Skip to comments.Iran's senior ayatollah slams election, confirming split (ayatollah says what Obama won't)
Posted on 06/16/2009 6:44:12 PM PDT by pissant
TEHRAN, Iran Supporters of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his main rival in the disputed presidential election, Mir Hossein Mousavi, massed in competing rallies Tuesday as the country's most senior Islamic cleric threw his weight behind opposition charges that Ahmadinejad's re-election was rigged.
"No one in their right mind can believe" the official results from Friday's contest, Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri said of the landslide victory claimed by Ahmadinejad. Montazeri accused the regime of handling Mousavi's charges of fraud and the massive protests of his backers "in the worst way possible."
"A government not respecting people's vote has no religious or political legitimacy," he declared in comments on his official Web site. "I ask the police and army personals (personnel) not to 'sell their religion,' and beware that receiving orders will not excuse them before God."
(Excerpt) Read more at mcclatchydc.com ...
Is this guy the real deal or does “most senior” just mean he’s an old retired dude?
Seems pretty huge either way.
Well the one thing we can be sure of the imposter in chief Obama is not on the side that supports Freedom and Liberty the words are foreign to him.
well.. it is how things are done in Chicago so... nothing to see here, please move on.
Wow. This could be big, methinks.
Is this the reason Amanutjob is in Russia?
How does Ahmadinejad and his supporting clerics stay in power? No one seems on his side except the idiot Basij.
Obama’s on his side.
There is a heirarchy of Ayatollahs, and Montazeri is senior, but that does not necessarily mean he’s all that influential.
Montazeri may be senior, but he has been sidelined by the government for two decades at least. He is a perennial dissident and this statement is perfectly in character. It is also unfortunately just like his many other statements over the years that the government has successfully ignored. He is one of the “usual suspects”; if one or more of the OTHER Senior Ayatollahs were to make such a statement, it would be more significant.
A question has been raised about the importance of Mir Hossein Mousavi, and does his opinion matter in this situation?
What's the difference both candidates were chosen by Hitler.
I actually think the ayatollah overturning the results would be a bad thing as Hussein would then declare the dawn of a new era in US - Iran relations. Meanwhile the nuclear weapons program would continue like never before.
Basij has all the weapons, and we can all see that is a big part of how they continue to stay in power.
I’m hoping more for an extended civil war and the overthrow of the mullahcracy.
Obama does not appear to identify with Western ideas about liberty, government, democracy. He appears to be more sympatico with people like Ahmadinejad, Chavez, Ortega.
Thanks for the info!
While I’m very pleased to watch internal political strife undermine the legitimacy of Islamic theocracy in Iran, I think we really need this stop a minute, take a deep breath, and ask ourselves why we should be backing either faction.
Neither is friendly to American policy in the Mideast (Mousavi is one of the chief supporters of Hamas in Iran), both support continuation of the Iranian nuclear program, and neither envisions any kind of fundamental reform of the Iranian political system to something closer to western secular democracy.
The biggest difference between them is that they represent somewhat different factions of the reigning Iranian political elite: Ahmadinejad represents the portions of the military and clerical establishment who believe that Islamic revolutionary purity mandates massive redistribution of resources toward the poor (you can think of him as sort of a Iranian Chavez in this respect), while Montazeri represents a sort of quasi-fascistic fusion of the most corrupt segments of the Iranian Rich, the massive business interests of Revolutionary Guards, and the worldly segments of the clergy.
Both groups are somewhere between political parties and mafias, and neither group has any interest at all in surrendering power to something more close resembling a representative government, in terms of advancing American interests in a very real sense we might as well be trying to choose for example between various factions of Hamas or Hezbollah. All we can be certain of is that if we try to back one faction over the other were are unlikely to be satisfied whatever the outcome, so the smart thing to do is to produce general statements of support for the will of the Iranian people (and indeed, the will of large numbers of Iranians will be thwarted whatever the outcome) without trapping ourselves into appearing to the Iranian people to be backing either faction of their oppressors.
Which, it seems to me, is pretty much the current US policy, and IMO the best of the bad choices under the circumstances.
It seems big, but my understanding is that the new boss isn't much better than Imanutjob.
Extraordinary scenes: Robert Fisk in Iran
Posted 1 hour 30 minutes ago
Updated 36 minutes ago
‘The authorities are losing control of what’s happening on the streets and that’s very dangerous and damaging to them’ (www.flickr.com: Shahram Sharif)
Audio: The Independent’s Middle East correspondent is defying Iran’s media ban. (ABC News) The long-standing Middle East correspondent for The Independent, Robert Fisk, is defying the government crackdown on foreign media reporting in Iran.
As he explains, he has been travelling around the streets of Tehran all day and most of the night and things are far from quiet:
I’ve just been witnessing a confrontation, in dusk and into the night, between about 15,000 supporters of Ahmadinejad - supposedly the president of Iran - who are desperate to down the supporters of Mr Mousavi, who thinks he should be the president of Iran.
There were about 10,000 Mousavi men and women on the streets, with approximately 500 Iranian special forces, trying to keep them apart.
It was interesting that the special forces - who normally take the side of Ahmadinejad’s Basij militia - were there with clubs and sticks in their camouflage trousers and their purity white shirts and on this occasion the Iranian military kept them away from Mousavi’s men and women.
In fact at one point, Mousavi’s supporters were shouting ‘thank you, thank you’ to the soldiers.
One woman went up to the special forces men, who normally are very brutal with Mr Mousavi’s supporters, and said ‘can you protect us from the Basij?’ He said ‘with God’s help’.
It was quite extraordinary because it looked as if the military authorities in Tehran have either taken a decision not to go on supporting the very brutal militia - which is always associated with the presidency here - or individual soldiers have made up their own mind that they’re tired of being associated with the kind of brutality that left seven dead yesterday - buried, by the way secretly by the police - and indeed the seven or eight students who were killed on the university campus 24 hours earlier.
Quite a lot of policeman are beginning to smile towards the demonstrators of Mr Mousavi, who are insisting there must be a new election because Mr Ahmadinejad wasn’t really elected. Quite an extraordinary scene.
I’m not backing either one. I want to see strife, riots, civil war. Let them destroy their infrastructure before they get nukes.
If Fisk is saying that the demonstrators are getting traction thats a good sign the opposite is happening.
Fisk is an almost perfect wrong-way indicator.
And I’m sorry thats so in this case.