poppycock balderdash and just a source of income for their pockets?

Once again the disgraceful silence of the Shiite clergy today, for me is the testimony that organised religion is nothing more than a business. Businessmen whose sermons about justice is nothing more than a sales pitch, whose empty words never materialise when it threatens their interests. For if they truly believed in God, paradise and life after death, why are they so scared? If this life is a mere test for the day of judgement, they have failed miserably, time and time again and they should expect nothing other than hell fire for their lies and their cowardice.

True believers do not wear their piety on their sleeves, they fight evil by not staying silent.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Arrest Warrant for the Mother of Iran's Cyber Hero

An arrest warrant has been issued for the mother of Hossein Ronaghi-Maleki, the true hero of Iran's struggle against internet censorship, who is serving a 15 year jail sentence.

Hossein's mother, Zoleikha Moussavi has been charged with disseminating information about his son by holding interviews with the media outside Iran. Once again today's rulers of Iran, the enemies of knowledge and information have displayed their fear of information and their disregard for a mother's feelings for her beloved son. Hossein Ronaghi-Maleki,  like other political prisoners kept in section 350 in Evin prison, has no visitation right or telephone contact. 

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

View from a Bus in Tehran

Karroubi the Lion Heart in Grave Danger

As the news of Libya's madman, Gaddafi, massacring his own people is taking over the news in the mass media, the plight of one giant of a man in Iran is being forgotten.

Enraged with the success of the Green Movement protests on 14th Feb, which displayed the double standards of the Islamic Republic to the whole world, the ruling junta in Iran is determined to finally eliminate a lion heart cleric who has chosen to stand by his people to the very end.

Last Tuesday, the regime's henchmen went further than holding him under house arrest. Hired mobs attacked his residence again and camped outside, saying they were waiting for the Supreme Leader to issue his fatwa, so they could decapitate Karroubi and his wife and parade their heads in the streets. Security men ransacked his house, removed his documents and books and occupied his house. Karroubi and his wife are now kept in separate rooms in their house and are forced to eat the food the security agents are giving them. Many fear they will be poisoned in this way.

Pro-government publications started a call in unison to de-robe him, saying he had never been a cleric!

Karroubi's son, Ali and his wife Nafisseh were also arrested. Nafisseh's three brothers were martyred in the war to defend Iran against Saddam's invasion. Ali's whereabouts is still unknown.

Karroubi's other son, Hossein has had to go into hiding and soon may also be arrested.

Amidst all this injustice, cowards like former president Khatami and other Grand Ayatollahs have chosen to remain silent. Clerics are often known for their expediency considerations and running away when the going gets tough, but Karroubi the Lion Heart has been one exceptional cleric who was different and his valour and resoluteness won him the hearts of many, including secularists like myself.

And meanwhile, Ahmadinejad scored another rank hypocrisy today by lecturing Gaddafi on the wrongs of suppressing dissent.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Cruelty Reported Against Bystanders in Ebrat News

No foreign reporters in Iran, means the Islamic Republic can get away with a lot more cruelty and barbarity against protesters than in places like Egypt, Tunisia and Bahrain but sometimes the savagery is so indiscriminate and so senseless that even the judiciary news site can not hide it.

Ebrat News is a site close to Iran's judiciary and even this news website has been compelled to write an article about the harms of indiscriminate crackdown during the protests:

The paragraph above describes what was witnessed by a reporter from Ebrat News. Below is the translation:

Around 4:00 pm on Sunday while the Vali Asr Sq was in the control of security and military forces, some citizens, nothing to do with the protesters, were sitting on the steps outside Pasargad Bank near the Square. Amongst them were two elderly women and a young woman with a shopping bag. Several plain clothes agents on bikes in a vulgar way attacked them, one of them who had covered his face with a Baseej scarf hit the old woman several times with an electric truncheon and kept kicking her while hurling profanities at her. Even the younger woman, who seemed to be her daughter and was trying to rescue the older woman, was not spared and she too was floored after being hit with the electric truncheon. 

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Ninja Man Identified as Hadi Asgarzadeh

The  IRI security agent acting like a Ninja warrior attacking innocent bystanders with two truncheons, shown in the film here has been identified. I used the film in the last post.

