In praise of Iran’s brave rebels

Jan 4, 2018 by

by Brendan O’Neill, spiked:

Women defying archaic dress codes and ripping off their hijabs in public. Young hard-up people taking to the streets to rail against economic contraction and religious greed. ‘People are paupers while the mullahs live like gods!’, they holler. Democrats who no longer want to live by the stifling codes of Islamist theocracy committing the ultimate treason by chanting: ‘We don’t want an Islamic republic!’ People even tearing down images of their so-called supreme leader – Ayatollah Khamenei – in acts of high rebellion of the like Iran hasn’t seen for years. These rumblings in the Islamic republic, this deep democratic stirring, should cheer everyone who believes in freedom and choice. They have got 2018 off to a brilliant start.

It’s hard to tell from much of the mainstream media coverage in the West – especially in outlets like the BBC and the Guardian, whose flat, cautious coverage betrays a discomfort with the sight of masses of people flagrantly throwing off Islamist garb and rules – but what’s happening in Iran is monumental. Of course it’s impossible to predict how it will turn out (though more conflict seems certain). But right now, a week into the unrest, with at least 21 people dead and 450 slung in jail, we can say that the scale of the revolt is huge.

Not only in terms of the numbers of cities and towns that have been struck by dissent, from Mashhad in the north-east to Tehran itself to Kermanshah in the extreme west, where video has emerged of protesters capturing a member of the Revolutionary Guards. And not only in terms of the breadth of people involved, which includes the young working-classes, ‘alienated from a political system rigged by the ruling mullahs’, and middle-class Tehranis who seek a freer, more modern lifestyle. No, in terms of something else, too; in terms of what some of the protesters are demanding – an end to religious rule.

Read here

Read also: Eruption in Iran by Clifford D May, Washington Times

What no-one is telling you about Iran, By Michael Brown, Charisma

The Iranian uprising, by Melanie Phillips


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