July 21, 2009 Continue reading
The propaganda campaign to paint the victory of the incumbent candidate in Iran’s June presidential election as having been a stolen one began early. Even before the election, the seed was being planted that the election would be stolen to give President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad a win. This narrative played nicely into the hands of the reformist opposition candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi, who cried foul following the favorable results for the incumbent. But what evidence is there to support this narrative?
In one prominent example, on June 7, five days before Iran’s presidential election, the website Tehran Bureau reported:
In an open letter, a group of employees of Iran’s Interior Ministry (which supervises the elections) warned the nation that a hard-line ayatollah, who supports President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, has issued a Fatwa authorizing changing votes in the incumbent’s favor.
by Gary Sudborough
27 June 2009
There seems to be a great divergence of opinion among liberals and leftists about what is really happening in Iran. There are those who think Iran is in somewhat of a vacuum and is only trying to have a democratic election against theocracy and a repressive attitude to women’s rights. Other leftists think because the Bush administration in the past had contemplated military action and also covert actions by the CIA against Iran that these facts, among others, argue for an attempted coup taking place, especially given the enormous number of successful and unsuccessful CIA coups which have occurred in the past 60 years. I have an excellent book entitled Killing Hope-US military and CIA interventions since World War 2 by William Blum. I would say that the only countries or continents not to have at least CIA spies in them would be places like Greenland or Antarctica that have little interest for multinational corporations because they are covered with huge ice sheets. Of course, this could change with global warming. You might be served a burger and fries by an Eskimo at the grand opening of McDonalds in Greenland.
The arrogance of Empire is so pervasive, so intrinsic to our everyday lives, that it seems ‘natural’ for us to be telling other countries how to behave, what’s right and what’s wrong. This is brought home to me every day as I struggle through the vast stream of news that flows into my inbox. The sheer weight of corporate/state media output is staggering, but especially the seamless integration of the ‘take’ on a story, regardless of country of origin.
Of course there’s no active collusion between the handful of media conglomerates that control the flow of ‘news’, there doesn’t need to be; they take their cues from their respective governments as to what the ‘message’ should be.
This is most apparent in the way the media have presented the unfurling drama in Iran, a drama whose direction has been shaped directly through the intervention of the Western media machine. Regardless of the ‘take’ the Western media has—their centrality to transmitting messages to millions in the West—the media inevitably has become part of the message. So powerful is the global media machine how could it be otherwise?
June 26, 2009
MEXICO CITY, Mexico (CNN) — The United States may have been behind the killing of Neda Agha-Soltan, the 26-year-old Iranian woman whose fatal videotaped shooting Saturday made her a symbol of opposition to the June 12 presidential election results, the country’s ambassador to Mexico said Thursday.
“This death of Neda is very suspicious,” Ambassador Mohammad Hassan Ghadiri said. “My question is, how is it that this Miss Neda is shot from behind, got shot in front of several cameras, and is shot in an area where no significant demonstration was behind held?”
He suggested that the CIA or another intelligence service may have been responsible.
“Well, if the CIA wants to kill some people and attribute that to the government elements, then choosing women is an appropriate choice, because the death of a woman draws more sympathy,” Ghadiri said.
In response, CIA spokesman George Little said, “Any suggestion that the CIA was responsible for the death of this young woman is wrong, absurd and offensive.”
Though the video appeared to show that she had been shot in the chest, Ghadiri said that the bullet was found in her head and that it was not of a type used in Iran.
CIA Killed Neda?
June 26, 2009
Vodpod videos no longer available.
The American media’s one-sided and propagandistic coverage of the Iranian election has made an American hero out of the defeated candidate, Mousavi.
This leaves one wondering if anyone anywhere in the US media or US government knows that Mir-Hossein Mousavi, who served as prime minister of the Islamic Republic of Iran from 1981 to 1989, the decade following the overthrow of the American puppet government by Khomeini, has been fingered as the Butcher of Beirut, responsible for the bloody attacks on the US embassy and Marine Corps barracks in Beirut during the Reagan administration that blew to pieces 241 US Marines, Sailors, and Army troops.
According to Jeff Stein writing in the June 22, 2009, CQ Politics, Mousavi “personally selected his point man for the Beirut terror campaign, Ali Akbar Mohtashemi-pur,” who presided over the terror cell responsible for the attacks.
June 23, 2009
Here are two short clips I edited and transcribed of Noam Chomsky answering questions about the Iranian elections.
