Tag Archives: iran

Observations of an ex pat: Iranian ripples

Donald Trump has dropped a massive boulder in the world’s diplomatic pond. Its ripples will be felt in every corner of the globe and in some cases the ripples could quickly grow  to tsunami proportions.

Let’s start with the epicentre– the Middle East. The region is already peppered with smouldering short fuses: The Arab-Israeli conflict; Syrian civil war; Yemeni civil war; Turks v. Kurd; Qataris v Saudis and Emirates; Saudis v. Iran; The Russian presence; threatened American withdrawal; Hezbollah… .

The Iran Nuclear Accord (aka Joint Consultative Plan of Action) was one of the region’s few diplomatic success stories—albeit a limited one.

Since President Trump announced American withdrawal from the Accord, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khameini has announced that his country will resume work on building a nuclear weapon.

In return, Israel has bombed an Iranian base outside Damascus; announced the preparation of bomb shelters; called up reservists for air defence, intelligence and home front command units and deployed missile defence batteries in Northern Israel.

Iran’s Army Chief of Staff, Major General Mohamed Bagheri, warned: “If the enemy casts a covetous eye on our interests or conducts even a slight act of aggression, the Islamic Republic will give an appropriate response at an appropriate time.”

Back in Washington they are celebrating. Not the problems in the Middle East, but the release of three American citizens from North Korean prison.  President Trump hailed the release as a diplomatic triumph for his administration and the best of auguries for his forthcoming summit with Pyongyang’s Kim Jong-un.

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Iran Protests – Ayatolld me not to come…that ain’t the way to have fun



So Iran is back in the news again; there’s always something fun going on there! The country seems to have exploded in protests, something many analysts had previously thought near impossible. These protests are complex and still evolving (having only started December 28th), appearing to be various forms of cathartic action with outpourings of anger over food price increases, strict religious rule and corruption. Somewhat negligently, analysts appear not to have predicted instability in Iran (despite the high/volatile food prices, young population and regional instability).

In 2009 the so-called ‘Green Revolution’ made headlines: a series of large protests in response to what people saw as a fixed election. Whilst Iran is not quite a dictatorship, it is not quite a democracy. People do vote for a President and parliament, however, the religious leadership and Ayatollah tightly vet which candidates are even allowed to run. Furthermore the actual authority of the political leadership is capped, as religious figures control the powerful Revolutionary Guard, therefore dictating nuclear and foreign policy. The main differences, however, between the protests we’re seeing now and those of the Green Revolution is that the former were primarily in Tehran and attended mainly by the middle and upper classes. These protests are largely being driven by lower socio-economic status rural and non-Tehranis. This group has long been seen as the Ayatollah’s base and was assumed to be subservient if not content, and their dissent indicates that we may be about to see something big.

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LibLink: Mark Williams on happiness, which is still ground for punishment in Iran

 

Mark Williams has written an article for The Hill, the Washington based news source. Under the eye-catching headline “Happiness is still ground for punishment in Iran” Mark writes:

A couple of years ago, Western audiences were noticeably shocked at the news that several Iranian youths had been arrested for the “crime” of dancing together and posting a video of themselves celebrating life to the strains of an American pop song called “Happy.” It was one in a long series of vivid reminders of repression in Iran. But unfortunately it was one of only a few that have gained significant traction in the Western media. It left the European and American public with the right idea about the Islamic Republic, but also with a potentially incomplete picture of how serious and how pervasive the problem is.

He explains that the incident took place soon after the reportedly moderate Hassan Rouhani had taken over as President, and there was hope that things would change under his leadership.  But hopes were dashed.

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William Wallace writes… Sources of UK extremism

Part of our role in both houses of Parliament is to hold the government to the commitments they – often reluctantly – give.  One of the five conditions Lib Dem parliamentarians established in return for supporting the extensions of air operations over Iraq to Syria was that the government should set up an enquiry into sources of funding for extremist versions of Islam within the UK.  Alastair Carmichael in the Commons, and myself in the Lords, are holding the Conservatives to the promise they made to report on this by ‘the Spring of 2016’. Alastair has pressed ministers on the size and quality of the ‘Extremism Analysis Unit’ set up in the Home Office to cover this.  I asked an oral question in the Lords yesterday (February 3rd) on how thoroughly overseas funding will be investigated, from both foreign government and from private sources. In both cases, the answers have been that the government is acting on this commitment, but there are clear reasons why we should continue to put pressure on them to deliver.

