Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Mark LeVine in Al Jazeera: Obama's strategies failing in Iran

LeVine writes,
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the Iranian president, and Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the supreme leader, do not fear the US but rather their own people's desire to live in a country more like the US.

In fact, in poll after poll Iranians have revealed themselves to be among the most pro-American and pro-democratic people in the Muslim majority world.

The Iranian government needs little excuse to beat, jail, and otherwise punish its citizens. It is already doing a thorough enough job without US interference, and seems poised to go even further. However, if it goes too far it risks "losing legitimacy in the eyes of its own people," as Obama said at a June 25 press conference.

Obama is acutely aware of the real reason why he cannot be too forceful in supporting the millions of Iranians demanding to have their votes counted. The problem is not with US administrations long past, but with the policies of the current administration.

The fact is that the US counts as its closest allies in the Middle East regimes who routinely rig elections - if they even bother to hold them at all - which produce governments that are far less legitimate than Ahmadinejad's today.
No mention of Iraq and Democracy though. Home to the Persian Ayatollah Sistani in Najaf preaching clerics should stay out of government. But at least LeVine got the Iranian people right: the most pro-American and pro-democratic people in the Muslim majority world.

We've failed them.

via Spirit of Man

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Joan Baez sings for people of Iran جون بائز: چه سعادتمندم که زنده‌ام و شاهد جنبش مردم ایران

via Radio Farda
فرهنگ و هنر / فرهنگ و هنر جهان
جون بائز: چه سعادتمندم که زنده‌ام و شاهد جنبش مردم ایران

Postmodern Progress

The conclusion from an essay in by Brink Lindsey in Reason: Nostalgianomics
Liberal economists pine for days no liberal should want to revisit.

A good deal more on this from me in the future but I think Lindsey frames the reality UUs sense but can't quite their arms around: the growth in individualistic culture: the reality that he majority of Amriecans will live the majority of their lives alone; by choice or just surviving.
Postmodern Progress

The move toward a more individualistic culture is not unique to the United States. As the political scientist Ronald Inglehart has documented in dozens of countries around the world, the shift toward what he calls “postmodern” attitudes and values is a predictable cultural response to rising affluence and expanding choices. “In a major part of the world,” he writes in his 1997 book Modernization and Postmodernization, “the disciplined, self-denying, and achievement-oriented norms of industrial society are giving way to an increasingly broad latitude for individual choice of lifestyles and individual self-expression.”

The increasing focus on individual fulfillment means, inevitably, less deference to tradition and organizations. “A major component of the Postmodern shift,” Inglehart argues, “is a shift away from both religious and bureaucratic authority, bringing declining emphasis on all kinds of authority. For deference to authority has high costs: the individual’s personal goals must be subordinated to those of a broader entity.”

Paul Krugman may long for the return of selfdenying corporate workers who declined to seek better opportunities out of organizational loyalty, and thus kept wages artificially suppressed, but these are creatures of a bygone ethos—an ethos that also included uncritical acceptance of racist and sexist traditions and often brutish intolerance of deviations from mainstream lifestyles and sensibilities.

The rise in income inequality does raise issues of legitimate public concern. And reasonable people disagree hotly about what ought to be done to ensure that our prosperity is widely shared. But the caricature of postwar history put forward by Krugman and other purveyors of nostalgianomics won’t lead us anywhere. Reactionary fantasies never do.

WaPo: White House Weighs Order on Detention

Good news. Detainees aren't criminals. They should not be sent to sham trials than locked for life in super maxes. They're combatants (fighting outside the rules of war) but when captured, best held for the duration until OBL issues the Fatwa of Surrender.

White House Weighs Order on Detention
Officials: Move Would Reassert Power To Hold Terror Suspects Indefinitely

Sogol Baharan: Fear, danger and a coming doom: my return to Iran

From The Guardian,
"I told you to get out of here," he said angrily. But after a moment he sighed, "Go away and stay away. We have the blood of our countrymen on our batons. I don't want any more on mine."

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Chicago Violence Endangers Vital Blood Supply

From CBS,
There is a real emergency for a county hospital emergency room. The uptick in violence is literally draining the blood supply.
Dr. Dennis says the reason for the shortage is the high numbers of victims of shootings and other violent crimes who come to Stroger Hospital for life-saving treatment.

"We see probably an average of between 10 and 15 people who get shot or stabbed every night," Dr. Dennis said.
Except for Father Pfleger, we hear little about our daily slaughter here either. We've gotten used to it. The uptick's gone average.

Katrina vanden Heuvel: Moral Realism without Picking Sides

Is this what Liberalism's been reduced too? KVH wrote,
Obama displayed moral realism and principled respect for the courage, dignity and sovereignty of the Iranian people. He did what Iranian expert Trita Parsi advised: condemn violence, without picking sides.
Compare that with McCain at HuffPo a few days ago,
McCain wouldn't say which side of the struggle he thought Obama was on.

"Between Ahmadinejad and the reformers, do you think there's any doubt what side President Obama is on?" McCain (R-Ariz.) was asked by the Huffington Post. "What would be the advantage...?"

"I know what side I'm on," McCain cut in. "I'm on the side of the people. I'm not on Ahmadinejad's side or Mousavi. I'm on the side of the Iranian people and I'm on the right side of history. And I'm not going to walk on the other side of the street while people are being killed and beaten in the streets of Iran."

McCain said Obama's reaction wasn't equal to the situation. "We can't sit by and watch a film clip on television of a young woman bleeding to death and say that we're worried about the Iranian reaction or our ability to negotiate with them. We have to stand up for those people," he said.
God save us from the Moral Realism that ducks picking sides. ...has been able to maintain silence about so much, that it is difficult to say what has been more pernicious in the course of time, the intolerance which committed the wrongs or the indifference which beheld them imperturbed.

CNN massacre day June 24, 2009 tehran baharestan کشت وکشتار بهارستان

via Spirit of Man and Dan Kennedy

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Welcome Conservative Grapevine Readers

Welcome to my Religion blog Conservative Grapevine Readers. Proof all secular humanistic Unitarian Universalists don't march in locked steps. (Although our organizational silence has been pretty sad this week.)

My Religion Blogs been consumed with Iran and Google Translates new Persian Feature. I also blog on Politics and Chicago here.

Thanks for your time.

Mousavi Expected to Attend Protest Outside Parliament Today

Fox reported via GateWay Pundit,
Iranian opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi is expected to attend at a rally Wednesday amid an intensifying government crackdown on protesters following the country's disputed presidential election.

Mousavi's attendance is noted on his Facebook page, and there is speculation that former President Mohammad Khatami also will attend the rally, scheduled for 4 p.m. (7:30 a.m. EDT) in Tehran's Baharestan Square, outside of the Iranian parliament.

Also on Mousavi's Facebook page, online supporters have posted that peaceful protests will be held at the same time in over 15 countries and 10 American cities.
CNN is reporting clerics joining the demonstrations now. A picture of the white turbans with the crowds.

Obama's letter to Khamenei

I think it would have been wiser for Obama to have waited until after the elections before sending these guys the long discussed letter.

Via Washington Times,
Prior to this month's disputed presidential election in Iran, the Obama administration sent a letter to the country's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, calling for an improvement in relations, according to interviews and the leader himself.

Ayatollah Khamenei confirmed the letter toward the end of a lengthy sermon last week, in which he accused the United States of fomenting protests in his country in the aftermath of the disputed June 12 presidential election.

Hot Dogs of Peace جدید سگ های صلح

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Walter Kaufmann: The Faith of a Heretic

From Kaufmann in Harper's Magazine, February 1959.
In an essay published in Germany in 1939--or rather in a book seized barely before publication by the Gestapo and destroyed except for about half-a-dozen copies--Leo Baeck, probably the, greatest rabbi of our time, said something profoundly relevant:
A good deal of church history is the history of all the things which neither hurt nor encroached upon this piety, all the outrages and all the baseness which this piety was able to tolerate with an assured and undisturbed soul and an untroubled faith. And a spirit is characterized not only by what it does but, no less, by what it permits. . . . The Christian religion, very much including Protestantism, has been able to maintain silence about so much that it is difficult to say what has been more pernicious in the course of time, the intolerance which committed the wrongs or the indifference which beheld them imperturbed.
This thought may diminish even one's affection for St. Francis, but not one's admiration for the prophets.
...in the course of time.

Al Jazeera: Fiance Of Neda Tells Of Her Last Moments

Also comment at Revolutionary Road.

