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Ear to the Ground

Iran to Recount Disputed Votes

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Posted on Jun 16, 2009
AP photo / Ben Curtis

Tens of thousands of supporters of leading opposition presidential candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi turn out to protest Friday’s election results at a mass rally in Azadi (Freedom) Square in Tehran.

Iran’s Guardian Council has announced a recount of disputed votes from last week’s election as massive protests continued in the streets of Tehran. It’s not clear how extensive the recount will be or whether it could threaten to upset the re-election of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who flew to Russia on Tuesday for a meeting there.

A spokesman was quoted by state media saying the council was “ready to recount the disputed ballot boxes claimed by some candidates, in the presence of their representatives,” and, “It is possible that there may be some changes in the tally after the recount.”

It does not appear likely that Ahmadinejad will lose his job, though a recount seemed like a remote possibility 24 hours ago.

Telegraph:

A spokesman said it was “ready to recount the disputed ballot boxes claimed by some candidates, in the presence of their representatives”.

“It is possible that there may be some changes in the tally after the recount,” spokesman Abbasali Kadkhodai was quoted as saying by the official IRNA news agency.

But a senior reformist ally of defeated candidates Mir-Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karoubi said they wanted a rerun rather than a recount of “a few ballot boxes”.

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By Folktruther, June 17, 2009 at 9:23 pm Link to this comment

That is the central historical problem, KDelphi, that people identify with their own oppression and the oppression of other people.  Code Pink and their leader Medea Bengimin identifies with Obama who is constructing a postmodern police state precisely to repress people like them.  this is not because he is mean, but because it is the only way a neoliberal power system can retain power when both its political and economic institutions are obsolete.

But people don’t want any trouble so they hunker down personally and support oppressive power.  this is a political insane response.  But as the psychiatrist Lang argued, personal insanity is a rational personal response to an insane society.

what, unfortunately, is needed is a rational communal response.  And my neighbors, KDelphi, are just like yours.

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By KDelphi, June 17, 2009 at 7:38 pm Link to this comment

Thanks, Folktruther…here’s the link, I think, for anyone interested.
http://www.counterpunch.org/lindorff06172009.html

“Imagine, if you will, what this government’s response would be to having hundreds of thousands of American protesters gather in the center of Washington, DC without a permit, to protest the policies of the national government.  There would be riot police in the thousands, some mounted on horseback. There would be federal troops. There would be police charges against demonstrators. There would be tear gas and arrests….

How do we know this?  It happens every time there are major protests in Washington—even when protests are granted permits…...If the Pentagon is teaching its people to equate protest with “low-level terrorism,” how different, really, is Washington from Tehran?”


I was also going to point out the peaceful protests at the Democratic Convention, but….might end up in a dog cage. Or, the nurses and doctors arrested at the Senate Hearing on health care reform, or Code Pink constantly arrested, even though they inexplicably support Obama…

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By boggs, June 17, 2009 at 6:58 pm Link to this comment

WHAT!!!!
They’re not going to let the SUPREME COURT decide who won????

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By Folktruther, June 17, 2009 at 6:31 pm Link to this comment

KDelphi, while Obama maintains the rhetoric of ‘peaceful dissent’ the Pentagon under Obama has develop a handbook for American troops, to be used against the Amerian people, that defines demonstrations by Americans as ‘low level Terrorism.’  there is an article in counterpunch today that describes it in detail.

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By Inherit The Wind, June 17, 2009 at 5:45 am Link to this comment

Shingo, June 17 at 2:09 am #

Inherit The Wind,

“Yet he wins by a landslide.  How can that be?  Scraping by with .5% would be more in order.  That is, if the election was NOT fixed.”

Sure, but when Mubarak declared the first non rigged elections in Egypt and ended up winning by a greater margin than he did with the rigged elections, Washington applauded his “reforms”.
*******************************************

Yeah it reminds me of the joke about (I think) Assad in Syria:

“Mr. President! You have won re-election abut a 99.8% margin! Only .2% voted against you!”

“Yes? Well there is one thing I’d like to know.”

“What is that, Mr. President?”

“Their names!”

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By Shingo, June 16, 2009 at 11:09 pm Link to this comment

Inherit The Wind,

“Yet he wins by a landslide.  How can that be?  Scraping by with .5% would be more in order.  That is, if the election was NOT fixed.”

Sure, but when Mubarak declared the first non rigged elections in Egypt and ended up winning by a greater margin than he did with the rigged elections, Washington applauded his “reforms”.