His name is Hadi Asgarzadeh and he was identified when he temporarily removed his masks as he "triumphantly" returned to his friends to boast about hitting unarmed bystanders with two truncheons.

Hadi Asgarzadeh is born in 1983 and entered the Revolutionary Guards in 2001. He is also a full contact martial artist,  who received training in various Revolutionary Guards units. He is known for his psychotic tendencies and love of brutality. In 2005 he beat up his superior, Major Saeed Mozabar and was transferred to a different unit within the Revolutionary Guards. Since then he has been reprimanded a number of times for violent behaviour towards his other colleagues but he is always in demand during the protests.

Hadi Asgarzadeh lives with his parents next to the Motevaselian Sports Complex. 

Thursday, February 17, 2011

A Despicable Regime

Never underestimate the Islamic Republic's ability to shoot itself in the foot but equally never underestimate the regime's audacity and ability in making up new stories that contradict with the previous stories they make up.

I do not ever recall any regime to deny a permit for a legitimate peaceful rally and instead use maximum force to crackdown, kill, injure and imprison the protesters and then claim the protesters killed and injured the other protesters! Two people are confirmed killed from Monday's widespread protests, Sanee Zhale, a 26 year old Iranian Sunni Kurd and 22 year old student, Mohamamd Mokhtari. 

Sanee Zhale was the first confirmed death and immediately the regime resorted to a new tactic by claiming he was a supporter of the Islamic Republic and was killed by the MKO or the protesters. Of course this is all reminiscent of their stories about Neda, first it was the BBC, then MI6, then the eye witness doctor, Arash Hejazi, then the MKO etc. who had killed Neda. Press TV, IRI's mouthpiece broadcasting from London made three separate documentaries with three different stories about Neda. Now Press TV is running ads on London buses and London Underground while Iran's Trade Union leaders languish in jail. So much for the Left's International labour solidarity!

What they didn't probably envisage at the time of resorting to this tactic, was that there was so much evidence that Sanee Zhale was a supporter of the Green Movement. His photos with the late Ayatollah Montazeri, the spiritual leader of the Green Movement were the first evidence to counter the regime's claims. Then there were his class mates who confirmed Sanee was part of Moussavi's campaign in the university and an active Green Movement supporter. Sanee had written anti-establishment articles in student magazines and had performed in a student movie, Another Brick in the Wall, banned by the authorities.

An enormous amount of pressure was put on Sanee's family who were told if you do not go along with our story, we will kill your other sons. Yet despite all these threats, Sanee's brother, Ghanee managed to do an interview with VOA Persian and categorically deny that his brother had any sympathy for the regime. Ghanee was arrested shortly after.

So what does the regime do with all this massive amount of evidence against its despicable claims? The new story now is, "We have our moles everywhere who bring us information and Sanee was one of our moles who had penetrated the dissidents and spied for us!"

Has there ever been a more despicable regime than this?

and meanwhile, here is a 'protester' or an 'MKO member' dressed in Special Units uniform and imitating a ninja warrior, beating up innocent bystanders with not one truncheon but two truncheons:

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Iran's Valentine Day Martyrs

It is now confirmed that at least two protesters were killed on Monday by the barbaric Islamic Republic regime in Iran.

Sane Jaleh was the first martyr of Monday's protests to be reported. He was a Sunni Kurdish student studying at Tehran Arts Faculty. Just like with Neda, the regime started making up stories that Jaleh was killed by MKO operatives during the protests. It is incredible that after three decades of claims by the Islamic regime that the MKO is dead and buried, they should be able to send their operatives to Iran and amidst all that security on Monday, carry out such an act and get away with it! But just to pour cold water on these ridiculous claims, here is a picture of Jaleh, first from the left, with the dissident cleric and spiritual leader of the Green Movement, the late Ayatollah Montazeri:

Mohamad Mokhtari is the second person confirmed killed in the protests.
He was shot in the shoulder, but even though he was still walking for a while after he was shot, because he wasn't taken to hospital soon enough, he had bled to death. Ironically, the last status on his facebook page read:
'Almighty God! let me die standing up, for I despise lying low in humiliation'

Monday, February 14, 2011

An Eye Witness Account of What Happened in Tehran Today

They separated us in groups.  I am sure that there were at least a million but in every street sign, the guards pushed people north or south.  I marched from Ferdowsi to Yadegar emam with a lot of people and I can estimate about a million people were involved.  Here is a piece that I just sent Golnoush.  Maybe you can get some estimation from it.  People however were filming so I think there would be a flood of videos eventually.