CNN: Excuse me, sir. I have a message for the international community.

via CNN Iranian protester pleads for U.S., world to intervene
Mohammad: Excuse me, sir. I have a message for the international community. Would you please let me tell it?

Roberts: Yes, go ahead.

Mohammad: Americans, European Union, international community, this government is not definitely — is definitely not elected by the majority of Iranians. So it’s illegal. Do not recognize it. Stop trading with them. Impose much more sanctions against them. My message…to the international community, especially I’m addressing President Obama directly – how can a government that doesn’t recognize its people’s rights and represses them brutally and mercilessly have nuclear activities? This government is a huge threat to global peace. Will a wise man give a sharp dagger to an insane person? We need your help international community. Don’t leave us alone.

Chetry: Mohammad, what do you think the international community should do besides sanctions?

Mohammad: Actually, this regime is really dependent on importing gasoline. More than 85% of Iran’s gasoline is imported from foreign countries. I think international communities must sanction exporting gasoline to Iran and that might shut down the government.

Mousavi: General Strike

Mir Hossein Mousavi میر حسین موسوی We are(Independently) working on a gerneral Strike Plan. Please help us with your ideas if you have expertise on this issue, send plans to our email adress and write ideas as comments below.طرحی برای اعتصاب عمومی(توسط رسانه های خرد یا همان خس و خاشاک) در دست تنظیم است، طرح ها را به آدرس ایمیل صفحه، و ایده ها را در قسمت کامنت بنویسید، خصوصا اگر اطلاعات تخصصی باشدO
from Mousavi's face book.

Update: And Cyber Counter Revolution.. a comment on another post at Mousavi's face book,
@fatima and all non-iranian friends: there are some serious doubts that some of official websites of musavi's camp have been hacked and the government is trying to spread false news and gather information about the protesters through them. here our friends in musavi's page on fb, have found yet another reason to believe in this and warn the supporters to be alarmed and not to give any info to these websites

AFP: US says hot dog diplomacy still on with Iran

This is shameful.
The United States said Monday its invitations were still standing for Iranian diplomats to attend July 4 celebrations at US embassies despite the crackdown on opposition supporters.

Woman Power زن برق

From Anne Applebaum in Slate today in case anyone has doubts about what Iran's about today.
Not Obama, not Bush, and not Twitter, in other words, but years of work and effort lie behind the public display of defiance—and in particular the numbers of women on the streets. And their presence matters. For at the heart of the ideology of the Islamic republic is its claim to divine inspiration: The leadership is legitimate, and in particular its harsh repression of women is legitimate, because God has decreed that it is so. The outright rejection of this creed by tens of thousands of women, not just over the last weekend but over the last decade, has to weaken the Islamic republic's claim to invincibility in Iran and across the Middle East. The regime's political elite knows this well. It is no accident that the two main challengers to President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in the Iranian election campaign promised to repeal some of the laws that discriminate against women—and no accident that the leading challenger, Mir Hossein Mousavi, used his wife, political scientist and former university chancellor Zahra Rahnavard, in his campaign appearances and posters.

The Iranian clerics know that women pose a profound threat to their authority: As activist Ladan Boroumand has written, the regime would not bother to use brutal forms of repression against dissidents unless it feared them deeply. Nobody would have murdered a young woman in blue jeans—a peaceful, unarmed demonstrator—unless her mere presence on the street presented a dire threat.

Update: From a Q and A with Ebrahim Yazdi in Asharq Al-Awsat.
Q) In this moment in history are you optimistic or pessimistic?

A) I am optimistic for a number of reasons; firstly, God says that despondence is equal to disbelief. Secondly, at this age (78) I have seen enough ups and downs in Iran’s history to be hopeful. Thirdly, the Iranian revolution in 1979 changed Iranian society fundamentally and permanently. In these demonstrations we have witnessed in Azadi and Inqilab squares, most of the demonstrators were under thirty years of age, and many hadn’t even reached twenty. They were not alive during the revolution let alone the Shah’s regime. Where did they come from? Who taught them about politics? My answer would be that during the Iranian revolution women left their homes and took to the streets side by side with the men. They did not stay at home. What happened to those Iranian women? They have been politicized of course, by the Mullahs and not by the thousands or tens of thousands. All classes of women, from the most conservative to the most liberal. Since that time they have been politicized. Those young women who protested on the streets of Tehran thirty years ago are today mothers of this generation that has come out in their hundreds of thousands in Iran over the past few days. This is the great change that has taken place after the Iranian revolution. The public has been politicized. This is something that cannot be eliminated. Some Western observers cannot appreciate the magnitude of radical change in Iranian society after the revolution. These elections and these demonstrations clearly show the depth of change in Iran thirty years after the revolution.

Monday, June 22, 2009

The statement of Ayatollah Boroujerdi’s followers containing their union with the public movement of Iranian people

A voice that manages to speak despite the discomfort of imprisonment in Iran. Finally, a word from him, through his website.
In the name of God the beneficent the merciful

We in addition to honoring the brave people of the oppressed and under religious despotism country, His Excellency Mr. Mir Hosein Mousavi and the zealous clergy Mr. Mehdi Karoubi also praising the right protests of the people against inattention to the sacred votes of the nation that has shouted the slogan of justice, announce our multilateral support on the divine and national insurrection of the mass of the oppressed people of Iran moreover we point out that the world concern on the gravity of the Human Rights situation in Iran is an usual matter and based on the aware conscience and no body can call it interfering in Iran affairs because Iran government is interfering in the affairs of Palestine, Lebanon, Iraq and Afghanistan in an unjustified way by abusing this subject(concern on Human Rights ) with all its equipments.

Today, noble nations have been annoyed for the lack of equality and freedom and the oppression and injustice applied on Iranian nation by the government and are planning to reflect the voice and the groan of millions of the injured people who are tired of this condition.

The followers and devotees of the liberal clergy, Ayatollah Seyed Hosein Kazemeini Boroujerdi who supports the separation of the religion from government

GetReligion dot Org: Where are the religious voices?

TMatt channeling Jeff Weiss from the Dallas Morning News,
Watching the TV and Internet as events spin wildly in Iran, I went searching for what I was sure would be religious institutional voices weighing in. I’ve mostly come up dry. Usually such hugely public events mean that my e-box fills with official statements from the broad spectrum of institutional religion. So far I’ve seen nothing. So I went searching. I’ve done Internet news searches for “Iran” and a bunch of other religious terms: “Bishop” and “Catholic” and “Baptist” and “pastor” and “rabbi.”

Aside from the leaders of a few U.S. congregations that include Iranian immigrants, I’m finding nothing. …

There’s nothing on the website of the Southern Baptist Convention. Understandable, perhaps, because the SBC’s annual convention is set to begin in Louisville this week and pretty much anybody important is in transit.

The U.S. Council of Catholic Bishops is similarly silent. That body’s semi-annual meeting just ended a few days ago, so maybe they too are in transit.

United Methodist Church, Union for Reform Judaism, Committee on American-Islamic Relations, Unitarian Universalists. These are all folks who usually jump pretty fast to take stands. All silent thus far.
Horrible to say but I have a feeling the Iranian Peoples Green Revolution is upstaging Obama's Health Care Reform roll out. How else to explain posts like this?

Stoning of Soraya M

The Stoning of Soraya M opens this week. Below is an interview on Today with the Star.

We support the people of Iran

Mike Pence on Congress's bipartisan resolution in support of the People of Iran.

It has been said on numerous occasions and by various politicians and pundits that it was an extraordinary week in the life of the nation of Iran. On June 12, from the very moment that the Iranian presidential election results were announced, the international community and the international press questioned the results. The primary reason for our disbelief in the declared result is that millions of paper ballots were collected and counted in mere hours. This occurred even before the extraordinary demonstrations in the street began.

The disbelief on the part of the international community was shared by many Iranian citizens. And while the defeated candidate launched a legal appeal, what ensued on the streets of Tehran, at least according to the BBC, were the largest public demonstrations in the Islamic republic’s 30-year history. It seems that many Iranians have gotten a whiff of freedom and are willing to lay down their lives in the streets of Iran to secure that freedom.

Sadly, as the people have rallied the Iranian government has responded with more violence and oppression, causing numerous fatalities and the arrest of dissidents. We have learned of reporters prevented from making their reports public and the jamming of electronic communications. We may well be witnessing a Tiananmen in Tehran.

