UPDATE: Tuesday, June 16 — Reportedly seven people were killed at the Monday rally.
My heart goes out to the Iranian people. They were so excited, so enthusiastic about their election and what looked like a very real opportunity to vote in a new era for their nation.
Then the repressive Iranian government moved in and began jamming electronic communications and shutting down social networking, print media, and international reporting. The dust had not yet settled when the winner was announced — Ahmadinejad. Forty million handwritten ballots had been counted in a matter of hours. Suspicious, to say the least.
Hundreds of thousands of Mousavi supporters rallied today in Tehran for a third day of protest as the world watches and waits to see how the matter is resolved. There’s nothing outsiders can or should do, but as unarmed students continue to challenge the power and authority of their government, one can’t help but wish them well.
The only real surprise so far is that the demonstrations have been allowed to continue for this long; dictators generally don’t tolerate embarrassing public opposition. I’d love to see the people of Iran win this one.
2 thoughts on “Iranian demonstrators won’t be silenced”
I’m definitely with you on this one. Nothing would tickle me more than to see ‘Imajihad’ get kicked to the curb. I too, was wondering why this whole thing wasn’t squashed immediately, the whole world is watching… I wish them all the best of luck in getting justice in their elections. You never know, they may pull this off. I hope so.
I saw a very interesting analysis last night about how these demonstrations are being carefully orchestrated to be non-violent, to not advocate overthrow of the government but to just ask where their votes are, to chant only peaceful things like Allah is Great, etc. It gives the government no excuse for a big public crackdown (not that a dictator ever needs one), and in theory just wears it down with peaceful persistence. The big march today is supposed to be strictly a memorial to remember the seven people who died Monday, and if more should die, then another memorial march for them, and so on. Tomorow’s rally will mark one week since the election was held.
I believe the reason why the rallies have been allowed to continue is due to the Iranian leadership, having underestimated the will of their people; they did not forsee such an overwhelming response and were ill-prepared for it.
Sadly, the demonstrations won’t bring about immediate changes. They will, however, initiate changes and promises of progress.
I’ve had a mental picture of the Iranian leaders sitting around in private scratching their heads and trying to figure out the best way to deal with all this while not giving up control of the country.