We walked down Gharani Avenue from Karimkhan Avenue to reach Ferdowsi Square around 3 pm.  There were only three of us and we made a promise that if others do not show up we will abandon the march altogether, but were we for a nice surprise.  Even before we got to Ferdowsi Square we saw silent groups of people marching randomly with dedication in their eyes.

3:10 pm the guards were everywhere but not like they were in the Ashura demonstrations (last year).  We reached College Crossway (where Hafez Avenue crosses Enghelab Avenue) and already the sidewalks were filling up with quiet demonstrators without any signs or any slogans.  By the time we reached Vali Asr avenue we realized that the tactic of the guards and the militia is to let groups of people go and then separate them at each cross road so we tried to keep together and stay cool.  3:30 pm marked a painful visual landscape for me that I will never forget; the Basiji thugs and the Revolutionary Guards had brought children in the street.  They gave them clubs and were directing them for the attack, which happened right at that cross road.  The kids were probably 15 or 16 years old but their eyes were filled with hate.  “Good Islamic Teaching, right?” said an elderly man in an angry but muffled voice.

I called my family to tell th
em where I am but the phones went dead around 3:45 and this was when the bikes rolled into the sidewalks and started beating people.  I was separated from my friends in Enghelaab square but kept on going.  The energy of the people and especially of the women and the elderly was like an electrical charge.  I could not feel the beatings anymore and the clubs kept on coming on our heads, shoulders, legs and knees.  

Right at Jamalzadeh crossing, I heard a cheering crowd and realized that a large group of screaming demonstrators pouring south into Azadi avenue (the continuation of Enghelaab avenue after Enghelaab square towards Azadi square is called Azadi avenue.  The guards stopped all of the busses in the middle of the boulevard and forced us into the middle of the street.  I was feeling a déjà vu as we reached Dampezeshki (Animal Husbandry Hospital).  This was the same place that I was badly beaten in June 2009 post election demonstration.  So I kept myself on the extreme right side of the sidewalk.  It seems that the revolutionary guard thugs repeat the same tactics again because they rounded up the people in the middle of the street and attacked them the same way they did in 2009.  

I slipped through the angry looking guards and plain clothed militia just to confront another scene.
I reached Eskandari street and it looked like a war zone, smoke, dust, tear gas, screaming people and flying stones with regular attacks of the well equipped, motorcycle riding guards.  A petit young girl with a green wristband and a small backpack was walking to my left.  Just before we reached Navab Avenue the guards charged from behind, one of their clubs hit my left leg but three of them attacked the girl relentlessly.  She started to scream and fell down, but the guards kept on hitting her.  I ran towards them, grabbed the girl’s right hand and pulled her out of the hands of the guards.  She was dazed and crying unstoppably. I pushed her north into Navab Avenue towards Tohid square away from Azadi avenue when the guards charged towards us.  This time the crowd fought back and stones of all sizes were sent back to the dogs of war.  This gave me bit of time to ask one of the restaurants to open their door and let us in.  The girl was in shock and pain so I got her some water and tried to see if she was feeling fine.  Her clothes dusty, her backpack torn and her hands shivering she was just asking “WHY?”

The battle in front of the restaurant was an uneven war.  The crowd had only their feasts and stones found on the sides of the street, but the guards were shooting people in the head by paint guns, were spraying pepper gas and shooting tear gas canisters.  Then in a moment that I thought I would never see, to guards ran sat on one foot and fired plastic bullets into the crowd randomly.  We waited until the demonstrators pushed the guards back before leaving the restaurant.   Tear gas smoke was everywhere and the girl offered me a cigarette and although I am not a smoker, the cigarette did alleviate the burning sensation.  Within a few minutes her friends showed up and they went back down to Azadi Avenue.  For them and for all of us, the battle has just begun.
The battle raged on. 