I respect that President Obama recognizes the troubling nature of the on-going situation in Iran, but respectfully disagree with where he has drawn the line. I do not believe a strong affirmation of our ideals and engagement with those who oppose our ideals are mutually exclusive. I think it is possible, as President Reagan demonstrated and indeed as it has been demonstrated throughout our history, for the American people to stand up and speak words of encouragement to those who are oppressed while engaging their oppressors.

It seems to me in this moment the American people long to be heard. House Resolution 560, which on Friday passed the House of Representatives with overwhelming bipartisan support, provides the American people an opportunity to do just that.

The resolution, which was introduced in the Senate by Senators McCain and Lieberman, simply states that the House of Representatives condemns the ongoing violence against demonstrators by the government of Iran and pro-government militias, as well as the ongoing government suppression of independent electronic communication through interference with the Internet and cell phones. It affirms the universality of individual rights and the importance of democracy and free elections.

Lastly and most importantly, the resolution expresses our unqualified support for all Iranian citizens who embrace the values of freedom, human rights, civil liberties and the rule of law. I have said many times this week that the cause of America is freedom and in that cause the American people will not be silent. There is no intention here to pick sides in the Iranian election, but to simply stand by those who stand up for freedom.

The intent of this resolution is to demonstrate, in a true spirit of bipartisanship, that the American people continue to be on the side of liberty and freedom.

I am glad that the United States Senate has also passed this important resolution, allowing the American people to speak with one voice in support of human rights and democracy. We have learned throughout our history that when the voice of the American people is heard in defense of democracy and human rights, it can make a difference in the advancement of liberty around the world. I believe in my heart of hearts that this important bipartisan resolution will help do so once more.
ترجمه را با گوگل ترجمه

Pence مایک در قطعنامه دوحزبی کنگره در حمایت از مردم ایران است.
از آن است را در موارد متعدد و سیاستمداران مختلف و pundits که در آن یک هفته فوق العاده ای در زندگی ملت ایران بود گفت : شده است. در تاریخ 12 ژوئن ، از لحظه بسیار است که نتایج انتخابات ریاست جمهوری ایران ، اعلام شد که جامعه بین المللی و فشار های بین المللی مورد سوال قرار نتایج. به دلیل بی اعتقادی به اصل مطلب را برای ما در نتیجه اعلام شده این است که میلیون ها رای کاغذ و جمع آوری شده بود در ساعت شمارش محض. این اتفاق افتاده و حتی قبل از تظاهرات فوق العاده ای را در خیابان آغاز شد.

این ناباوری در بخشی از جامعه بین المللی شده توسط بسیاری از شهروندان ایرانی به اشتراک گذاشته شده است. و در حالی که نامزد شکست آغاز یک تجدید نظر قانونی ، چه ensued در خیابانهای تهران ، تهران ، حداقل با توجه به بی بی سی ، از بزرگترین تظاهرات عمومی را در جمهوری اسلامی به تاریخ سال 30. به نظر میرسد که بسیاری از ایرانیان را مشروع بدست امده به دروغ گفتن از آزادی و مایل به ذخیره کردن کردن زندگی خود را در خیابان های ایران است که برای تضمین آزادی است.

متاسفانه ، به عنوان افراد که rallied که دولت ایران با خشونت و ظلم و ستم در ادامه در پاسخ باعث تلفات متعدد و دستگیری دگراندیشان. در حال حاضر از خبرنگاران آموخته جلوگیری از ساخت عمومی خود را به گزارش و jamming ارتباطات الکترونیکی. ما هم ممکن است شاهد یک Tiananmen در تهران.

من احترام است که رئیس جمهور اوباما به رسمیت می شناسد که موجب تصدیع خاطر ماهیت این بار ، رفتن اوضاع در ایران ، اما با احترام با او کرده است که در آن خط کشیده شده موافق نیستید. من معتقدم نه یک تاکید قوی از آرمانها و تعامل ما با کسانی که مخالف آرمانهای ما را به دو به دو ناسازگار. من فکر می کنم این امکان وجود دارد ، به عنوان رئیس جمهور ریگان نشان داد و در واقع به عنوان آن را در طول تاریخ به ما نشان داده شده است ، برای مردم آمریکا را به ایستادن و صحبت می کنند ، کلمات تشویق برای کسانی که مظلوم هستند در حالی که تعامل با ستمگران است.

آن را به من در این لحظه به نظر می رسد که مردم آمریکا را به مدت شنیده می شود. خانه قطعنامه 560 ، که در روز جمعه در مجلس نمایندگان با حمایت قریب به اتفاق هر دو حزب از تصویب ، فراهم مردم آمریکا یک فرصت است که برای انجام درست.

این قطعنامه ، که در مجلس سنا شده توسط سناتور مک کین و رژیم صهیونیستی ، به سادگی به کشورهای که در مجلس نمایندگان را محکوم به خشونت های مداوم در برابر تظاهر کنندگان از سوی دولت ایران و شبه نظامیان طرفدار دولت ، و همچنین سرکوب مداوم دولت از ارتباط مستقل الکترونیکی معرفی شد را از طریق تداخل با اینترنت و تلفن های همراه. affirms به عمومیت آن را از حقوق فردی و اهمیت دموکراسی و انتخابات آزاد.

و بالاخره مهمتر از همه ، این قطعنامه را بیان حمایت بی حد و حصر ما را برای همه شهروندان ایرانی است که در آغوش ارزشهای آزادی ، حقوق بشر ، آزادیهای مدنی و حکومت قانون است. من گفت : چند بار در این هفته است که باعث از امریکا است که از آزادی و در آن علت مردم آمریکا خواهد بود نه ساکت. است که قصد ندارد در اینجا به انتخاب طرف در انتخابات ایران وجود دارد ، اما به سادگی توسط کسانی که ایستادن برای آزادی ایستاده.

مفاد این قطعنامه این است که نشان دهد ، در یک روح واقعی bipartisanship ، که مردم آمریکا در ادامه به سمت آزادی و آزادی باشد.

خوشحالم که در ایالات متحده در مجلس سنا نیز به تصویب این قطعنامه مهم است ، اجازه می دهد که مردم آمریکا را با یک صدا در حمایت از حقوق بشر و دموکراسی صحبت می کنند. در حال حاضر در طول تاریخ ما را یاد گرفته است که زمانی که صدای مردم آمریکا در دفاع از دموکراسی و حقوق بشر را شنیده است ، می توانید آن را به تفاوت در پیشرفت آزادی در سراسر جهان را. من در قلب من از قلب معتقدند که این قطعنامه مهم دوحزبی کمک خواهد کرد که انجام این کار یک بار دیگر.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Andrew Sullivan channeling Micahel Totten: Americans Open Their Eyes

Totten via the Dish,
For some Americans, Iran can seem a place only of menace and darkness. If you are worried by the conduct of the Iranian regime, you have understood the country better than many commentators. What Americans now see is that Iranians are a people with spirit who are not easily broken. For all the claims that Americans are an unsophisticated bunch, they know that a regime and its people are not one and the same. What has happened in recent weeks has confirmed that instinct.

Are those protesting true believers in democracy? We do not know, because they have never been given the chance. What we do know is that they reject the dishonesty of a repressive theocracy. For that reason alone, we should stand with them.

برای برخی از آمریکایی ها ، ایران می تواند یک محل تنها چیزی که تهدید کننده و تاریکی به نظر می رسد. اگر شما توسط این رفتار رژیم ایران نگران هستند ، باید درک کرد این کشور بهتر از بسیاری از مفسران. آنچه هم اکنون آمریکایی ها را ببینید این است که ایرانیان افراد با روح که به راحتی نمی شکسته. برای همه ادعاهای آمریکایی ها هستند که در یک دسته ساده لوح ، آنها میدانند که یک حکومت و مردم در آن یک و همان نیست. آنچه در هفته های اخیر اتفاق افتاده است را تایید کرده است که در غریزه.

آیا کسانی که در اعتراض به مؤمنان واقعی آزادی و دموکراسی؟ ما نمیدانیم ، چرا که آنها داده شده است هرگز این شانس. چیزی که ما نمی دانم این است که آنها رد نا درستی یک دین سالاری سرکوبگر. برای همین دلیل است که به تنهایی ، ما باید با آنها ایستاده.

Andrew Sullivan: Making Of A Martyr اطلاعات تکمیلی درباره ندا شهید راه آزادی در تهران

via AS,
A blogger apparently in touch with Neda's family members offers some new details (translated by reader Nima): she was born in 1982, apparently her full name was Neda Agha-Soltan, and she was at the protest with one her professors and several other students. She was, they said, shot by a basiji riding by on a motorcycle. Also, she was apparently buried today at a large cemetery in the south of Tehran. ABC News' Lara Setrakian writes, "Hearing reports Neda was buried in Behesht Zahra cemetery earlier today, memorial service cancelled on orders from authorities."

