Support Freedom in Iran

By 17 June, 2009 26

18 June, 2009
5:00 pmto6:30 pm

Since Friday’s election millions of Iranians have risked their lives to fight for democracy and freedom. Let’s show them that they are not alone. Come and show your support for human rights and freedom of expression in Iran.

Gather on the lawns of Parliament house this Thursday June 18 at 5pm for a candlelight vigil in support of the people of Iran.

PLEASE WEAR GREEN TO THE VIGIL.

RSVP on facebook and invite your friends.
http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=45759939980

How else can you help?
- Wear green in support of Iran.
- Join this group http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=97222527126

Contact Ben on 0404 206 781 for more information.

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26 Responses to Support Freedom in Iran
#1
Brandi4:35 pm, 17 Jun 09

Not keen. There is every likelihood that Ahmadinejad legitimately won the presidency. Polling conducted three weeks before the election (by a polling company whose work in the region for ABC News and the BBC has received an Emmy award) tipped him to win by at least 2 to 1.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/06/14/AR2009061401757.html?nav=rss_opinion/columns 

We may not like what the guy has to say, but the people of Iran freely voted him in and we have no right to meddle in the democratic process of another sovereign nation.

#2
johnboy4:36 pm, 17 Jun 09

My one concern with this is whether a bunch of anglo infidels joining hands with the Iranian diaspora here in Canberra will help or hinder the cause of the reformist protestors in Iran?

On the one hand I certainly want to support them.

On the other hand I wouldn’t want to give them any confidence that when the tanks roll and the secret police start dragging them away to torture chambers that we’ll actually do anything real to help them (because let’s face it, we probably won’t beyond putting a stamp on a letter for Amnesty, which isn’t much consolation when the pliers are ripping out your fingernails).

I’m curious as to other’s thoughts.

#3
johnboy4:38 pm, 17 Jun 09

Brandi said :

Not keen. There is every likelihood that Ahmadinejad legitimately won the presidency. Polling conducted three weeks before the election (by a polling company whose work in the region for ABC News and the BBC has received an Emmy award) tipped him to win by at least 2 to 1.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/06/14/AR2009061401757.html?nav=rss_opinion/columns 

We may not like what the guy has to say, but the people of Iran freely voted him in and we have no right to meddle in the democratic process of another sovereign nation.

On the other hand I’ve seen first hand accounts that results were declared before polling had finished in some areas. Which would appear to be pretty conclusive to me.

#4
FC4:38 pm, 17 Jun 09

johnboy said :

My one concern with this is whether a bunch of anglo infidels joining hands with the Iranian diaspora here in Canberra will help or hinder the cause of the reformist protestors in Iran?

On the one hand I certainly want to support them.

On the other hand I wouldn’t want to give them any confidence that when the tanks roll and the secret police start dragging them away to torture chambers that we’ll actually do anything real to help them (because let’s face it, we probably won’t beyond putting a stamp on a letter for Amnesty, which isn’t much consolation when the pliers are ripping out your fingernails).

I’m curious as to other’s thoughts.

Good points. I feel similarly.

#5
Brandi4:42 pm, 17 Jun 09

Indeed, Robert Fisk was reporting concerns that 5 million votes were counted in two hours.

But then it doesn’t take long for a landslide to become apparent on voting nights in Oz. And Ahmadinejad may not be the sporting type to sit on the results for a few hours just to please the public.

#6
grundy4:49 pm, 17 Jun 09

Let them sort their own dirty washing out…
Why do we need to play ‘world police’ in Canberra? :P

#7
Woody Mann-Caruso5:04 pm, 17 Jun 09

Not keen. There is every likelihood that Ahmadinejad legitimately won the presidency.

Ya reckon?

#8
Woody Mann-Caruso5:19 pm, 17 Jun 09

(Seriously, though, this is a better analysis.)

