For two months tens of thousands of courageous protesters have taken to the streets of Iran, defying the savagery of the security forces and risking limbs, lives and liberty to resist a coup d’état by a hardline regime that had almost certainly been voted out of office.
How utterly dispirited they must have felt, then, how demoralised, to see the ambassadors of Britain and other Western nations attending President Ahmadinejad’s swearing-in ceremony yesterday. The converse is also true. How inspiring it would have been if they had had the guts to stay away, or to send their most junior diplomats, like Germany did.… Seguir leyendo »
Iran’s presidential election was not supposed to be like this – days (and nights) of giddy excitement and political mudslinging and anarchic scenes of a sort that the tightly-controlled Islamic republic has not seen since the revolution.
It was meant to be a formality. The Guardian Council, a body of senior conservative clerics, would select a handful of candidates with impeccable Islamic and revolutionary credentials. The country would go through the motions of democracy to impress the outside world and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad would duly be re-elected, as every other incumbent president has in the republic’s 30-year history.
How could the Israel-hating, US-bashing, nuclear weapon-chasing President lose when he was backed by Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran’s Supreme Leader, by the Revolutionary Guard and its volunteer Basij militia, by state-controlled television and a nationwide government machine?… Seguir leyendo »