Peter Beaumont: The urge to split the world into two warring camps is childish

Nuance explained by Peter Beaumont in The Observer.

The universal though is revolution. Revolution when reality strips the old order of its myths.

History doesn't go back and not meddling doesn't retain the status quo. This revolution fails the world is stuck with a crippled old order desperate for scapegoats to justify itself. Stability won't remain or be restored by doing nothing. Not when a Iran can buy nukes from North Korea now.

As Trotsky and Mao ought be whispering to President Obama tonight, you may not be interested in the dialectic, but the dialectic is interested in you.

If Obama learned nothing from the old Reds in Chicago, he should have at least learned that...

اختلاف مختصر در توسط پیتر بومانت آبزرور توضیح داد.

هر چند که انقلاب جهانی شده است. انقلاب ، وقتی که نوارها واقعیت های نظم قدیم را از اسطوره است.

تاریخچه کند نه به عقب و دخالت نمی کند که حفظ وضع موجود نیست. در این انقلاب ، نتواند در جهان است که با یک چلاق های نظم قدیم را ناامید برای scapegoats به خودی خود توجیه گیر. ثبات نشده باقی خواهد ماند و یا می شود با انجام هیچ بازسازی. نمی می توانید هنگامی که یک ایران nukes از کره شمالی هم اکنون بخرم.

به عنوان تروتسکی و مائو باید غیبت کننده می شود رئیس جمهور امشب به اوباما ، ممکن است شما را در جدلی نه علاقه مند می شود ، ولی منطقی در شما علاقه مند است.

اگر اوباما چیزی از ستاره قرمز ساله در شیکاگو آموخته ، او باید حداقل آموخت که...

Crowds routing Police درگیری های روز شنبه تهران

I haven't seen anything quite like this before. Video of Protestors driving the Cops away.

HT Spirit of Man


تهران ، ایران ؛ خرداد 20 ، بسیج در مقر به بالا شعله

Following the Revolution inside of Iran

Regime Change Iran is back!

Welcome back... they have some of the key links to follow what's happening.

HT Gateway Pundit.

Covenant of the Unitarian Universalist Society of Geneva, Illinois میثاق از یکتاپرست جامعه ژنو ، ایلینوی

Finally, Google Translate supports Farsi.

ارزومند بودن از ترویج نیکی و عملی در جهان است ، و از معین با یکدیگر ما را در بهب اخلاقی و مذهبی ، ما خودمان را وابسته به هم ، نه به عنوان موافق در نظر است ، نه به عنوان محقق با داشتن حقیقت جهانشمول را در اعتقاد و یا به کمال در شخصیت ، بلکه به عنوان جوینده پس از حق و نیکی.
Being desirous of promoting practical goodness in the world, and of aiding each other in our moral and religious improvement, we have associated ourselves together—not as agreeing in opinion, not as having attained universal truth in belief or perfection in character, but as seekers after truth and goodness.

Green Armbands at GA?

As a symbol of our Solidarity? If I were going, I would wear one.

The Guardian: Iran protests: an eyewitness account

An email to The Guardian.
We gather up with my students on Saturdays for a private class. We cook and eat together, then talk of philosophy. This time there was no class. We only tried to keep up our morale. We were very determined but scared. That is how I can describe the most people who came out to attend the demonstration today. After the fierce speech at the Friday prayers, we knew that today we would be treated differently. We felt so vulnerable, more than ever, but at the same time were aware of our power, which, no matter how influential it is collectively, would have done little to protect us today. We could only take our bones and flesh to the streets and expose them to batons and bullets. Two different feelings fight inside you without mixing with one another. To live or to just be alive, that's the question.
Read the rest.

Revolutionary Road: Minute by minute with Revolution!

Saeed Valadbaygi Revolutionary Road blog. He updates frequently with many photos.

امروز، سی خرداد، ساعت 7 بعد از ظهر این دختر جوان توسط لباس شخصی ها کشته شد

Basij shoots to death a young woman in Tehran's Saturday June 20th protests

Brutal content. Be Warned.
A young woman who was standing aside with her father watching the protests was shot by a basij More.. member hiding on the rooftop of a civilian house. He had clear shot at the girl and could not miss her. However, he aimed straight her heart. I am a doctor, so I rushed to try to save her. But the impact of the gunshot was so fierce that the bullet had blasted inside the victim's chest, and she died in less than 2 minutes.

The protests were going on about 1 kilometers away in the main street and some of the protesting crowd were running from tear gass used among them, towards Salehi St.
The film is shot by my friend who was standing beside me.
Please let the world know

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Banafsheh Zand-Bonazzi's Photos - Wall Photos

Women with rocks. Goddess forbid Sinkford / Morales / Hallaman hear a Prophetic Voice about young women headed for a fight for what's right. Would they rather remain deaf to the voice so to remain unmeddlesome?

I know little of God, but History for sure will Judge your silence harshly.

Pics via Banafsheh's face book.


Banafsheh translated: "The narrator is talking about , where is this that we in our silence send our voices to the worlds' ears, where is this that the young bleed and people just stand there and pray, where is this that the innocent people are referred to as trash by it's leaders. THIS IS IRAN!"

via GateWay Pundit

Friday, June 19, 2009

AI's Hassiba Hadj Sahraoui: Khamenei's speech gives legitimacy to police brutality

via Amnesty International,
This morning's speech by Iran's Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Khamenei, indicates the authorities' readiness to launch violent crackdowns if people continue to protest which may cause a widespread loss of life, Amnesty International said today.

Hassiba Hadj Sahraoui, Deputy Director of the Middle East and North Africa Programme, said:

'We are extremely disturbed at statements made by Ayatollah Khamenei which seem to give the green light to security forces to violently handle protesters exercising their right to demonstrate and express their views.

'If large numbers of people take to the street in protests in the next couple of days, we fear that they will face arbitrary arrest and excessive use of force, as has happened in recent days, particularly as permission for a demonstration to be held in Tehran on Saturday 20 June has been denied.'

'For a Head of State to put the onus of security on peaceful demonstrators and not on the security forces is a gross dereliction of duty and a licence for abuse.'

In a televised address to the nation during Friday prayers in Tehran, Ayatollah Khamenei called for an end to street protests against the outcome of the election. Instead of warning security forces, including the volunteer Basij militia, to act with restraint and in accordance with the law, he said that if people continued to take to the streets, the consequences would lie with them.

Peaceful assembly is expressly permitted under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights to which Iran is a state party. Law enforcement officials must use force only when strictly necessary and to the extent required for the performance of their duty. They must not use firearms unless strictly unavoidable and in order to protect life. Law enforcement personnel must exercise restraint, minimise damage or injury and respect and preserve human life.

Pence Introduces Bipartisan Resolution in Support of Iranian Dissidents

“The joint resolution I and Chairman Berman introduced will give voice to countless Americans who stand with the Iranian dissidents as they stand up for freedom.”

Washington, DC - U.S. Congressman Mike Pence, Chairman of the House Republican Conference, issued the following statement after he and House Foreign Affairs Chairman Howard Berman (D-CA) joined together to introduce a resolution in support of the Iranian dissidents:

“This is an important moment for the Congress, our country and the people of Iran,” said Pence. “For days hundreds of thousands of dissidents have taken to the streets of Iran in support of freedom and democracy. The American cause is freedom and in that cause the American people will not be silent. I am honored to join Chairman Berman in offering this important resolution. The joint resolution I and Chairman Berman introduced will give voice to countless Americans who stand with the Iranian dissidents as they stand up for freedom. I urge Members on both side of the aisle to support this important resolution and I hope for its immediate consideration.”

وقال "القرار الأول المشترك وعرض رئيس بيرمان يعطي صوت لعدد لا يحصى من الأميركيين الذين يقفون مع المنشقين الإيرانيين كما ندافع عن الحرية".

