BBC Persian Service

From YouTube post:

Warning: May be extremely graphic I am submitting video from anonymous sources in Iran. Some video may or may not have been posted before.

Also, from Pitney:

11:43 AM ET — An Iranian-American talks to Iran contacts: “worth noting
people in iran are hearing that others are coming out to join. people are leaving work now and going to join.”

11:37 AM ET — Report: Police taking injured, dead. This story in Persian says that its reporters are trying to confirm deaths but the dead and injured are being grabbed by security forces and taken away.

11:30 AM ET — More Mousavi reporting.

@LilyMazahery: “Mousavi is at head of Jayhoon ave. giving a speech.”

Reliable Iranian on Twitter: “mousavi among people: I am ready for death”

Another: “Mousavi – Confirmed – I have prepared for martyrdom”


This is remarkable footage. On the one hand, I think that if they’ve descended to rock throwing and riot police shooting back, then they’re playing on a field that the government more easily controls. On the other, I think of the irony that the same government is paying good money to incite the cohort demographic in Lebanon and Palestine engage in the same kind of “football hooliganism”.

Update: Lil league championship game delay to prep field, now set for 3pm ET.

Not that this guy sounds like an impressive candidate coming form the mullah’s approved list but why are these guys so ready to leave the field through martyrdom? The mullahs are into that crap. Let them be the martyr. In practical terms, if Mousavi is wasted, the mullahs will wish they had something as organized and orderly as a civil war to contend with.

@FlyingChainSaw: In practical terms, if Mousavi is wasted, the mullahs will wish they had something as organized and orderly as a civil war to contend with.

And that’s the reason behind the statement — its symbolic significance in a martyr-worshiping culture. (He has also declared that he conducted ritual cleansing.) If Khamenei raised the stakes yesterday, Mousavi is going all in.

This gets very, very ugly from here on.

But are they? Are the Persians into that all that Wahabist madness? Mousavi’s base is oriented toward the other end of the spectrum, younger adults and university kids. I interpreted it as a threat – ‘I fucking die, this country is reduced to ash and you will be mullahs of burnt fucking sand and rotting fucking corpses. Fuck with me’ – so to speak.

Courtesy of Andrew Sullivan, video of Basij murdering a woman protesting. WARNING: GRAPHIC.

ADD: Same video as Bloggie’s linque.

@SanFranLefty: We were horrified by the same thing – and the terror in her eyes. I can’t imagine it.

@FlyingChainSaw: In the context of the moment, yes, martyrdom is symbolically significant. Thursday’s protest was couched as a memorial to the martyrs from earlier in the week, and it drew crowds the government even estimated in the hundreds of thousands.

It was also a very deliberate echo of a similar tactic from 1979.

No doubt everyone’s masking their politics and power in piousness — something we’re no stranger to. It’s all code, but it’s very powerful code.

The purpose of revolution is not to die as a martyr for your cause, but to make the *other guy* die as a martyr for his cause.

– paraphrase of George S. Patton

So when are the covert shipments of crates of Croatian AK-47s arriving for the guys we’re supporting?

@redmanlaw: It’s an open market for weapons in the Kurdish province, my neighbor tells me.

But here’s what Khamenei is risking: Not just his opponents becoming armed, but folks outside the country taking advantage of the chaos. Iran don’t necessarily have friends surrounding its borders.

@SanFranLefty: YouTube yanked the video. This isn’t the first time — they said earlier this week they would be more lenient about violence in videos, given the historical moment, but apparently not all the geeks in the trenches are getting the message.

@nojo: I understand why they would do that, though, out of respect to the young woman and her family. But CNN is airing the video on teevee, according the NYT (which won’t link to it or show it), so it’s out there beyond the blogosphere.

@SanFranLefty: CNN is pixellating her face. Also, video on Mousavi’s FB page still works.

The video is up at Huff Post along with new announcement from the White House deploring the violence along with notification of major news conference at 3:10.

@SanFranLefty: There may be two different videos. I’ve seen one on CNN, which is also available on YouTube, but I don’t know whether it’s the same as the one that was pulled.

By the way, CNN is doing this weekend what they should have done last weekend. You still want to check Nico/Sully/NYT/NIAC for more details and context, but at least CNN isn’t flat-out embarrassing.

@Benedick: Haven’t heard about a news conference, but here’s the latest Obama statement:

The Iranian government must understand that the world is watching. We mourn each and every innocent life that is lost. We call on the Iranian government to stop all violent and unjust actions against its own people. The universal rights to assembly and free speech must be respected, and the United States stands with all who seek to exercise those rights.

As I said in Cairo, suppressing ideas never succeeds in making them go away. The Iranian people will ultimately judge the actions of their own government. If the Iranian government seeks the respect of the international community, it must respect the dignity of its own people and govern through consent, not coercion.