#9
peterh6:09 pm, 17 Jun 09

when freedom of expression is challenged here, I will protest. I don’t know enough about the iranian voting system to give an educated view.

#10
Thumper6:16 pm, 17 Jun 09

The word democracy means something different in Iran than it does here.

That’s how it is.

Woody is correct.

#11
johnboy6:25 pm, 17 Jun 09

Unless the NY Times’ Roger Cohen is outright lying he’s documented a first hand account of voter fraud:

    He was from the Interior Ministry. He showed his ID card. He said he’d worked there 30 years. He said he hadn’t been allowed in; nor had most other employees. He said the votes never got counted. He said numbers just got affixed to each candidate.

.

And Peterh, for the very last time, if you have no knowledge of an issue (by your own admission) please refrain from commenting for the sake of it.

#12
BerraBoy686:26 pm, 17 Jun 09

A few weeks ago, my wife invited one of her work colleagues and her husband over for dinner. They have been in Australia for only about 6 months having arrived her from Iran. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but it certainly wasn’t to quite taken with two very nice western oriented people that love democracy, sport, drink alcohol (and did so in their own country), hate oppression, hate religious intolerance (!) etc. What’s more they said they could not longer live under such an oppressive regime and that everybody they know in Iran feels the same way.

I’ll be there, JB. Not because it might change things in Iran in a hurry, but because I know for a fact that the Iranian nationals here will let their friends and family in Iran know that they are not all tarred with the same brush and that they do have support, as limited in effect as it might be.

Moral support or a butterfly flapping its wings? Most likely the former but I hope for the latter…

#13
luther_bendross6:56 pm, 17 Jun 09

Hang on John, I feel it necessary here to defend Peterh’s comment. I think (and please, anyone feel free to dispute this here) that Peter was simply saying that due to his limited understanding of Iranian politics that he couldn’t demonstrate in this cause, and probably not for the opposing side either. This is his opinion, and if this site is not based predominantly on opinion then I’ll eat my Akubra. I think here that his ‘opinion’ is your ‘posting for the sake of it’.

For a thread that should be based on the discussion of free speech (an enigma within a riddle within a religious country), your response to him didn’t seem to promote this.

And with that, I shall get off my soap box.

#14
johnboy7:15 pm, 17 Jun 09

I’m talking about a consistent pattern, not just this one comment Luther. Any further discussion is best sent via email as it’s offtopic.

#15
gannet8:42 pm, 17 Jun 09

Another way to support is here: https://secure.avaaz.org/en/iran_vote_truth/?cl=255174668&v=3505

As for the suggestion that it was ‘legitimate’ : http://www.juancole.com/2009/06/stealing-iranian-election.html

#16
nathan5:54 am, 18 Jun 09

Re the Washington Post poll: here are the details from the company who conducted the poll. Note that in response to the question, “If the Presidential elections were held today, who would you vote for?”, of 1001 respondents, (76 + 151 + 274) = 501 = 50% would not commit to a candidate.

Not sure about you, but if I lived under a more totalitarian regime than ours, and someone called me out of the blue asking my political preference, I may be reluctant to indicate my support for the opposition. Indeed, I may even run with “I’ll TOTALLY vote for the incumbent!”.

I’m sure the company’s credentials are impeccable; I’m not certain that the Iranian pollees would be convinced.

#17
nathan6:07 am, 18 Jun 09

nathan said :

…Peter was simply saying that due to his limited understanding of Iranian politics that he couldn’t demonstrate in this cause, and probably not for the opposing side either. This is his opinion…

Fence sitting is, by definition, the absence of an opinion. By his own admission, he doesn’t know enough about the topic to be able to form one.

#18
Beserk Keyboard Warr8:20 am, 18 Jun 09

These type of rallies are pointless and only serve to make the people involved feel good about themselves without having to actually go to any real effort. Like the Australian Government will wave their magic wand and go “there you go, fixed”.