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Paddy: Tension between Iran and Saudi Arabia “a far greater danger” than ISIL

Paddy Ashdown has told the Independent that the growing tension between Saudi Arabia and Iran in the wake of the Saudi executions carried out over the weekend is “a far greater danger” than ISIL. He said that the UK Government should be robust about calling the Saudis out for their actions:

Lord Ashdown said Saudi Arabia’s sudden mass execution of prisoners – including the prominent Shia cleric Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr and a number of young political protesters – may have been intended to derail the ongoing Syrian peace talks in Vienna.

These executions are deeply, deeply destabilising to the very delicate situation that exists in the Middle East and the danger of a wider Sunni and Shia conflict. The West, including the UK government, is only just realising the danger of this and its implications for long term peace in the region. It poses a far greater danger in the long term than, for example, Isil,” the former Lib Dem leader added.

The UK Government should be making it explicitly clear that it regards this act as extremely destabilising. These executions are shocking in human rights terms and reveal the real nature of the people with whom we are dealing. The UK’s stance underlines its deeply illogical position of ignoring the funding of jihadist groups, including Isil, which is coming from within Saudi Arabia.

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LibLink: Lord Carlile – UK must speak up against sharp rise of executions in Iran

Stop executions in Iran protest Trafalgar square by helen.2006 or helen61 CCL on FlickrWriting on PoliticsHome, Alex (Lord) Carlile calls on the British government to condemn the situation in Iran, where there have been just short of 700 executions this year:

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Will Israel attack Iran, and will this break the Coalition?

Although not widely reported in the British media, there is a build up of expectation that Israel will attack Iran. It amazes me that this was barely discussed at our recent Brighton conference. There were two motions on this submitted for conference but both with rejected by Federal Conference Committee and, perhaps as a consequence, there were no foreign policy motions debated at conference.

To raise the question I had to wait until Tuesday when there were two Centre Forum fringe meetings on foreign policy. Neither of the fringe meetings was specifically on Iran, but the question was asked about what …

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LibLink: Ming Campbell – Afghanistan: We have to see it through till 2014

Former Lib Dem leader Sir Ming Campbell has taken to the pages of the Independent to set out his views on British troop involvement in Afghanistan, and the need to be realistic about the speed at which British troops can be withdrawn from Helmand. Here’s an excerpt:

It is naive to suggest that, even if we began today, we could be out by Christmas. Withdrawal of nearly 10,000 troops and their equipment is not achieved by waving a wand. During any withdrawal, forces are at their most vulnerable. What additional protection measures would be required? What equipment would we be able

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Opinion: Iran v. West – breaking the deadlock

George Bernard Shaw used to say that political necessities sometime turn out to be political mistakes. As things stand in ongoing negotiations between the West and Iran, this seems to be the parallel for what is going to happen in yet another round of talks later this month in Russia. Let us consider the current balance of actions.

Iranian Religious leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, in his recent appearance publically accused West of fabricating information about Iran’s nuclear progress to cover up its own problems. In the same speech he warned that Israeli military action against his country will me bet with …

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Opinion: Memo to Jeremy Browne MP

Dear Jeremy,

Thank you very much for your typically robust performance on BBC TV’s Question Time last night. However I wish to counsel you against using the prospect of war with Iran as a vehicle to demonstrate your resolve, and the Party’s new-found ‘establishment’ credentials. Your political future, and maybe even your personal freedom, are at stake here….

In the debate you not only expressed your support for blockade-type unilateral sanctions, that do not have UN support, but also you gave the distinct impression that you were in favour of the UK joining a major war against Iran.

The recent rise …

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Opinion: the dangers of a new Middle East conflagration

Storm clouds are gathering over whether Iran should be invaded as a pre-emptive strike to prevent its manufacture of nuclear weapons. Already, Israel seems to be moving pro-actively, while the subject would have been discussed by Cameron during his trip to Saudi Arabia. The US has initiated the tightening of economic sanctions against Iran and has raised its naval profile in the Persian Gulf, though it would clearly prefer to postpone any military action until after the US Presidential election in November. Meanwhile, are the various diplomatic manoeuvres around Syria a rehearsal for future action against Iran?