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By hippie4ever, June 16, 2009 at 10:51 pm Link to this comment

Clearly the Iranians failed to learn the proper technique of election fraud a la George W Bush. The results should have been very close, a real cliffhanger. That way people could choose to believe the results without insulting, well, their own intelligence. Or whatever passes for that today.

Don’t the Iranians watch YouTube or read any of the dozens of books discussing the 2000 Coup d’Etat, American style? Incredibly amateurish performance…if only Washington had been able to spread its type of “democracy” there.

Oh right, they did and it failed. That’s way we need to expand the Crusades past Afganistan and Pakistan into the motherlode; we need a really big victory, like in Vietnam.

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By KDelphi, June 16, 2009 at 2:35 pm Link to this comment

It sounds like deja vu all over again, to me…and an excuse to expand the “overseas contingency operation”.

Is the uS really in a position to be questioning the honesty of another country’s elections?? I hear Boner and others, all over MSM, flapping their big hawk wings for “freedom”—so easy for him to say.

More hope ‘n change..has anyone else noticed the “obaminization” , that the west seems to be trying to put on every election in the ME?

http://www.wsws.org/articles/2009/jun2009/iran-j16.shtml

“...This was followed by a statement from President Barack Obama. “I think that the democratic process, free speech, the ability for folks to peacefully dissent, all those are universal values and need to be respected,” he said. “Whenever I see violence perpetrated on people who are peacefully dissenting, and whenever the American people see that, I think they’re rightfully troubled.”

No such qualms were expressed by Washington when the troops of the US-backed Shah shot down demonstrators by the thousands in 1978 and 1979. At the height of this bloodbath, then-US National Security Advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski told the Shah that the US would “back him to the hilt.” Brzezinski has re-emerged as a prominent foreign policy adviser to the Obama administration.


Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s announcement Monday that he had instructed the Guardian Council to investigate charges of vote-rigging was aimed at least as much at placating this pressure from the imperialist powers as at diffusing tensions within Iran itself.

This pressure has no more to do with democratic rights in Iran than the arms and support provided to the Shah did 30 years ago. The aim of the US and the rest of the Western powers is to fully subjugate Iran in order to further their strategic interests in the region and fully exploit its massive energy resources.

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By Inherit The Wind, June 16, 2009 at 2:22 pm Link to this comment

You guys remind me of Commmunists in the 1930’s.  They leap through any hoop, say anything and do anything before EVER admitting Stalin was a genocidal tyrannical maniac.  Every question of Stalin and his motives was met with a blizzard of attacks.  And Heaven help ANY person who was a Communist if he didn’t loudly tout the Party line that Stalin was the People’s Friend.  This despite him “disappearing” American CP members who went to Moscow.

Ahmedinijad KNEW he was going to lose—that’s why here, on TD, there’s an article from before the vote of him blaming Jews and Hitler for his impending loss.  Yet he wins by a landslide.  How can that be?  Scraping by with .5% would be more in order.  That is, if the election was NOT fixed.

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By matti, June 16, 2009 at 12:51 pm Link to this comment

Here’s a link to that P. Craig Roberts article:

http://www.counterpunch.org/roberts06162009.html

And here’s one to the G. Greenwald article:

http://www.commondreams.org/view/2009/06/16-1

Definitely something fishy going on here, just as ~Folktruther~ suggests.

I would be wary of over-analogizing, however. The “student” movements against Chavez in Venezuela may seem very similar to the -apparently- student driven movement in Iran, but I don’t think the likeness goes much deeper than the surface.

I think its important not to take our Anti-U.S. Empire stance so far that it becomes a “Pro-V.C./Pro-Mao” one, if you know what I mean.

From what little info I have gathered at this point, Roberts’ comparison to the “color revolutions” in Georgia and the Ukraine seems most apt: a genuinely large and discontented minority, skillfully used and manipulated by foreign agents of State and Enterprise, to act more decisively and drastically than they otherwise would have. The purpose being to exploit the resultant crisis for unknown- but likely Imperial/Corporatist-Globalist, and therefore worrisome to “little-D” democrats- ends.

To me, the biggest “up-shot” of all this, as far as its effect on the “American Public”, is the more complete and perhaps final cementing of the total misunderstanding of Iran’s Governmental Structure in the Public Mind.

After all, people may well ask themselves, if the President of Iran is not the head fuhrer of the nation like the President of the U.S. is, then why are there such large, violent clashes over “fraud” in the election to that office?

