Thursday, July 09, 2009
One significant event yesterday that not many seem to be reporting on is famed movie director Mohsen Makhmalbaf's speech at the European Parliament yesterday, asking Europe not to recognize Ahmadinejad. Mohsen Sazegara mentioned this speech at the top of his video yesterday (Persian), and you can see an article on the speech here, and the speech in full in Persian here (automatically translated here).
You may remember him giving a speech on YouTube a week or so ago asking Mousavi to give orders to the people to strike and resist, and I played around with that speech a bit, adding English and Persian subtitles along with some music.
As for why this is important - well, the EU is Iran's largest trading partner. Some articles will tell you that it's China but this is only when taking individual countries into account; the EU as a whole is much more important to Iran than China is.
The Guardian had an article yesterday here on the role of Khamenei's son Mojtaba in running the Basij militia during the crackdown. IMO (also seems to be the opinion of those in the article) this will turn out to be a good thing in the end as there is no more obvious power grab than trying to give authority to one's son of all people. There just isn't any possible explanation for why Mojtaba should be given this much authority considering his lack of credentials everywhere else, and along with Khamenei's open support of Ahmadinejad he has come to be seen as nothing more than your average power-hungry despot.
It's 3 pm in Iran now and the governor of Tehran (no surprise) has said that it will crush any protests. We'll see.
Tehran Bureau has an article from a few days ago here on the significance of 18 Tir.