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Posts Tagged ‘ Rafsanjani Sermon ’

  • 17 July 2009
  • Posted By Sanaz Tofighrad
  • Events in Iran, Human Rights in Iran, Iran Election 2009

Mowj: “State TV sold out Hashemi to China; censored the people”

According to Mowj Camp, the state TV (IRIB), which aired today’s Friday prayer live, “censored parts of Hashemi’s words and especially the people’s slogans.”

“One of the most important parts censored was the “Death to China” slogan for the killing of Muslims in China, which was being chanted today during Hashemi’s speech.”

“However, the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting sold out the head of the Assembly of Experts to China; value of and respect for the speaker of Tehran’s Friday prayer was sacrificed for Ahmadinejad’s good relations with the Chinese government; and his (Rafsanjani’s) criticism of the killing and suppressing Muslims in this country was censored for the benefit of this eastern communist neighbor.”

IRIB also repeatedly used slow motion, avoided pointing the camera at the green crowds and repeated the scenes that showed Ahmadinejad’s supporters holding his picture.

  • 17 July 2009
  • Posted By Patrick Disney
  • Events in Iran, Human Rights in Iran, Iran Election 2009

“Fear and terror less and less effective”

Another eyewitness account, emailed to us from a very close friend.

Made my way down the west side of Laleh Park, large crowd was gathered around a radio listening to Rafi give the sermons, moved down to Keshavarz Blvd, where people had already started to taunt the bassijis who look like teenagers with Darth Vader helmets that was one size too big for them.

The main slogans were “Baradar’e basiji chera Baradr Koshi” (“Brother basiji, why do you kill your brother?”, the speaker after Rafi was urging people to shout “death to America” and “death to Israel” people responded in mass by shouting “death to Russia” and “death to the dictator”, things started getting messy in 16 Azar street, I never knew that you can defuse the effect of tear gas if you hold a cigarette close to your face, who cares about second hand smoke when you are fighting a dictatorship… Anyways, they chased and people ran away, they caught few poor fellows who probably are in hospital now, but overall the fear and terror seems to get less and less effective, unless they decided to bring the big guns out one day, even then I do not think they will able to defeat these people

Sent from my TehranBerry® wireless device

  • 17 July 2009
  • Posted By Patrick Disney
  • Events in Iran, Human Rights in Iran, Iran Election 2009

Mousavi, Karroubi attend prayer, Khatami no-show

Reuters has reported that Mousavi was in attendance at today’s Friday prayer service, and this unconfirmed picture has been circulating around the internet reportedly showing Mousavi among the crowd:


Also, Raja News, a hardliner news website, reported that Khatami was not present at the Friday prayer today.  “Khatami’s absence at today’s Friday prayer led to complaints by Mousavi supporters who were asking why should Khatami be absent at such a sensitive situation?”

  • 17 July 2009
  • Posted By Sanaz Tofighrad
  • Events in Iran, Human Rights in Iran, Iran Election 2009

Eyewitness Account from Today

We received a call from an eyewitness in Tehran who told us what he saw at the Friday prayer.

Before the speech began, people where chanting three slogans:

  • Death to dictator, Liar, Liar
  • Hashemi, Hashemi, take back my vote
    Hashemi, Hashemi, we support you
    Hashemi, Hashemi, silence will make you a traitor
  • Honorable clerics, support (us), support (us)

They were saying the last slogan so loud that several clerics were touched and took green items from the people and raised them in the air.

A very unusual event occurred before Rafsanjani’s speech, when the head of the organization that oversees the Friday prayers (Taqavi) spoke.  In Friday prayers, people are supposed to repeat what the speakers chant.  Today, it was different.  When Taqavi said “Death to America,” people responded “Death to Russia” or “Death to China” instead. Also, when he said “The blood in our veins, is a gift to our leader,” people said “The blood in our veins, is a gift to our nation.” According to our witness, “whenever Taqavi mentioned the name of the Supreme Leader, people would whistle and boo.” Typically, when the Supreme Leader’s name is mentioned people chant “salavat” (a phrase in Arabic meaning “peace be upon Prophet Mohammad).