Very great caution …

Posted in Europe / International and Op-eds | Also tagged | 8 Comments

Opinion: War with Iran? Where’s the scrutiny

One of the great benefits of democracy over totalitarianism is its ability to criticize openly and scrutinize the major decisions of government. If weight of public and political opinion is against a particular decision, there are inevitably dissenters within the machinery of government. Whilst this doesn’t prevent damaging and foolhardy decisions from being made, it does strengthen the hand of these dissenters within the government hierarchy. This usually has the effect of limiting the damage, and speeding up both the reversal of the decision as well as the learning of lessons.

This was apparent in the case of the Iraq war. …

Posted in Europe / International and Op-eds | 9 Comments

Opinion: Foreign policy lessons for the Lib Dem approach to Iran

The Green movement in Iran after the presidential elections in 2009 was the first of the recent popular backlashes against entrenched corruption in authoritarian regimes. That was followed by the Arab spring, continuing upheaval in Egypt and now a similar movement in Russia and elsewhere.

At the time of the electoral protests in Tehran, Iranian staff at the British embassy were being accused by the Iranian authorities of treason and fomenting unrest. There was only muted support for the reform movement in Iran from the international community.

Last month we saw the British Embassy in Tehran ransacked and vandalised

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Opinion: European Liberal Democrat Parties vote against war with Iran

At the 2011 Annual Congress of the European Liberal Democratic and Reform (ELDR) parties in Palermo last week, a major initiative from the UK Lib Dems was the successful tabling of an emergency resolution on the growing likelihood of war with Iran. Media and intelligence reports have described the ‘planned’ action as a multi-pronged attack on Iran by the United States and Israel, with military support from the United Kingdom and Canada. In Palermo, the UK Lib Dem resolution against the war, and against European involvement, was passed with a large majority. The ELDR resolution also condemned Iran for not …

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Dear God: if you exist, I like your sense of humour

Via UPI:

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad accused European countries Saturday of using weather control to deprive is country and other Muslim nations of rain.

The president made the charge while opening a dam in Arak, Murkazi province, The Daily Telegraph reported. Immediately after he spoke, rain began falling.

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Cameron admits foreign policy gaffe, mis-speaks that “Iran has got a nuclear weapon.”

There will be red faces in Number 10 tonight after the latest foreign policy gaffe from David Cameron. Speaking today at his one of his PM Direct events, the Conservative leader stuck up for Turkey’s application to join the EU, stating it would be able to help Europe address a number of issues:

I think be a good political influence because they can help us solve some of the world’s problems like the Middle East peace process, like the fact Iran has got a nuclear weapon.”

Except Iran doesn’t have a nuclear weapon. His advisors later clarified that Mr Cameron …

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Daily View 2×2: 17 January 2010

It’s Sunday. It’s 7am. It’s time for a trip down political memory lane, but first the news.

2 Must-Read Blog Posts

What are other Liberal Democrat bloggers saying? Here’s are two posts that have caught the eye from the Liberal Democrat Blogs aggregator:

Spotted any other great posts in the last day from blogs that aren’t on the aggregator? Do post up a comment sharing them with us all.

2 Big Stories

Consideration of new Iran sanctions has begun

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Daily View 2×2: 27 December 2009

It’s Sunday. It’s 7am. It’s time for the Chicken Song, but first the news.

2 Must-Read Blog Posts

What are other Liberal Democrat bloggers saying? Here’s are two posts that have caught the eye from the Liberal Democrat Blogs aggregator:

Spotted any other great posts in the last day from blogs that aren’t on the aggregator? Do post up a comment sharing them with us all.

2 Big Stories

Renewed clashes reported in Iran

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Daily View 2×2: 30 November 2009

Welcome to a new week, and the anniversary of the end of the invasion of Iraq … first time round, that is – Operation Desert Storm officially finished in 1995. And happy birthday to David Mamet, Billy Idol, Lorraine Kelly and Gary Lineker and Gael García Bernal. On with the day …

2 Must-Read Blog Posts

What are other Liberal Democrat bloggers saying? Here’s are two posts that have caught the eye from the Liberal Democrat Blogs aggregator:

Richmond Park: Lib Dem Hold (Jonathan Calder)

… some will ask how extraordinary personal wealth can be squared with [his’ talk in an

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Daily View 2×2: 29 November 2009

It’s Sunday. It’s 7am. It’s time for cats, but first blogs and the news.

