Random commentary and senseless acts of blogging.
The first Republican president once said, "While the people retain their virtue and their vigilance, no administration by any extreme of wickedness or folly can seriously injure the government in the short space of four years." If Mr. Lincoln could see what's happened in these last three-and-a-half years, he might hedge a little on that statement.
Prisoners of Azkaban
Tuesday, August 06, 2002
Glenn Frazier reports that police in Iran used heavy violence last night to break up demonstrations marking the anniversary of the Constitutional Revolution in 1906. How severe the violence was is hard to say - no major news service seems to be reporting anything at all, but phone service to and from Iran was interrupted, a strong sign that something did happen. Rantburg links to a number of stories giving some details. It should be noted that these stories come from the website of SMCCDI, an Iranian anti-government student group, so I feel some hesitancy fully accepting them with no confirming source.
There are some interesting Iran stories on the web today. You can read here how the mullahs are trying to use anti-American nationalism to prop up their sagging popularity. It's sagged so badly that, as this blog has already discussed, the government now has to import Arab thugs, due to a lack of Iranians willing to do their dirty work.
Several opposition newspapers have recently been closed - but they've re-organized on the web. News is still circulating, and the popularity of Internet cafes in Iran seems to be booming. Unfortunately, the article gives no URLs, probably because the sites involved are in Farsi.
One reason for the rising opposition movement is the failing economy. Prostitution is spreading, due to a lack of other economic opportunities for young women. There is discussion of using the traditional Shia practice of temporary marriage to substitute for prostitution. Since these 'marriages' would last for a few hours and involve money changing hands, the distinction between this and prostitution is a rather subtle one. The proposal to label these legalized bordellos as 'Chastitiy Houses' has a nice Orwellian ring.