  • Our witness also said that “right before Rafsanjani’s speech, police used tear gas to disperse the crowd. People, however, did not move and started to make fires to reduce the effect of the gas.
  • “About half of Ahmadinejad supporters got up and left in the middle of Rafsanjani’s speech.”
  • “East of Tehran University, it was so crowded that men and women were mixed up. (In Friday prayers, men and women are separated).  Ahmadinejad supporters were telling them “you reek of infidelity.”
  • “About 2 out of 5 people were holding Ayatollah Montazeri’s picture.
  • Our witness, who was hit by a baton on his back, added “I was able to get away after I got hit once, but as I was leaving they were beating people ruthlessly.”
  • 17 July 2009
  • Posted By Patrick Disney
  • Events in Iran, Human Rights in Iran, Iran Election 2009

Rafsanjani sermon available on youtube

(h/t the Guardian) – Rafsanjani’s entire speech is now available via youtube, and can be seen in Persian here:

Sign the Petition


7,350 signatures

Tell Google: Stop playing Persian Gulf name games!

May 14, 2012
Larry Page
Chief Executive Officer
Google Inc.
1600 Amphitheatre Parkway
Mountain View, California 94043

Dear Mr. Page:

It has come to our attention that Google has begun omitting the title of the Persian Gulf from its Google Maps application. This is a disconcerting development given the undisputed historic and geographic precedent of the name Persian Gulf, and the more recent history of opening up the name to political, ethnic, and territorial disputes. However unintentionally, in adopting this practice, Google is participating in a dangerous effort to foment tensions and ethnic divisions in the Middle East by politicizing the region’s geographic nomenclature. Members of the Iranian-American community are overwhelmingly opposed to such efforts, particularly at a time when regional tensions already have been pushed to the brink and threaten to spill over into conflict. As the largest grassroots organization in the Iranian-American community, the National Iranian American Council (NIAC) calls on Google to not allow its products to become propaganda tools and to immediately reinstate the historically accurate, apolitical title of “Persian Gulf” in all of its informational products, including Google Maps.

Historically, the name “Persian Gulf” is undisputed. The Greek geographer and astronomer Ptolemy referencing in his writings the “Aquarius Persico.” The Romans referred to the "Mare Persicum." The Arabs historically call the body of water, "Bahr al-Farsia." The legal precedent of this nomenclature is also indisputable, with both the United Nations and the United States Board of Geographic Names confirming the sole legitimacy of the term “Persian Gulf.” Agreement on this matter has also been codified by the signatures of all six bordering Arab countries on United Nations directives declaring this body of water to be the Persian Gulf.

But in the past century, and particularly at times of escalating tensions, there have been efforts to exploit the name of the Persian Gulf as a political tool to foment ethnic division. From colonial interests to Arab interests to Iranian interests, the opening of debate regarding the name of the Persian Gulf has been a recent phenomenon that has been exploited for political gain by all sides. Google should not enable these politicized efforts.

In the 1930s, British adviser to Bahrain Sir Charles Belgrave proposed to rename the Persian Gulf, “Arabian Gulf,” a proposal that was rejected by the British Colonial and Foreign offices. Two decades later, the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company resurrected the term during its dispute with Mohammad Mossadegh, the Iranian Prime Minister whose battle with British oil interests would end in a U.S.-sponsored coup d'état that continues to haunt U.S.-Iran relations. In the 1960s, the title “Arabian Gulf” became central to propaganda efforts during the Pan-Arabism era aimed at exploiting ethnic divisions in the region to unite Arabs against non-Arabs, namely Iranians and Israelis. The term was later employed by Saddam Hussein to justify his aims at territorial expansion. Osama Bin Laden even adopted the phrase in an attempt to rally Arab populations by emphasizing ethnic rivalries in the Middle East.

We have serious concerns that Google is now playing into these efforts of geographic politicization. Unfortunately, this is not the first time Google has stirred controversy on this topic. In 2008, Google Earth began including the term “Arabian Gulf” in addition to Persian Gulf as the name for the body of water. NIAC and others called on you then to stop using this ethnically divisive propaganda term, but to no avail. Instead of following the example of organizations like the National Geographic Society, which in 2004 used term “Arabian Gulf” in its maps but recognized the error and corrected it, Google has apparently decided to allow its informational products to become politicized.

Google should rectify this situation and immediately include the proper name for the Persian Gulf in Google Maps and all of its informational products. The exclusion of the title of the Persian Gulf diminishes your applications as informational tools, and raises questions about the integrity and accuracy of information provided by Google.

We strongly urge you to stay true to Google’s mission – “to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful” – without distorting or politicizing that information. We look forward to an explanation from you regarding the recent removal of the Persian Gulf name from Google Maps and call on you to immediately correct this mistake.



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