Martin Luther King once said – “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.” I believe that. The international community believes that. And right now, we are bearing witness to the Iranian peoples’ belief in that truth, and we will continue to bear witness.

Geek note: While Twitter’s maintenance rescheduling earlier this week is well known, there was also talk of a “Twitapocalypse” last Saturday — the moment Twitter’s odometer rolls over to a number many utilities can’t handle.

The background is that many folks don’t use Twitter directly via the website, but with a number of tools that have been developed to interact with Twitter. The odometer rollover was very similar to Y2K fears: the utilities may not have been designed or upgraded to account for it.

In the event, that hasn’t been an issue. But given the role Twitter started playing the same day as the rollover, we’re lucky everything kept working.

@nojo: If he’s not playing this ironically, and they’re pulling the same strings the mullahs are pulling, they will lose. Or should. Because the result will be the same dystopian horror with mullah’s calling all the shots.

@FlyingChainSaw: Remember, Mousavi himself was chosen by reformists for practical reasons, as the candidate most likely to win if they threw their weight behind him. Nobody was calling for an overthrow of the mullahs — Ahmadinejad drove the economy off a cliff, and they wanted somebody else at the wheel.

Also knowing full well that the Guardian Council could still veto anything the president or parliament proposed — as they did the last time a “reformist” president was in power.

So yes, they may end up with Meet the New Mullahs when this is over. But a week ago, the legitimacy of the regime wasn’t in question. They expected the mullahs to still hold ultimate power, but they thought they still had a voice within the framework of the Iranian constitution.

@FlyingChainSaw: Shorter version: a week ago, it was still going to be an Islamic Republic if Mousavi won. If it now becomes a revolution — which is way too soon to call — it will be because Khamenei overplayed his hand.

There is a problem with internet journalism, however. Some journalists are douchebags. Heartless, idiotic douchebags.

On the comment board at the Youtube clip of that woman’s last moments, this comment appeared.

Wouldn’t have happened if she had stayed in the kitchen.

I had a good cigarette lighter once. Emphasis on had, as it is now ten stories below me, after being flung with great force out of my window a few minutes ago.

God damn it. Some people just suck.

@chicago bureau: Was the comment posted by an Iranian or American fundamentalist?

SanFranLefty: Not that it matters, but the douchebag’s channel had WWE clips on it. So I’m guessing a U.S. American douchebag.

[ADD: the video’s now behind the no-kiddies wall. So the guy actually had to search it out and then type that. Unreal.]

@nojo: It’s still on You Tube, you just have to sign in and attest that you’re over 18.

@chicago bureau: I’m looking for that comment so I can start a JNOV-style flame war with him. (Sorry to the male Stinquers, but I’m assuming a man made that comment).

@chicago bureau: I doubt the [can’t think of anything sufficiently vituperative to match the sin] commenter is a journalist, Internet or not. And we’re seeing plenty of douchebags among the paper-dwelling set.

But the real problem is calling all this “citizen/internet journalism” in the first place — an example of the Internet Triumphalism we were chatting about last night. You can grant that Twitter is playing an historic role here, without promoting that into a context-obscuring meme.

The messages are not self-validating, nor are they self-contextualizing. The classic role of a journalist is to take it all in, make some judgments about which sources to trust, and try to make sense of it for the reader. This doesn’t require a professional journalist, but anybody stepping up to that role bears that responsibility. Journalists are still journalists, whatever medium they choose.

@chicago bureau: Farsi speaking commenters on FB and YT translating what is being yelled said that they think her name is Masatan, because first her father and the other people were yelling things such as “don’t be scared” “put pressure on it” “hurry” “god don’t be scared” “dear god” “motherfucker” “breathe” “don’t leave us” and then her father starts screaming “Masatan” repeatedly, and that is a Persian name.

Jesus H. Christ.

SanFranLefty: Yr culprit is “chaps666”. Go nuts. (Not that it would do any good. But still.)

nojo: The whole internet/blogosphere journalism thing is evolving by the minute, obviously. I mean, you certainly wouldn’t call a guy popping off on the latest UFC clip saying “dude got KTFO!!!1!” a journalist.

This particular incident seems to be “what the world would be like if letters to the editor were published, unfiltered and immediately.” And if the LTEs you see in the paper — selected for space and content, and after a cooling period — are any indication, then the general public is much less intelligent than we had been giving them credit for.

Anyways — this is all pretty venial stuff compared to the real world horror we are seeing.

@chicago bureau: @SanFranLefty: I don’t read comments on youtube or pretty much anywhere but here, because I just don’t have time for the stupidity or the energy to waste being angry. That said, sic’em, Lefty.

@Mistress Cynica: I can’t believe the number of youtube commenters who think it’s faked or staged. WTF?

@JNOV takes a little english to doctor the spin: Jr says this troll needs to be starved. Not gonna feed him. BUT I do engage the people who troll *me*. I couldn’t bring myself to watch the video — don’t know if I can read the comments.

btw, they’re marking the homes now? could this be any more fucking biblical?