The mullahs who are in fact in charge (or are they? I’ve never been there, have I?) are -not just in this article, but in this whole “meta-story” as we might call it- here brilliantly relegated to the status of some kind of “post-2000 TV-version of the U.S. Supreme Court”-esque role of “approving” the election or “ordering a recount”.

In fact, the public memory and confusion and discontent over the 2000 Prez. Election seems to be playing a major “crypto-role” in this whole thing.

Go check out the comments on this article on Iran on Alternet to see what I mean:

http://www.alternet.org/world/140626/has_the_election_been_stolen_in_iran

The nastiest, most clever part of all of this seems to me to be focus without critical examination given to the Iranian Opposition Candidates’ demand for an entirely new election. All of those lefties who should be the thorn in the side of the Empire’s clever games will have to overcome a huge psychological hurdle to NOT associate this legitimate and democratic call with the “Democrats” total capitulationist/collusionist failure to do so in 2000. And therefore only the most informed, most self-integrated, and most determined/least otherwise occupied, will be able to resist total and uncritical sympathy with the “green revolution” in Iran.

Brilliant.

Evil. But brilliant.

Let’s hold out hope that the genuine Democratic Revolution will prevail in Iran, despite the apparent addition of Corporatist-Globalist/Imperialist shennanigans to the already strong theocratic/authoritarian resistance and reaction to it.

The wish to live one’s life openly and to limit Government to a representitive body tasked to defend and ensure basic rights is, of course, a most decidedly UN-evil thing.

Let’s hope those in Iran who are after this good thing can survive this current mess and finally get their wish (back again).

-matti.

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By Folktruther, June 16, 2009 at 11:34 am Link to this comment

Glenn Grenwald, in a piece today on CommonDreams, after adroitly stating that most of the truthers on the Iran Election don’t know what they are talking about, points out that the most vigorous assertions that there was fraud in the election is coming from those most in favor of bombing Iran including nuclear bombing.  Most of them Gops or Zionists.  and that is one of the points of the current fraudulent media campaign.

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By Folktruther, June 16, 2009 at 11:22 am Link to this comment

Dennis Ross, the Zionist hawk that OBama put in to deal with Iran, is being removed and transferred elsewhere, no doubt because of the US claiming an overwhelming election mandate for Ahmedinejad was a fraud. What is actually fraudulent is the mainstream media, and all the progressive newsletters and blogs, following the US lead.  Europe has already recognized Ahmadinejad as president.

This is further proof that the Obama regime doesn’t know what it is doing.  It did not pay sufficient attention ot the Rockafeller sponsored poll in Iran which predicted the outcome.  Now the American media, and fake Progressives, are stuck with egg on their face.  But it is a good learning experience for the American people.  You simply can’t trust what the Amerian and Progressive media tell you; you have to develop your own critical ability.

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By Folktruther, June 16, 2009 at 10:05 am Link to this comment

The massive fraud by the US media, including the Progressive media, in de-legitimatizing the Iranian election is becoming clearer.  It was discussed in a piece by Paul Craig Roberts today on Counterpunch.

The former head of the Pakistani military, Mirza Beig, announced over the radio yesterday that they have undisputed evidence of documents showing that the CIA spent 400 million dollars in the Iranian election, presumably to get Moussavi into power, by votes, fraud or violence.

Iranian society appears to be split along class lines, like Venzuela, with the richer and Eductated classes hating Ahmadinejad the way the Venzuelian rich hate Chavez. Ahmadinejad used Islam to unite the many ninorty ethnics in Iran, his base being the peasant and working class.  He is highly popular with them, being a samll man, about 5 feet tall, who is gutsy and sincere.  He is dispised by the rich and Educated classes, the former support of the Shah, and now supporting Moussavi.

Ahmedinejad won the last election in 2005 by the same amount, 62% of the votes.  A vote survey, funded by the Rockafeller fund, found the same vote proportion this time.  The only people for Moussavi were university students and graduates.  But since the CIA spent so much money, and Obama made a speech in Cairo, they expected the vote to be much closer.
And if Moussavi lost they could clain the vote was rigged and instigate a coup, as they did in 1953, putting the Shah in.

But the rural population, being theatened by the US and Israel, turned out in huge numbers to vote in Ahedinejad, who was vocal in his resistence to American and Israel imperialism.  So now the US zionist media is stuck with the absurdity of calling an overwhelming mandate a rigged election.  all elections of course are rigged in the sense that all the viable candidates are preselected by power, but given that, Iranian elections have always been considered clean by international observers.

