Sunday, June 21, 2009

Iran in Chaos

Yesterdays demonstrations and the brutal crackdown on the citizens in Iran have left us with some very disturbing videos and images. The chaos that is depicted in much of what happened yesterday is in sharp contrast to the videos that I posted earlier in the week that depict the demonstrators marching peacefully, at times in silence, through the streets of Iran. After the Supreme Leader's speech the other day, a crackdown was imminent on those who are wishing to express their right to vote freely and fairly, and have their voices of justice heard over the voices of oppression and tyranny. The videos I am going to post are all reportedly from yesterday.

This first video is of crowds that managed to gather to march through the streets:

This video is reportedly a confrontation between demonstrators and the Basij on a freeway in Iran. It looks like this video may have been shot from a rooftop:

I will give these next two videos a disclaimer for their graphic content. It turns out that images taken from these next two videos are some of the more famous images that came out of yesterday to show the extreme brutality and violence used by the security forces. I was surprised to hear that CNN aired these videos.

These two videos are from different angles from the same event and show a woman who has just been shot in the street. She dies on camera. The videos are extremely graphic and hard to watch so viewer beware. Still images of this same event can be seen here if it is easier for you.

It was later reported that the woman's name, is Neda.

A woman submitted a poem to the Huffington Post that talked about the loss of her "sister" and is apparently in reference to the woman in the two videos above.

Yesterday I wrote a note, with the subject line "tomorrow is a great day perhaps tomorrow I'll be killed." I'm here to let you know I'm alive but my sister was killed...

I'm here to tell you my sister died while in her father's hands
I'm here to tell you my sister had big dreams...
I'm here to tell you my sister who died was a decent person... and like me yearned for a day when her hair would be swept by the wind... and like me read "Forough" [Forough Farrokhzad]... and longed to live free and equal... and she longed to hold her head up and announce, "I'm Iranian"... and she longed to one day fall in love to a man with a shaggy hair... and she longed for a daughter to braid her hair and sing lullaby by her crib...

my sister died from not having life... my sister died as injustice has no end... my sister died since she loved life too much... and my sister died since she lovingly cared for people...

my loving sister, I wish you had closed your eyes when your time had come... the very end of your last glance burns my soul....

sister have a short sleep. your last dream be sweet.

Yesterday, Mousavi was apparently taking part in the protests and released a statement that he was ready for death. President Obama released the following 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.

The world is watching. Below is another video of another man who has been shot and killed. There is some graphic content in this video as well:

According to CNN and some tweets that I am reading, it appears that demonstrators are continuing to gather in Iran on Sunday to continue to voice their opposition.


RT Unrest in Tehran continues. People are gathering in Vali-Asr, Enqelab and Baharaestan. Some others are protesting in front of UN office.


Today was the worst day in my life #Iranelection

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