@JNOV takes a little english to doctor the spin: Yeah, Jr. is probably right about not feeding him, but what an asshole. Nico Pitney on HuffPo linked to still photos of the video because he said those might be easier for people to see. They weren’t for me – if anything, they were more haunting because the video is total chaos and the still photos slow it down and it really sinks in what you’re seeing.

@RomeGirl: Right? Jr says it started with the nighttime yelling. I wasn’t aware. Make me think of Katrina when they spray painted homes that were inspected for bodies and hazards. God.

@SanFranLefty: I wrote on his wall. We’ll see what happens.

@SanFranLefty: The final photo, her beautiful face covered in blood, her eyes staring at you hauntingly, just undid me. JNOV asked on the other thread what one could do. I don’t know what to do, other than to be a witness to their courage and sacrifice.

@Mistress Cynica: Yeah, I burst into tears at that last photo. So achingly sad and beautiful, I wanted to believe it was a painting and not real. That image could galvanize the opposition even more. It’s a still from a cell phone video, but I’d put it up there with some of the iconic Pulitzer Prize-winning photographs that captured so much in one image.

ADD: Here’s what we’re talking about for anyone who can’t find the link on Nico Pitney’s updates.

Today in Albuquerque, a 19 year old woman got up early , went to her boring fucking job at Denny’s and was shot and killed when a half dozen assholes showed up and shot the place up in a robbery.

Thursday afternoon some homie who has a drift wood carving business hired a wrecker to pull his truck out of a nearby lake where it rolled in when he forgot to set the parking brake. Not only did they find the truck, but also a car with the bodies of an adult male and three younger males who went missing in 2001 during a custodial dispute. Guy probably murdered his kids and killed himself, using the lake to hide the bodies. Our courier at work was the tow truck operator. I’ve been swimming at that spot.

Just random violence here, not a state in political upheaval. No point to be made, just some shit that happened. I don’t know what we can do about any of this. Love your families, live full lives, exercise your freedoms, pray, give to or help those you think can do something. That’s my two cents. Now I’m thinking again about those Navajos who were killed in Window Rock during their revolution 20 years ago.

@nojo: There’s been a sea change today, and Mousavi has taken a radical tack. He’s called out the council, and taken huge political and personal risks to do so; it’s as if Al Gore had actually rebounded from the 2000 fiasco and gone to the mat, dragging the Supreme Court down with him in a death match.

@chicago bureau: Still have that lighter? Because I just paid a visit to the old-old joint:

That Iranian chick is hot … or was hot. The guy rubbing her chest probably isn’t trying to resuscitate her.

Where have all the good Wonkette commenters gone?

Oh, that’s right: They’re here.

nojo: Damn you. Now I gotta go to Dominick’s (like Safeway, but more sausage) and get another one.

And yet Jim and his Banhammer of Truth is nowhere to be found. Partly because it’s a Saturday night, I guess.

(And why am I posting tonight? Assclown chased a flush and rivered me and my set in my weekly poker game. Poker’s like that, tho.)

i am exhausted and traumatized, horrified.
just checking in with news from the middle east i.e. my friends:
it might be surprising to you that nobody likes barry. (americans living in israel voted 77% for mcBatshit, and israeli’s like him even less) there is a huge chip on the shoulder around these parts, itching to literally go nuclear on iran. there is cautious hope that iran will implode, improve, or do something that could let everyone here close the eyes that are always open in the back of their heads.
i’m taking a mental health break today, news blackout, search for a jon and kate marathon.
love to all of you. be kind to yourselves and everyone you encounter.
that’s what we can do. it hurts to care. that’s the only cure i can think of in this dark moment in time.

I am speechless before this. It is something, on a human level, that I thought I would never witness. Our “politics”, our “society”, our ” civilization” seemed beyond a true human reaction. A reaction to injustice that causes us to react on a visceral level. A collective no. This won’t stand. It is humbling. A disregard for their own lives in the face of injustice, a howl which translates into action …

to clarify: when i say my friends, i mean liberal thinking, loving, smart, informed people from all over the world along with native israeli’s. taking their temperature on all this is shocking. these are pot smoking artists, musicians, lawyers. warmongers all!!!
apparently all it takes is bearing witness to one bus or restaurant blown up by a suicide bomber to turn you. i can’t wait to get back to my island.
i’m heading back prob late august, the height of hurricane season. the random wrath of mother nature is easier to take.
i’ll never get that beautiful young woman’s bloody face out of my head.

@nojo: That’s just beyond fucking juvenile.

ADD: Newell brought the hammer, but late in the game. There was surprisingly little blowback from other commenters, like maybe one or two. Sad.

@nojo: OHFORFUCKSSAKE!!!!! The men “rubbing” her chest were her father and a doctor trying to stanch the flow of blood out of her gaping chest wound.

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