Saturday, June 20, 2009

The Demonstration

Most major news outlets are still reporting that a large opposition demonstration will go ahead at 16:00 Tehran time (12.30 London).

There is an air of foreboding about this following the remarks by the Supreme Leader of Iran that:

"The candidates in the election should be very careful what they say and how they behave," he said. "If they want to break the law, they will be responsible for the bloodshed, for the riots taking place and for any form of unrest."

Having had nothing to do with Iran in my life, my interest in this is simply a recognition that a growing number of Iranians want freedom. What passes for democracy in Iran seems anything but and the irony of a state that claims to be based on pious principles is that when an election does not deliver the result it wants, it seems more than willing to fix the result.

We can only hope that the people of Iran in some way prevail against the elite forces that seek to repress them. This may be an Iranian issue to be settled in Iran but it is a cause that all those who value freedom can relate to.

Here is a link to Zahra Rahnavard's facebook page. She is the wife of the opposition leader Mir-Hossein Mousavi. The history of this man is far from spotless but if he recognises the need for greater freedom he is probably the best hope the people of Iran have.

My hope for today is that the forces of repression do not triumph. It is something that seems far from certain. Whatever happens today it is certain that the seeds of freedom have been sowed in Iran and the internet has taken a significant part in that. What harvest is reaped remains to be seen.

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