واشنطن العاصمة -- عضو الكونجرس الامريكى مايك بنس رئيس المؤتمر الجمهوري في مجلس النواب ، واصدر البيان الآتي بعد والشؤون الخارجية في مجلس النواب هوارد بيرمان رئيس (مد كاليفورنيا) وانضمت الى جانب طرح مشروع قرار لدعم المنشقين الإيرانية :

"هذه لحظة هامة للمؤتمر ، في بلدنا وشعب ايران" ، وقال بنس. "منذ ايام لمئات الآلاف من المعارضين الى الشوارع في ايران في دعم الحرية والديمقراطية. الاميركي هو السبب في ذلك الحرية وقضية الشعب الاميركي لن يكون صامتا. يشرفني ان ينضم رئيس بيرمان في تقديم هذا القرار الهام. المشترك القرار الأول ورئيس برمان عرض ستعطي صوتا لعدد لا يحصى من الأميركيين الذين يقفون مع المنشقين الإيرانيين حيث نقف من أجل الحرية. وأحث الدول الأعضاء على حد سواء على الجانب الآخر من الممر لدعم هذا القرار الهام وامل كي تنظر فيها على الفور. "
"La résolution commune I et Président Berman introduit donnera voix à de nombreux Américains qui ont avec les dissidents iraniens qui se battent pour la liberté."

Washington, DC - Le Congrès américain Mike Pence, président républicain de la Chambre de conférence, a publié la déclaration suivante après avoir et de la Chambre des affaires étrangères Président Howard Berman (D-CA) se sont associés pour présenter une résolution à l'appui de la dissidents iraniens:

"C'est un moment important pour le Congrès, notre pays et du peuple d'Iran", a déclaré Pence. "Pour les jours des centaines de milliers de dissidents ont pris les rues de l'Iran en faveur de la liberté et la démocratie. La cause américaine est la liberté dans cette cause et le peuple américain ne sera pas le silence. Je suis très honoré de se joindre à l'offre Berman Président de cette importante résolution. La résolution commune I et Président Berman introduit donnera voix à de nombreux Américains qui ont avec les dissidents iraniens qui se battent pour la liberté. J'exhorte les députés des deux côtés de l'allée à l'appui de cette résolution importante et je l'espère, pour son examen immédiat. "


Winston's tragic prediction,
Khamenei just finished his freaking sermon with saying that he's willing to give his life to defend the regime and Islam. I think this game just got a whole lot uglier. Now the fight is on. The innocent defenseless Iranian people Vs a regime that is armed to the teeth. I have a horrible feeling about this thing. I think he's ordered the regime's security forces to unleash its power against the protesters. Massacre awaits the Iranian people...

I think someone is calling us *دیدگاه های مطرح شده در کاریکاتور، نظر شخصی طراح است و لزوما بازتاب نظرات خبرنامه گویا و گردانندگان آن نیست.

via Goya News HT Winston

No blogging for a while

I'll be away from a computer for a while. I can't stay far from this moment though and my heart and mind not far from you.

سأكون بعيدا عن جهاز الكمبيوتر لبعض الوقت. لا استطيع البقاء بعيدا عن هذه اللحظة وعلى الرغم من قلبي وليس بعيدا عن الأذهان لك.

Je vais être loin d'un ordinateur pendant un certain temps. Je ne peux pas rester loin de ce moment, et si mon coeur et l'esprit, non loin de vous

Hamas and Hezbollah in Iran تصویر شماری از مزدوران خارجی (حماس و حزب الله)

Iran Press News believes they have captured photos of Hamas and Hezbollah thugs in Iran:

تصویر شماری از مزدوران خارجی (حماس و حزب الله)

Maryam Namazie: You know us; support us!

From her blog,
People of the world!

We are your neighbours, friends, lovers, colleagues, and comrades.

You know us.

We have lived together and fought together – whether for labour rights, against Sharia, for civil rights, asylum rights, against executions and stonings, against cultural relativism, against faith schools and apostasy laws, for freedom of expression, rationalism and secularism, against political Islam and US militarism…

Today, our revolution – the one we have been preparing and waiting for - has begun in Iran.

We need you to support it full force.

The battle you see unfolding on the streets of Iran is not about the farce of an election, though that is what the western media wants you to think. Everyone knows that elections in Iran are anything but. In fact, people are taking advantage of the intensified infighting between the regime’s factions to raise their own demands and they – like the rest of us - want the Islamic regime to go.

And it has to go.

Thirty years of medievalism and brutality is enough.

If nothing else, one thing is clear.

The mass movement that is going to bring this regime in Iran to its knees and break the back of the political Islamic movement internationally has begun.

Your support and solidarity will strengthen this revolutionary movement. Come out and condemn the regime and its brutality; exert pressure on western governments to politically isolate the regime. Join us in front of the Islamic regime’s embassies across the globe to call for them to be shut down. Call for the prosecution of all those involved in the killings, for the immediate release of all detainees and political prisoners, unconditional freedoms, including for organisation, strike and protest, an end to compulsory veiling, a living wage and an end to sexual apartheid. Send your messages to the protesting people of Iran to be read on our 24 hour New Channel TV station. Support us and our party, the Worker-communist Party of Iran.

Mark our words; like racial apartheid in the former South Africa, a regime of sexual apartheid can and will be relegated to the dustbins of history.

The future is ours.

Maryam Namazie
Mina Ahadi
Fariborz Pooya
Bahram Soroush
Mahin Alipour
Afsaneh Vahdat
Abe Asadi
Farshad Husseini
Farideh Arman
Karim Shahmohammadi
Fereshteh Moradi

Them Jews: Khamenei blames media belonging to Zionists, evil media

The New York Times on the leaders speech.
He blamed “media belonging to Zionists, evil media” for seeking to show divisions between those who supported the Iranian state and those who did not, while, in fact, the election had shown Iranians to be united in their commitment to the Islamic revolutionary state.
Meddlesome Jews...

update Andrew Sullivan has live tweets of the speech.

UUA: Get Ready to Vote for the Statement of Conscience for Peacemaking

So what do the drafts tell UUs to say on Iran, Afghanistan, and those missiles that may have been fired towards Hawaii by the time this discussed? Will the draft allow UU's to agree yet take widely divergent positions on violent events unfolding faster than UU's draft amendments.

If the song asks which side are you on? which side are you on? will we draft our conscience to state you can be on both?

My comment to this.

UUSC Calls for Humanitarian, Not Military, Surge in Afghanistan

I have my doubts about the Administrations prodding of Pakistan and the Pak's heavy hand in the NWFP. But as far as the call for Humanitarian efforts go (And I've volunteered to go: I'm on the list with the Corps of Eng and State), but how many UU's would tell their kids to volunteer? Especially if there wasn't NATO security? Gosh,how many UUs would tell there kids they might even have a duty to volunteer? Here's UUSC's link,
UUSC believes the Obama administration's decision to send additional troops to Afghanistan and continue incursions into Pakistan is creating a perilous regional conflict. This is an unwinnable war that threatens innocent lives and undermines respect for human rights and civil liberties. The dramatic gains made by the Taliban in Pakistan, and Pakistan's intensified, U.S.-supported efforts to eliminate them, have resulted in a new humanitarian emergency in the North West Frontier Province, which has displaced an estimated 1.5 million people.

WSJ: We're All NeoCons Now

Each day President Obama's blasé business-as-usual attitude toward Iran seems more out of touch with reality. Today's New York Times reports that the president "is coming under increased pressure from Republicans and other conservatives who say he should take a more visible stance in support of the protesters." But if you read on, it turns out "Republicans and other conservatives" are far from the only ones bothered by Obama's what-me-worry policy:
Even while supporting the president's approach, senior members of the administration, including Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, would like to strike a stronger tone in support of the protesters, administration officials said.
It sounds as though Biden and Mrs. Clinton are "supporting the president's approach" in only the most pro forma way. It is extraordinary that the two most senior administration officials apart from the president himself are airing their objection to his policies in this way.
Read the whole thing here.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

We ask Google to change Google logo for one day.

Support the idea here. HT to The Guardian's live blog.

Iranian Hero & Human Rights Activist Kianoosh Sanjari: "The People of Iran Will Not Forgive Obama For Siding With the Regime" (Audio-Video)

Gateway Pundit interviews Kianoosh Sanjari here.
In this video Kianoosh Sanjari reveals:

** Ayatollah Khomenei's grand-daughter was arrested during a recent demonstration.

** Former President Rafsanjari's daugher marched in the protest tonight in Tehran.

** On the night of the election after his vote Rafsanjari called on the people to demonstrate.

** There is a great split between the two factions of hardliners and moderates. It is reminescent of the 1979 revolution.

** The people of Iran will not forgive Barack Obama for siding with the evil regime.

** Even the soccer players protested today during their match with South Korea. The coach protected his players by telling the Iranian press that the team was wearing green armbands because of religious reasons- that the players were actually showing their faith. But, this was the first time the team has ever worn green wristbands, ever.