Iranian People Speak:
Noam Chomsky’s hour interview on WorldStreams Radio on June 17, 2009:
Text of flyer I handed out at Riverside Church on Friday June 12th:
by Gary Sudborough
crossposted at http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2009/06/433020.html
24 June 2009
What is happening today in Iran is a classic example of a CIA destabilization operation and has absolutely nothing to do with democracy as many even on the so-called left believe. Iran has a lot of oil and its strategic location for US imperialism can simply not be overemphasized.
When the Shah of Iran was overthrown in January 1979, a moderate, bourgeois-democratic pro-Western one, led by Prime Minister Shapour Bakhtiar, replaced his government. Although for most of his time in power the Shah had been content to reign as a Constitutional monarch, he became increasingly enamored of himself as a potential dictator. In 1975, he had abolished multi-party government and installed himself as the head of a one-party state. He literally outlawed all other parties than his own. He labeled members of the principal opposition party, the Tudeh, “traitors” (are you listening, Coulter, Limbaugh and Le-vin?). He in effect declared, in words that might sound familiar to citizens of the United States, “you are either with us or against us.”
By Esam Al-Amin
June 22, 2009
A Hard Look at the Numbers
Since the June 12 Iranian presidential elections, Iran “experts” have mushroomed like bacteria in a Petri dish. So here is a quiz for all those instant experts. Which major country has elected more presidents than any in the world since 1980? Further, which nation is the only one that held ten presidential elections within thirty years of its revolution?
The answer to both questions, of course, is Iran. Since 1980, it has elected six presidents, while the U.S. is a close second with five, and France at three. In addition, the U.S. held four presidential elections within three decades of its revolution to Iran’s ten.
The Iranian elections have unified the left and the right in the West and unleashed harsh criticisms and attacks from the “outraged” politicians to the “indignant” mainstream media. Even the blogosphere has joined this battle with near uniformity, on the side of Iran’s opposition, which is quite rare in cyberspace.
Much of the allegations of election fraud have been just that: unsubstantiated accusations. No one has yet been able to provide a solid shred of evidence of wide scale fraud that would have garnered eleven million votes for one candidate over his opponent.
Iran Falls to US PSYOPS
President Obama called on the Iranian government to allow protesters to control the streets in Tehran. Would Obama or any US president allow protesters to control the streets in Washington, D.C.?
There was more objective evidence that George W. Bush stole his two elections than there is at this time of election theft in Iran. But there was no orchestrated media campaign to discredit the US government.
On May 16, 2007, the London Telegraph reported that Bush regime official John Bolton told the Telegraph that a US military attack on Iran would “be a ‘last option’ after economic sanctions and attempts to foment a popular revolution had failed.”
We are now witnessing in Tehran US “attempts to foment a popular revolution” in the guise of another CIA orchestrated “color revolution.” It is possible that splits among the mullahs themselves brought about by their rival ambitions will aid and abet what the Telegraph (May 27, 2007) reported were “CIA plans for a propaganda and disinformation campaign intended to destabilize, and eventually topple, the theocratic rule of the mullahs.” It is certainly a fact that the secularized youth of Tehran have played into the CIA’s hands.
by Peter Symonds
22 June 2009
The protests in Tehran over the weekend have served to highlight the limited social base of the political opponents of the dominant faction of the Iranian clerical regime. The opposition movement has not only failed to draw in broader layers of working people, but has markedly weakened.
From the outset, the color-coded campaign to replace incumbent President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad with Mir Hossein Mousavi has been a highly orchestrated political operation backed by the US and managed by dissident elements of the ruling elite—in particular, former president and billionaire businessman Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani—for their own ends.
There is nothing progressive in their aims. Insofar as they have differences with their erstwhile associates, Mousavi and his supporters are seeking to shift policies further to the right through a more rapid accommodation with the US and a drastic acceleration of the program of market reform. They make no appeal to working people, for whom such a program can only mean economic devastation, and base themselves on sections of the bourgeoisie and more privileged and frankly selfish layers of the urban middle classes.
Iranians do not need or want us to teach them about liberty and representative government. They have long embodied this struggle. It is we who need to be taught. It was Washington that orchestrated the 1953 coup to topple Iran’s democratically elected government, the first in the Middle East, and install the compliant shah in power. It was Washington that forced Prime Minister Mohammed Mossadegh, a man who cared as much for his country as he did for the rule of law and democracy, to spend the rest of his life under house arrest. We gave to the Iranian people the corrupt regime of the shah and his savage secret police and the primitive clerics that rose out of the swamp of the dictator’s Iran. Iranians know they once had a democracy until we took it away.