After dark there have been attacks on the military installations of the Revolutionary Guards, creating some bloodshed.  Since American agents are inside the country, Special Forces trying to get the minorities to revolt, possibly a coup was contemplated after the election.  One of the leading members of the Assemby of Experts who supervise the Supreme Leader, Rafsanjani, was a Moussavi supporter, and was trying to organize for him.

The US media fraud makes war with Iran more likely, since the pressure on Obama to negoitiate after a rigged election diminishes.  And the editor of the New York Times himself certified that the election was rigged on the front page, just as Judith Miller last time certified on the front page that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction, leading to the Iraqi war.

This means that Obama is committed to what Tom Engleheart called the Irafpak war, the war with Iran, Iraz, Afghanistan, and Pakistan, ecompassing over three hundred million people.  This low intensity war will continue at least until the next presidental election, for the next four years.

Where will they get the money?

1.  gut people expenditures: Education, health, social security, medicare.

2. inflate the money.  That is why the current meeting in Russia by the major developing powers to replace the dollar as a reserve currency is of such importance.  To the extent they do so, foreigners will no longer fund the war against them.  And this may lead to harsh policies and instablity in the US.

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By rollzone, June 16, 2009 at 9:22 am Link to this comment

hello. REVOLT! seize this opportunity to join the 18th century; and we will overwhelm you with help to join the 21st century. the benefits of true democracy and liberties and freedoms to individual people are truly limitted only by your own imagination- not your government’s. the growing global community welcomes participation from every single decent person in the world, and you should be expressing your role in its developement. individual voices for democracy can be heard around the world. go democratic. my prayers are with you.

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By simak, June 16, 2009 at 8:29 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

how naive to think the guardian council will recount the ballet. they announced the recount to calm down the people. they don’t have the guts to reverse what the supreme leader has already rubber stamped. the reversal of the result will be a huge defeat for the leader and he will never allow it.  we must remember half of the 12 member council are appointed by the leader and the other half are as fanatic as khameneie. i have a better chance of wining a lottery than seeing the reversal of the vote.no matter how many ballot boxes are recounted.

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By skulz fontaine, June 16, 2009 at 6:20 am Link to this comment

Let’s see, that’s one for you and two for him. One for you and six for him. One for you and nineteen for him. See? Fair is fair.

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By idarad, June 16, 2009 at 4:57 am Link to this comment

Maybe the voice of the people (kind of) will carry the day…. we could learn something from Iran, Ukraine and take to the streets

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By ardee, June 16, 2009 at 4:50 am Link to this comment

I question the efficacy of a selective recount in the face of that 63% figure. If fraud was used to capture the election it must have been dramatically wide spread and even blatant.

While I am encouraged by an investigation taking place at all, as well as the massive demonstrations over this issue, it seems a bit of a whitewash may be in progress here.

I think that events in Iran are pretty darn important to the future peace of the Middle East and the entire world in fact, and a regime change that ousts Amadinajhad a step in the right direction. One small step at a time…..

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By C. Curtis Dillon, June 16, 2009 at 3:04 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The unfolding events in Iran mirror the bigger problem of theocratic power in many cultures of our world.  An association with God and the divinity it provides masks the unarguable fact that religious leaders are, unfortunately, human.  That means they suffer the same frailties we all confront ... greed, lust for power and even moral corruption.  They soon believe that they hold some special place in our society ... given their closeness to God and all.  And society tends to give them a pass on their transgressions because it believes that disputing a religious leader is akin to arguing with God.  In fact, the opposite should be true.  We must hold our religious leaders to a much higher standard and insist that their control comes with severe limitations.  The idea that a “supreme religious leader” has unlimited authority to rule on questions of temporal politics and foreign relations is a very dangerous concept.  It provides, as we have seen, a situation where the religious leader thwarts the political will of the people in a bid to keep or consolidate his power.  The grand ayatollah has made his first greedy and perhaps ultimately fatal mistake in assuming that his power is really absolute.  If these demonstrations continue, the likelihood of his overthrow rises because the people are starting to realize that absolute theocratic power is as dangerous as autocratic or even dictatorial power.  When the Iranian revolution overthrew the shah in 1979, I thought it would only be a matter of time before the perks and power of their positions drove these leaders to corrupt and unsustainable behavior.  I’m glad that the people of Iran are waking up to the fact that corrupt mullahs are no more acceptable than corrupt, despotic kings.  They need to throw all of these pretenders out and create a true, non-theocratic democracy based on the idea of equality and respect for all peoples.  Run these crooks out before they destroy your country.

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By Verdadero, June 16, 2009 at 2:14 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

This story is GRADE A BULLSHIT!

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