** The protesters are communicating anyway they can. The regime has been trying to shut down communications. At the rally each day the protesters carry signs that announce the next rally. This is how they are communicating.

** Thousands of doctors and nurses in their uniforms were protesting in the street yesterday.

** The regime has a list of reporters and websites and have threatening the reporters on their list.

** There is a cyber-war going on in Iran today between the moderates and the hardliners. Each group is trying to take down the other groups websites.

** Ayatollah Khameini had no idea the protests and reaction by the people would be so great.

** The Opposition wants to drag the protests out until Friday. Khameini will likely congratulate Ahmadinejad. Then it will be up to the West to decide if they will allow these savages to continue their rule.

** Kianoosh has contacts in Iran who are feeding him information daily.

** Everywhere you go everyone is talking. They are talking in the streets. They are talking on busses. They are talking on trains. They are telling nasty jokes about the regime. One joke is about Mahmoud not being able to bathe for a week.
Never before have Iranians been so openly disrespectful of the brutal regime.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Roger Simon: Obama, Iran and the ongoing saga of the liberal reactionary

Simon writes a great column today,
....it will be no surprise to readers that I am similarly disturbed at his [Obama's] reaction to the current situation in Iran. He has done little in public beyond expressing “deep concern” on two occasions while making the point that any strong American comment on the Iranian election would only play into the hands of the mullahs, allowing them to blame the crisis on the Great Satan.

On the surface, Obama appears to have a point. But the curious thing is that not a single Iranian I know - and I know a fair number because of several years of involvement with their freedom movement - agrees. No one is advocating we call out the Marines, but almost every Iranian I have talked with would like to see a more fervent declaration of democratic principles, more support for the bravery of the demonstrators, by our president. Such declarations have already been made by Angela Merkel and Nicolas Sarkozy with no discernible backlash. My guess is that the Iranian demonstrators, those quite literally laying their lives on the line, would love to know that the leader of the free world is on their side.

But he waffles. Why?
Read on... it's American politics trumping international politics. Not wanting to look the neo-con or Democracy builder. Yet a few words from a guy so many are inspired by and look too could mean the difference between a revolution and the hope of a better Iran, and the status quo with the lust for nukes. A status quo that can only end very badly for the Iranian people most of all.

Mohammad Asgari: Interior Ministry official who leaked election results is killed

At 11am at The Guardians live coverage,
The man who leaked the real election results from the Interior Ministry - the ones showing Ahmadinejad coming third - was killed in a suspicious car accident, according to unconfirmed reports, writes Saeed Kamali Dehghan in Tehran.

Mohammad Asgari, who was responsible for the security of the IT network in Iran's interior ministry, was killed yesterday in Tehran.

Asgari had reportedly leaked results that showed the elections were rigged by government use of new software to alter the votes from the provinces.

Asgari was said to have leaked information that showed Mousavi had won almost 19 million votes, and should therefore be president.
We will try to get more details later.

خوانندگان خوش از ایران است. لطفا به من اطلاع اگر می دانید که بیشتر در مورد این داستان را بگذارید.


Update: Mr. Asgari's ID card here.

اطلاعات بیشتر در مورد آقای عسگری. از شما به خاطر آمدن به وبلاگ من. از شما به عنوان مثال با شکوه خود را از مبارزه برای بشر ، حقوق بشر است.

Iranian Protesters Embrace Police

Much more at Spirit of Man,

Iran: What you can do

A cross post from Spirit of Man, and also Winston's latest update from Teheran.

What you can do

I have been asked by so many people today again about how they can help the people of Iran in their quest for democracy and freedom. I have had calls from as far as Holland. This is what I think any decent human being can do to help further the cause of liberty in Iran:

In the United States: Get on the phones. Call your US Congressmen/women and demand they issue statements in support of the Iranian people. Remind them of Iran Freedom Support Act of 2005. Make sure to be polite and courteous. Call your senators and demand they be tough with the regime.

In Canada, UK, Holland & other European countries: Call your respective Members of Parliament. Demand they press their respective governments not to negotiate with the Iranian regime. Be polite and ask them kindly to issue statements in support of the people of Iran's quest for democracy and liberty. You can call or write to your media and ask them to cover the Iranian regime's brutal crackdown of the peaceful protests in any way they can. This is a media war. This is the information war. All of you regardless of your location can spread the word. The regime fears nothing like information. That's all I can think of now but if you've comments or suggestions, please share them with me.

You can find local pro-freedom rallies arranged by Iranian expats in your town/city and show up as a sign of support. Trust me, it is very heart warming for Iranians to see you care. All of us need to be encouraged and I am sure your presence provides that for those who are fighting the regime. Thank you!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

UUA Statement on Iran?

PeaceBang asks.

Before you knock Mike Pence below maybe we should contemplate our own response instead.

Ayatollah Mohammad Kazemeini Boroujerdi's words upon his arrest in 2006,
Tell the world that Boroujerdi did not fear death…. He defended an Islam which promotes love and kindness not the Islam that these lot advocate which has brought poverty, corruption, prostitution, addiction ….I don’t want you to risk your lives for me, I just want you to tell the world what happened here.
The Ayatollah still imprisoned or maybe dead now. No word from his supporters and I got mail regularly. We're comfortable. We have nothing to fear. We should speak our support because the alternatives to reform in Iran will I believe be a fearsome thing for Iran and the world. We shouldn't sit this out.

Pence Introduces Resolution Supporting Dissidents in Iran

“I come to this floor at an extraordinary moment on the global stage.

“According to the Islamic Republic News Agency, the official news agency of Iran, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad supposedly won the election over his primary opponent on 12 June, 2009. But from the very moment that that election result was announced, the international community and the international press called it into question. The basis for that, even before the extraordinary demonstrations had begun to take place, was the fact that these were paper ballots. But the official government results of the election were announced literally within hours of the polls being closed. Various media outlets around the world questioned the authenticity of the results.

“Mr. Mousavi, the defeated candidate, has launched a legal appeal against the election results. On the day of the election, mobile phone communications were interrupted. Western media has reported, ‘heavy electronic jamming, disturbing broadcasts.’ News websites were reportedly blocked by Iranian authorities and the Iranian government has allegedly arrested opposition political figures and journalists. The Iranian government has outlawed any protest following two days of extraordinary unrest. The BBC recently reported that recent rallies in the streets of Tehran were the biggest demonstrations in the Islamic Republic's 30-year history.

“The protest, according to news reports, became violent and, according to media reports, pro-government forces attacked demonstrators in the last 24 hours, causing at least one fatality. We are witnessing a Tiananmen in Tehran, and the United States of America must stand in the gap on behalf of those brave Iranian citizens who are standing for free and fair elections, democracy and basic rights.

“Freedom in fact may be flowering in Iran as hundreds of thousands rally for democracy and free elections. While I appreciate President Obama's comments yesterday at the White House that he was, ‘troubled by the violence,’ and his belief that the voices of the Iranian people should, be ‘heard and respected,’ it seems by my lights that this administration has yet to express the unqualified support of the American people for those who are courageously taking to the streets for free elections and for democracy in Iran.

“Let me say from my heart, the American cause is freedom and in this cause the American people will not be silent, here or abroad. If the President of the United States won't express the unqualified support of our nation for the dissidents in the streets of Tehran, this Congress must.

“Today I'm introducing a resolution that will do just that. It will express its concern regarding the reported irregularities of the presidential election of 12 June, 2009. It will condemn the violence against demonstrators by pro-government militia in Tehran in the wake of the elections. It will affirm our belief in the universality of individual rights and the importance of democratic and fair elections. And lastly, and most importantly, it will express the support of the American people for all Iranian citizens who struggle for freedom, civil liberties and the protection of the rule of law.

“Believe it or not in my small town of Columbus, IN, I grew up next door to a Hungarian immigrant who fled Hungary in the wake of the Soviet repression of the Hungarian revolution in 1956. I sat often with Julius Perr, now passed away, and heard of the way the Hungarian people, inspired by our calls for freedom, stood up for their own freedom. And as Brett Stephens recounts in today's Wall Street Journal we stood by idly. We didn't want to interfere. And the Soviet tanks rolled.

“We cannot stand idly by, speak of Iran's sovereignty, speak of her own right to choose her own leadership at a time when hundreds of thousands of Iranians are risking their lives to stand up for free elections and democracy.