Whether in Cairo or in Tehran, Down with the Tyrants

Today's message was loud and clear and particularly aimed at the hypocrites with double standards:
'Whether in Cairo or in Tehran, Down with the Tyrants'

The Green Movement is alive.
Islamic Republic does not care an iota about the happiness and prosperity of the Egyptians with its rhetoric.
Mubarak was a dictator but the Islamic Regime is ten times worse. At least the international media was allowed in Egypt. At least ElBaradei was able to go to the Tahrir Sq. and speak to the rally.

But as the Iranian protesters chanted today:

Mubarak, Ben Ali, Now its Your Turn Seyd Ali

Message of Solidarity by Tunisian Activist Maryam Ben Omar

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Wael Ghonim's Message of Solidarity for Iran's Green Movement

With this one message of solidarity by Wael Ghonim, all efforts by the Islamic Republic regime, Press TV, Stop the War Coalition etc. who were trying to get a free ride on the back of the Egyptian protesters fighting for democracy in Egypt has been wasted.
With this one message of solidarity, an enormous moral boost has been given to the people of Iran and the Green Movement. Solidarity is important and solidarity works. Just hope the UK trade unions will now see the light and express solidarity with the jailed transport union leaders in Iran and remove the latest Press TV posters from London underground and buses.

Wael Ghonim, the Egyptian activist hailed by observers worldwide as a hero and one of the leaders of the Egyptian uprising, appeared with a green wristband during his public speeches and interviews. As the peaceful protests after the disputed 2009 presidential election in Iran were named the “Green Movement,” Ghonim’s green wristband has become a source of interest for Iranians.
Ghonim played a major role in organizing the protests that have shaken Egypt for the past two weeks. His Facebook page is widely credited with inviting Egyptians to their first public protest on 25 January. In an interview with the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran, Ghonim thanked the people of Iran for organizing a demonstration on 14 February, in solidarity with the people of Egypt and Tunisia, and thanked the Iranian civil rights movement.
Wael Ghonim, a Google executive who took time off from his job to be in Cairo during the protests, was freed last Monday after being held by Egyptian authorities for 10 days. He is one of the best known speakers for the Egyptian people’s movement.
When asked by the Campaign whether the motivation behind his green wristband is Iran’s Green Movement, he said: “That was just a coincidence, but I’m happy you guys made the connection!”
“I would tell Iranians to learn from the Egyptians, and we have learned from you guys that at the end of the day with the power of people, we can do  whatever we want to do.  If we unite our goals, if we believe, then all our dreams can come true,” is the prominent Egyptian activist’s message to Iranians on the threshold of the 14 February demonstrations.

Sunday, February 06, 2011

The Litmus Test of Islamic Republic's Sincerity with Egypt's Protests

The protests in Egypt have been a God send for the Islamic Republic in many ways, but the protests have also further highlighted the hypocrisy of the ruling junta in Iran. Watching any of IRI media outlets, whether the state TV broadcasts inside Iran or the English language Press TV broadcasts from London, should enrage any unbiased and politically aware viewer into saying 'You hypocrites what you did to Iran's  protesters was ten times worse'. Imagine how many millions of Iranians would turn out if the Iranian Army moved into Azadi Square and guaranteed the safety of the protesters in full view of the foreign media and their 24/7 coverage of it? Millions more than the 200,000 Egyptian protesters who turned out at Tahreer Sq. last week for sure.

IRI's hypocritical coverage of the Egyptian protests was followed by the Supreme Leader's sermon made in Arabic, last Friday. It was incitement, interference and manipulation and all the sort of things he was accusing others of doing during last year's protests in Iran.

Now Moussavi and Karroubi have asked for something which should act as the litmus test of IRI's sincerity in backing the legitimate demands of the Egyptian protesters. In an open letter to Mostafa Najar, Iran's interior minister, they have asked for a permit to stage a rally on Monday, 14th February in solidarity with the people of Egypt. According to the Iranian constitution, there should be no reason what so ever to oppose the permit and if they really are sincere about the plight of Egyptian people, why shouldn't such a rally be permitted? If they oppose the permit or simply do not reply, the Egyptian people should be made aware that IRI is not worried about them but pursuing its own agenda. They did not liberate the people of Iran, they will not liberate Egyptians, Palestinians or any other people.