2 Must-Read Blog Posts

What are other Liberal Democrat bloggers saying? Here’s are two posts that have caught the eye from the Liberal Democrat Blogs aggregator:

Spotted any other great posts in the last day from blogs that aren’t on the aggregator? Do post up a comment sharing them with us all.

2 Big Stories

Apologies for those of you, such as the editors of our rolling news TV channels who believe that a sportsman having a minor car accident should be the top story in the news with specially extended coverage. Apparently there is other stuff going on in the world, involving minor matters such as nuclear weapons and global climate change negotiations. And so…

Iranian lawmaker: Iran could leave nuclear treaty

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Daily View 2×2: 4 October 2009

It’s Sunday. It’s 7am. It’s time for the Daily View, today with an election night special.

2 Big Stories

David Cameron stalls on Europe

David Cameron bravely stuck his neck out by, er…, insisting that the Tories “could only have one policy at once”. Not multitaskers then:

David Cameron has refused to give an unequivocal commitment to a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty, after Irish voters delivered a 67% “Yes” vote.

The Tory leader promised a vote on the treaty should his party win the election – but only if it had not been ratified by all EU member states.

He said the Tories “could only have one policy at once”, and he did not want to prejudice decisions in other countries. (BBC)

Report says Iran has data to make atom bomb

A confidential analysis by staff of the U.N. nuclear watchdog has concluded that Iran has acquired “sufficient information to be able to design and produce” an atom bomb. (Reuters)

2 Must-Read Blog Posts

Sunday Bonus

Now this is how election night coverage should be done:

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Daily View 2×2: 9 August 2009

The rest of The Voice’s Daily View team may have decided to have a lie in each morning during August, but we’re made of sterner stuff here on the Sunday slot (for the moment). And as it’s a Sunday, it’s also time for another instalment of singing.

2 Big Stories

UK ‘may have 40-year Afghan role’

So reports the BBC:

The UK’s commitment to Afghanistan could last for up to 40 years, the incoming head of the Army has said.

Gen Sir David Richards, who takes over on 28 August, told the Times that “nation-building” would last decades.

Troops will be required for the medium term only, but the UK will continue to play a role in “development, governance security sector reform,” he said.

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Daily View 2×2: 2 August 2009

The rest of The Voice’s Daily View team may have decided to have a lie in each morning during August, but we’re made of sterner stuff here on the Sunday slot. And as it’s a Sunday, this time by popular demand (sort of) there’s a special bonus social networking meets beards sing-a-long supplement.

2 Big Stories

Iranian protesters go on trial

Forcing critics of a government to recant in implausible public confessions is both a display of a regime’s power but also of a display of absurdity. If it makes people fear that power it strengthens the regime, but if it makes people ridicule that absurdity it weakens it. So far in Iran it seems to be doing at least some of the latter:

Iran’s biggest reformist party has dismissed the court appearance of 100 people, including leading opposition figures, as a “laughable show trial”.

The accused are on trial for alleged involvement in post-election violence, on charges including acting against national security and vandalism.

Pro-government media reported what they said were confessions by some of the leading reformists.

But the party, Mosharekat, said the “confessions” had been forced.

It said “even a cooked chicken” would laugh at the charges.

Kasra Naji, special correspondent for BBC Persian Television, says the timing and scale of the trial came as a surprise and suggests Iran’s leadership wants to send a message to stop any more protests.

But judging from messages on micro-blogging site twitter and the internet, our correspondent says, the move may have the opposite effect, with several people talking about the need for new demonstrations and calling those on trial “national heroes”. (BBC)

Immigration

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Daily View 2×2: 19 July 2009

Welcome to the Sunday outing for The Voice’s near-daily Daily View series. As it’s a Sunday, today it comes with a special epic mustache bonanza. Not just any old mustaches you understand.

2 Big Stories

Iran: public criticism of senior figures is becoming the norm

Former President – and opponent of current President – Ali Akbar Rafsanjani has been speaking out. As the BBC reports:

By calling for an open debate about the election result, Mr Rafsanjani was almost openly challenging the supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
Four weeks ago, from the same pulpit, Mr Khamenei called for an end to discussion about an election result which he declared had been blessed by God.
Former President Rafsanjani played his trump card, by referring to his friendship with the founder of the Islamic Republic, Ayatollah Khomeini.
He quoted Ayatollah Khomeini in ways that appeared to support the opposition’s right to demonstrate.
Mr Rafsanjani even called for protesters who have been arrested to be released from prison.