“Ronald Reagan said, ‘No arsenal, or no weapon in the arsenals of the world, is so formidable as the will and moral courage of free men and women.’ All of us desire a fresh start with Iran and it seems from news reports and the extraordinary images coming from the streets of Iran that millions of Iranians long for a new start in their government. There is a reformist movement afoot in Iran.

“Today I’ll introduce a resolution. I urge all my colleagues in both parties to join me in expressing their support for these brave and courageous men and women.”

Zahra Rahnavard: wife who urges protesters on

What's happeing in Iran. It's all about Women and a Woman. The Guardian via Michael Ledeen who wrote,
Does Mousavi even want to change the system? I think he does, and in any event, I think that’s the wrong question. He is not a revolutionary leader, he is a leader who has been made into a revolutionary by a movement that grew up around him. The real revolutionary is his wife, Zahra Rahnavard. And the real question, the key question in all of this, is: why did Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei permit her to become such a charismatic figure? How could he have made such a colossal blunder? It should have been obvious that the very existence of such a woman threatened the dark heart of the Islamic Republic, based as it is on the disgusting misogyny of its founder, the Ayatollah Khomeini.

The Seven-Point Manifesto of the Iranian Resistance

Via PJ Media,
1.Stripping Ayatollah Khamanei of his Supreme Leadership position because of his unfairness. Fairness is a requirement of a Supreme Leader.

2. Stripping Ahmadinejad of the presidency, due to his unlawful act of maintaining the position illegally.

3.Transferring temporary Supreme Leadership position to Ayatollah Hussein-Ali Montazery until the formation of a committee to reevaluate and adjust Iran’s constitution.

4. Recognizing Mir Hossein Mousavi as the rightfully elected president of the people.

5. Formation of a new government by President Mousavi and preparation for the implementation of new constitutional amendments.

6. Unconditional release of all political prisoners regardless of ideaology or party platform.

7. Dissolution of all organizations - both secret and public - designed for the oppression of the Iranian people, such as the Gasht Ershad (Iranian morality police).

Monday, June 15, 2009

The Basiji Attacks!

via Gateway Pundit. I couldn't get the audio to work.

'Death to Dictator'; 'Change, Change';

I'm in a rush but clipped extensively from Winston's post. The last link has a huge list of powerful pictures.
Just talked via phone with a very close friend of mine in Tehran. He explained to me that the people in the streets are 'extremely angry' with the entire system. Though he pointed to me that if the regime resorts to more violence or kills the people, then the reformist minds will shift into 'regime change' mode sooner or later. I am supposed to get in touch with him within the next 8-9 hours to have more updates for you after he's back from the planned rally today. My friend emphasized on the growing anger of the people in the streets of Tehran. He said people do feel they are cheated.

He says the main chants have been: 'Death to Dictator'; 'Change, Change'; 'We want freedom' and many other anti-theocracy slogans. Photos

Excellent images from Iran

Saeed Valadbaygi: Iran: Riot in tehran streets after election day(4) Third day!

Caution as some of the pics quite bloody,
+++BBC :Saeed Valadbaygi's "Revolutionary Road" blog puts together pictures and videos which have been posted on blogs, YouTube and Facebook

+++Le Monde, first daily newspapers in France, selectionned the two best blogs of reference for pictures on the riots in Iran. One of them is comrade Saeed Valadbaygi's Revolutionnary road!

Courage 24خرداد 88، خیابان ولیعصر، اعتراض به نتیجه انتخابات

via Azarmehr: The Fear is Gone

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Iranian Woman: Not What It Was Supposed to Be

Sheema writes Not What It Was Supposed to Be, and yesterday's From Theocracy To Junta
Yesterday even before the news of Ahmadinejad's win was released I declared in my blog that something funny was going on. Today it is even more evident that something really really funny is going on. Rafsanjani's house is apparently surrounded by security forces. Let's face it Rafsanjani has the most to lose here. His and his sons head is on the line. If there is any chance that this trend is going to be reversed, Rafsanjani will be the key player. Today is the day that the Islamic Republic officially transformed from a theocracy supported by Pasdaran to a Junta supported by a handful of clerics. Whether or not the mullahs who were apparently outraged by Ahmadinejad's statements during televised debates sit on the sideline and watch remains to be seen. The people should not become pawns in this power game.

Police vs People

via Winston's Spirit of Man,
This is a video by the Italian TV reporter showing police attacking people. Then the people charge at the police motorcycles and capture a few officers. First people attacking police in Iran is unheard of. Then at the end of the video you'll see how people shield the same officer from further beating by angry people. This is excellent. Goes to show the people are FED UP. It proves that the regime might not look invincible in the eyes of Iranians any more. If this is the case, the regime is shaky, then its fall might come sooner than later. Let's give our support to those in the streets of Tehran and other cities who are fighting against regime brutality... 'Death to Dictator'

Winston writes,
URGENT UPDATE: Security forces have raided the main campus of Tehran university in NW of Tehran. Shots being fired and heard across the area. 15 students injured. One killed (unconfirmed)

Andrew Sullivan: The Revolution Will Be Twittered

via Sullivan's Dish,
Mock not. As the regime shut down other forms of communication, Twitter survived. With some remarkable results. Those rooftop chants that were becoming deafening in Tehran? A few hours ago, this concept of resistance was spread by a twitter message. Here's the Twitter from a Moussavi supporter:
ALL internet & mobile networks are cut. We ask everyone in Tehran to go onto their rooftops and shout ALAHO AKBAR in protest #IranElection

Possibly first “anti-militarist and anti-imperialist action during Obama’s presidency”

Note Dan Curry's link to my post on fellow Chicagoan Carl Davidson's Barak O'Bomb'em post in RBO's latest on the anti war action in Washington State.

Carl, who in the world would of thought all of the tired old reds in Chicago would become such national links?

Esfehan after iranian election. Riot police running away

via Michael Totten. Pretty remarkable....

Iran Pics

From faramarz's photostream

Obama, please help us, they are killing our young children.

White House Worries About Stability While Iranians Plead for Help

A Michael Goldfarb post I've clipped in full.

Yesterday Marc Ambinder reported that "White House officials say they worry about the stability of Iran during a protracted post-vote period of uncertainty." The people of Iran might hope for a little more from the administration than concerns about stability. The NIAC blog reports:

According to our private phone conversations with people in Tehran, hundreds of parents have gathered by a police station in Yousef Abad, now known as Seyyed Jamal Aldin Asad Abadi, with their hands raised to the sky saying “Obama, please help us, they are killing our young children.” They were gathering there because their kids are missing and they were trying to find out where they are.

It's hard not to see a parallel here between candidate Obama's slow response to last summer's crisis in Georgia and his administration's reluctance to wade into the Iranian election, presumably for fear of driving the opposition into the arms of the regime. But wasn't Obama's election supposed to restore America's moral authority precisely so that the United States government could use soft power and diplomacy in a situation like this? What is Obama doing to help those who are seeking change in Iran? Or has opposition to regime change morphed into support for stability, even if that means support for Ahmadinejad?

Iran: Why did the clergy panic?

via Michael Totten and Gateway Pundit,

A reader writing to Andrew Sullivan,
Why did the clergy panic? Because they saw something much larger than just Mousavi being elected. They saw the beginnings of a wave that would sweep them out of power. This started with Khatami. and it won't stop today just because they declared a fraudulent winner. Mousavi would have been the crowbar with which to pry open the tangled nest of corruption that came into power soon after the 1979 revolution. There is enough pent-up anger in Iran's youth to fuel a complete wipeout of the regime. If the thugs were so utterly ham-fisted in their attempt to usurp power, they surely will commit scores of idiotic errors in the days to come. I cannot imagine Rafsanjani staying quiet for much longer; the theocracy is about to break wide open. Resistance will take many forms, and now will not stop until the mullahs are permanently out of power. Iran is headed for civil war.

TehranLive dot Org

Great Iranian Picture site.

Obama's Unitarian roots

Procustes reviews them over at The Real Barack Obama
But Obama has a much closer military connection-one he has not talked about publicly. Had a reporter asked Obama: “So what were you doing during Bill Ayers’ fugitive days?” An honest answer would be: “I was going to Sunday school at a church which had provided sanctuary to US military deserters.”
It would have been interesting to see the Prez reference Unitarianism in Cairo as it gets translated into something akin to Wahabism in Arabic.

President Obama give a speech; and Rev Sinkford too!

Stephen F. Hayes writes,
Barack Obama should give another speech. Soon, maybe tomorrow. He should address this one to the people of Iran, whose eagerness for a political voice – a real political voice – is obvious in the photographs and reports from the streets of Tehran in the last 24 hours.