First World War veteran Henry Allingham dies

As the Guardian puts it:

Born in 1896 to an ironmonger’s wife in a corner of north-east London, the veteran, whose life spanned three centuries and six monarchs, was 67 when John F Kennedy was assassinated and 73 when Neil Armstrong walked on the moon…

He remembered spending a night in a shellhole in Flanders. “It stank,” he said. “So did I when I fell into it. Arms and legs, dead rats, dead everything. Rotten flesh. Human guts. I couldn’t get a bath for three or four months afterwards.”

2 Must-Read Blog Posts

  • Nich Starling continues to be the must-read blog for coverage of what’s happening on the ground in the Norwich North by-election. This time he’s got the tale of the Conservative campaign’s highly targeted approach to blogger outreach.
  • Readers of my blog will know of my views about the lack of media interest in Mark Cavendish’s sporting triumphs. (Equalling the British lifetime record for Tour de Franch stage wins, and still only being 24, wasn’t enough to get him into the top 95 stories on Sky News.) If he was getting the sort of coverage his successes deserve, yesterday’s controversial disqualification would be all over the mainstream media. Instead, head over to Stephen’s Linlithgow Journal for the Mark Cavendish disqualification story.

Sunday Bonus

Mustaches of the epic variety:

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Daily View 2×2: 29 June 2009

2 Big Stories

Gordon Brown plans to spend his way back into Number 10
From the Telegraph:

Mr Brown’s determination to boost spending on frontline services will be underlined with the launch of his much vaunted national plan for public services on Monday.

His Building Britain’s Future document includes a number of proposals which will require significant Government spending.

Peter Mandelson, however, has emphasised that the money will come from a “reprioritising of expenditure both within and between departments”:

He told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “It may be a disappointment to you that we are not going to hold a spending review now

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Daily View 2×2: 21 June 2009

Welcome to the Sunday outing for The Voice’s Daily View series. As it’s a Sunday, today it comes with a special Obama in tights extravaganza.

2 Big Stories

Iranian protests continue despite crackdown

The BBC reports:

Iranian police have used water cannon, batons, tear gas and live rounds to break up protests over the presidential election, witnesses in Tehran say.

A BBC reporter said he saw one man shot and others injured amid running fights

Defeated candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi repeated calls for the election to be annulled on the grounds it was rigged.

Their round-up page for the latest Iranian news is well worth a visit, bringing together reports, analysis and background information all in one place, not to mention links through to where Iranian news is coming through on social media sites.

Gordon Brown: stay or go?

News of the World on Gordon Brown: “He WILL be leading the party at the next election”
Mail on Sunday on Gordon Brown: “Plans to quit before next election to avoid humiliating defeat”

Trust that’s clear. So on we go…

2 Must-Read Blog Posts

Peter Black buys, and reads, the Telegraph
Meanwhile, Neil Stockley has been looking at the polls

Sunday Bonus

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Twitter and the rise of new media

Something fascinating happened yesterday. I was browsing through one of the internet forums I regularly visit when I noticed someone posting that people should go to the Daily Mail poll page on their website and vote yes to the poll that asks “Should gypsies jump the queue on the NHS?” in order to mess with them.

When I got to the page and duly voted “Yes” I was astonished to see that the poll was at 93% Yes and 7% No. The forum I refer to has nowhere near enough people to make a dent in the thousands who vote in …

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Iran: what is unfolding?

The events that have begun to unfold in Iran over the past week are, as Western media continues to point out, seismic.

Undoubtedly this is a story which will, regardless of whether the protests succeed, have huge ramifications for the politics of the Middle East. I want to do three things – first, put a little perspective on the magnitude of the events, second, draw your attention to some of the best stuff from the vast amount of coverage, and then make a more general point about coverage of this event.

Much has been made of the fact that 60% of the population in under 30, and therefore wasn’t even born at the time of the 1979 Revolution. This is a significant fact, because it is the young, as one might expect, who are forming the backbone of the push for change inside Iran. They were the constituency that Mir-Hossein Mousavi most managed to excite, along with his wife, Zahra Rahnavard, who is hugely popular among Iranian women too.