Obama could tap into the enthusiasm and frustration of the protesters with a few well-chosen words about democracy, the rule of law, the will of the people, consent of the governed and legitimacy. He could choose a compelling story or two from inside Iran to make his points most dramatically, perhaps an anecdote about sacrifices some Iranians made to vote or an example of post-election intimidation.

When Barack Obama was elected, his supporters promised that his foreign policy would seek to effect important change in the world without using force, that he would deploy soft power – or, as Hillary Clinton put it during her confirmation, “smart power.”
Maybe an opportunity for our Rev Sinkford to say some words to make amends for the humiliation he brought upon UUs too.

انتخابات ۸۸ اعتراض‌های خیابانی به نتیجه انتخابات در شهرهای ایران

More over at Radio Farda...about all that's left Farsi speakers at the moment.

and the BBC and Revolutionary Road...

حجاب; وحشیگری پلیس ایران ضد زنان , Iranian brutal Police

People support and release Iranian girl under attack of brutal Police in Tehran.

درگیری زن ایرانی با مزدوران رژیم در خیابان و حمایت مردم

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Utopia in the Bronx

You have to have spent a few years in the hard left to feel warm and at home with this.
PS And I did...

A Neo Con Yankee in Karzi's Court

Bhadrakumar in The Asia Times on Obama's resurrection of Zalmay Khalilzad. The third leg to Obama's Af Pak strategy of McChrystal, and Zadari's offensive maybe. What will UU PeaceMakers make of this?
To be sure, there is no one in Washington today who can match Zal's impeccable credentials, having seen it all in Iraq, and knowing like the palm of his hands the ethos and traditions of the Pashtun tribes. Certainly, he will take his stance to the right of McChrystal. When the tough special forces commander hits the Taliban hard, rubbishes them and makes them "reconcilable", and when the "chameleon insurgents" - as Petraeus calls them contemptuously - begin to peel away, he will pass them on to Zal.

Zal will carefully roll up his sleeves, sit down with them over a cup of green tea, and talk some sense into their dazed minds. And then, he will make a mental note as to the fastness of the color of the "chameleons" facing him and looking at him with their watery eyes, before short-listing them for future assignments. That is, until a job falls vacant for Zal himself - in the presidential palace in Kabul.
Footnote: P4 tells RP the mission,
Post: As the commander of the US Central Command, you're the big-picture "strategy guy." Could you give readers a clear statement of our mission in Afghanistan?

Petraeus: The mission is to ensure that Afghanistan does not again become a sanctuary for al Qaeda and other transnational extremists. That's what it had become before the operations conducted in the wake of 9/11. Al Qaeda wants to carry out further attacks on the US and our allies, and we need to deny them safe havens in which they can plan and train for such attacks.
...and the book he's been reading.

Our Daily Bread

A Common Sense Cook Book from the Ladies Aid Society at Chicago's Second Universalist Church from 1883.

Lee Bey: The Urban Observer

A great blog if you like Chicago architecture.
The official blog of urbanist, writer and architecture critic Lee Bey. The blog features observations, photography, video links and all things dealing with Chicago's built environment (or anything else that interests me).
Wit a post on Chicago's Sixth Presbyterian Church.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Clark Olsen's Morales endorsement

(Just for background, I cast my lot with the Morales supporters at Church this week.) Here's an interesting paragraph from Clark Olsen's sensible endorsement. It points to a problem I'm not certain Olsen or Morales have spoken too. Here it is,
For me, Peter embodies the spirit, the wisdom and the practical skills needed for Unitarian Universalists to once again become, as we were in the 19th century, a catalyst with a central role in defining American culture, and, by extension, in our global future. The recent Pew Survey of Religion in American Culture, documenting increasingly widespread acceptance of UU values and theological understandings, illuminates an extraordinary opportunity for UU congregational growth in an increasingly diverse American population. Peter powerfully describes our moral imperative: “Our congregations are surrounded by the spiritually hungry and religiously homeless. Growing our movement is the moral equivalent of feeding the hungry and housing the homeless. Growth is not something that is merely organizationally desirable, growth is a moral and religious imperative.”
If these two assertions are true: 1) that Unitarianism and Universalism were once central catalysts in American culture, and 2) our values had become increasingly and widely accepted and yes we are surrounded by the spiritually hungry and religiously homeless, then did our success in spreading our values create the spiritual hunger and religious homelessness we now witness?

I suspect the Evangelical and Orthodox, the Political Conservative, and others not so deeply into thought but aware of today's culture, would say yes, Liberalism's succeeded with a vengeance in freeing us from authority of family, state, tradition, and all. Now were detached an autonomous, free to pursue our desires. But your victory brought loneliness and homelessness. What are we to make of your success?

Before we embark on Spanish lessons and try to sell UUism to our Hispanic neighbors (a spin I fear Morales supporters may debase his message too; and while I'm writing: learning Hindi or Urdu to outreach our equally numerous Asian neighbors never mentioned... those languages too hard?) I think we need to sort out what we've done, what was the result, and what we indeed to proclaim now.

I don't fully buy into these assertions. I'm not certain the spiritual homelessness or hunger is as acute as Olsen and others suggest, and I'm not certain we were such catalysts as we may think. But there is more than a small grain of truth to them too. Perhaps Clark can develop this one further. I'm interested in hearing more.

Would you encourage your child to become a UU minister?

Would any ministers out there encourage a kid to become one?

Just curious. Tell us why or why not?

Mine's expressed interest.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

St Paul's Universalist's Sunday School Helper

Click on the page and it will spin you to Google Books and the full description of the program. St Paul's Universalist, Chicago was located at Prairie and 30th on the South Side, and then later at 66th and Blackstone.Text not available
The Sunday School Helper

Church of the Redeemer, Second Univesalist Society of Chicago

Chicago's Greater Union Baptist Church now occupies the structure and their website acknowledges the building's past with this History. Post Card thanks to Chicago Post Cards.
The Church of the Redeemer was organized in 1858 as the Second Universalist Society, and was originally located on Union Street in a building formerly occupied by the Presbyterians. Two years later, the congregation built a new church on the corner of Sangamon Street and Washington Boulevard (ca. 1860). The congregation continued to thrive, but many of its parishioners appear to have moved farther westward into the neighborhood beyond Ashland Boulevard, with the result that plans were made for the construction of a new church bulding on a new site. A lot at Warren Blvd. and Robey Street, donated by Mrs. Mary Talcott, was selected as the site for a new structure, and William LeBaron Jenney, who had designed the Home Insurance Building, the first skyscraper, was chosen as the architect. The property was valued at $10,000, and the cost of the building, its furnishings and organ was valued at an additional $50,000. The congregation at that time numbered four hundred members, and there were two hundred children enrolled in the Sunday School. Ground for the new building was broken on June 1, 1885; it was ready for worship on Easter Sunday, April 25, 1886. The building style is perhaps best described as Richardsonian Romanesque, a style strongly influenced by Trinity Church in Boston. Henry Richardson was a seminal late nineteenth century who eschewed the fussiness of the Victorian architectural style then in vogue. Trinity Church, Boston, designed in 1868, was a strong influence on late nineteenth century ecclesiastical architecture, and round-headed windows, clean lines, simple massing and rational interior arrangements are basic elements in its design.

A contemporary description of the Church of the Redeemer is instructive of late Victorian taste: “A broad staircase leads to the auditory which materially differs from the usual pattern, being a large rectangular hall with organ and pulpit on the eastern long side and seats rising as in a amphitheater. The ceiling is of natural pine, supported by a system of rafters which are painted olive brown and copper bronze. The whole adorned with trimmings and carvings. The beautifully decorated front of the organ and the elegantly carved pulpit in the center of the east wall harmonize well with the rest. The decoration of the walls consists in bronze releaf, terra cotta colored fields, a frieze in dull brown and olive green finials.” The same source describes the windows: “the stained glass paints are very beautiful. The one on the north shows the biblical sower, that on the south a copy of the Sistine Madonna (memorial). The finest of them are, however, in the three large windows on the western extremity of the transcripts (Talcott memorial), especially the central one, representing “Charity,” displays find effects in color.” Since 1928, the Church of the Redeemer has been the home of Greater Union Baptist Church. This congregation , organized in September, 1908, has lovingly maintained this handsome and important structure. The building was rededicated in 1951.
It sits kitty corner from the United Center where the Bulls and the Hawks now play.