That said, the protests are increasingly drawing people from all sectors of society – from the garbage men to the doctors and nurses, all kinds of groups have turned out to protest in their own way. Importantly, there is a sizeable and growing section of the Islamic Republic’s establishment which believes the vote-rigging, antics of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and even some of the public pronouncements of the Supreme Leader, Ali Khamenei, are not in the spirit of the 1979 Revolution, and not sustainable as approach to governance.

Today is the fifth consecutive day of massive protests in Tehran, with the figures reportedly surpassing Monday’s high, and now reaching around a million. Consider this: the Iraq war protests in the UK drew a million, but they were publicised in advance, highly accessible and totally unrestricted and so forth. These protests are having to be spread by word of mouth, often with just a day’s notice, and all while the government is:

  1. Threatening people who attend in a variety of ways (cold calling individuals to tell them they were spotted at a protest and are going to be arrested, threatening the death penalty for protesting)
  2. Spreading misinformation that the protests have been cancelled
  3. Not allowing the rallies to be publicised on the entirely state-controlled television, or in the papers, or via social networking sites (Iranian twitter and Facebook traffic is down 90%, with the rest having to use secret proxy servers)
  4. Keeping down the SMS service, and limiting domestic phone calls in parts of the country
  5. Organising its own rallies to intimidate the protestors

Giving free reign to the extreme, paramilitary, Revolutionary Guard-affiliated, armed organisation known as the Basij to terrorise protestors.

Many are pointing out that a lot of the tactics used by the protestors (calling pro-Mousavi slogans from their windows at night, organising ‘mourning’ rallies like the one held on today were also signature ones of the 1979 Revolution, and that one of the key stages in the 1979 events – when the police refused to attack protestors and started joining them – is starting to happen now. Nevertheless, we’re far from a revolution at the moment. For one thing, those leading the protests are largely drawn from the old guard of 1979, and so want the Islamic Republic merely to reform itself and become more democratic, rather than the whole thing being brought down and replaced. Given the fact that revolutions tend to get hijacked by the more hardline elements anyway (1979, but also most revolutions going back to the French one of 1789, shows that), it’s probably not a bad thing that if these protests succeed, we’ll see a reasonable degree of reform rather than a wholly new system.

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Daily View 2×2: 18 June 2009

Welcome to Daily View. Happy birthday to Delia Smith CBE. Today is also Autistic Pride Day.

2 Big Stories

And it’s good news for Burnley Liberal Democrats as sub-editors across the spectrum studiously avoid the headline “The Fall of the House of Ussher

Miss Ussher said that she was leaving the Government “with the greatest regret” but would remain as MP for Burnley until the coming election, when she will stand down from Parliament “for family reasons”.

Burnley PPC Gordon Birtwhistle, who has steered the party through taking outright control of the borough council last year, and gaining five of the six …

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Daily View 2×2: 17 June 2009

2 big stories

No prizes for guessing it’s Iran above the fold again today. After ruling out a votes recount, the ruling forces had this to say, which is of some interest to anyone who gets their political news online:

Following a crackdown on the foreign press, the Revolutionary Guards, Iran’s most powerful military force, warned online media of similar treatment over their coverage of the country’s election crisis.

In its first statement since the crisis broke out, the guards – an elite force answering to the supreme leader – said Iranian websites and bloggers must remove any materials that “create tension”

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Recent Comments

  • User AvatarJohn Marriott 16th Aug - 6:39pm
    @frankie You said; “i(sic) don’t think you understand what ‘status quo’ means”. Of course I understand what ‘status quo’ means. That’s why I wrote ‘status...
  • User AvatarLittle Jackie Paper 16th Aug - 6:17pm
    Nigel Jones - 'He tried to put the issue more personally by asking her what she felt her action would do to the black immigrant...
  • User AvatarLittle Jackie Paper 16th Aug - 6:11pm
    David Allen - 'Do Lib Dems want to argue that poor-white UKIP voters have got it all round their necks, and that what they really...
  • User AvatarDavid Evershed 16th Aug - 6:10pm
    The responsibility for prisoners being re-settled must fall primarily on the prisoners themselves. Lib Dems should surely encourage self help rather than dependence. Outside intervention...
  • User Avatarfrankie 16th Aug - 6:04pm
    Martin, I fear at least one of the first two commentators fails to read the comments as well. 😉
  • User Avatarfrankie 16th Aug - 6:01pm
    John, You obviously didn't get past the first two sentences of my post did you, I think I answered your quote more than adequetely. You...