In my opinion giving your local Salvo ten bucks would do more good for the world than 5000 Arts students linking hands raising “awareness”.

I’m sure it impresses other left leaning public servants at dinner parties when you can ramble on about worldly issues that you actually know very little about, like Iranian politics for example.

My point is, if you really want to do something positive, choose something where you can actually make a difference rather than wasting money printing t-shirts that’ll make good dipstick rags.

#19
Brandi9:31 am, 18 Jun 09

Robert Fisk seems to find plenty of opportunity to report freely within Iran, and he says that the police and the military in Tehran are handling protests and counter-protests with surprising moderation (at least, anecdotally):

http://search.abc.net.au/search/click.cgi?url=http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2009/06/17/2600571.htm&rank=3

So far events don’t seem significantly worse than the mass protests in Jakarta a few years ago. Yet despite the vile transgressions of Indonesian military elements we haven’t made a pariah state of them – that would be inconvenient.

#20
Brandi9:32 am, 18 Jun 09

(Not to mention corrupt Indonesian elections…)

#21
peterh11:07 am, 18 Jun 09

johnboy said :

I’m talking about a consistent pattern, not just this one comment Luther. Any further discussion is best sent via email as it’s offtopic.

All,
I used this site to try and understand the situation, as I was unaware of the events unfolding in Iran. In reflection, if I was able to attend the vigil, I would. To have a crackdown in a country that was being touted as the new islamic republic of the magnitude that we are seeing here will lead to revolution instead of evolution for the regime. The removal of access to the internet, fighting in the university campuses, expulsion of foreigners for the beginning of the cleansing of the country, these are all steps taken by other nations which have led to civil unrest, fighting and the deaths of innocents. The Iranian people are not averse to the Islamic republic, they just don’t believe that their vote was counted, or recorded as per their wishes as individuals in the voting system. This is something that I would protest against. If the election was allowed to run its course as an independent event, with no input from the government or the militia, the results may have been different. I have spoken at length to a friend who is iranian, his insight and the links / information posted on the RiotACT allowed me to be able to form an opinion.

#22
Skidbladnir11:25 am, 18 Jun 09

You use an explicitly “online forum for News and Views in the Canberra (ACT) Region” to find information and form an opinion on domestic political issues in Iran?
Seriously?

#23
peterh12:23 pm, 18 Jun 09

Skidbladnir said :

You use an explicitly “online forum for News and Views in the Canberra (ACT) Region” to find information and form an opinion on domestic political issues in Iran?
Seriously?

considering the opinions that are presented here, and the wealth of information that seems to come with the commenters and the links that they provide, yes, skid, I do. I also find out about the broader canberra perception of events overseas through our own involvement, be it a rally, protest or other event that canberrans attend. I don’t read the crimes, I don’t watch the news. I have no idea what is going on in the rest of the world. I rely on the riotact to provide me with information as it comes to hand, that I feel is relevant to me, from a canberra perspective.

#24
p112:55 pm, 18 Jun 09

So far this page alone has eleven links of outside websites on the subject. So this page is actually not a bad place to learn more*, even if it is supposedly a Canberra specific blag.

* – I make no judgements or assumptions about the accuracy or balance of that information.

#25
jakez10:38 am, 19 Jun 09

I’m not convinced Ahmenidejad lost either however I think that point is rather moot.

Firstly, I don’t think Ahemenidejad is legitimate simply because he won some election. There are millions of Iranians who did not vote for him, do not support him, and I believe they have a right to self determination.

Secondly, putting aside my anarchist ways. Considering the constitutional arrangements of Iran, any election is far from a legitimate expression of democratic will.

Thirdly, the election is just a catalyst for a broader movement that combines a wide range of ‘reformist’ beliefs ranging from simply liking Mousavi’s brand of tyranny better to radical calls for an end to the Ayatollah’s regime and a complete opening of Iran as a secular and pro-western nation-state (which is what Iran should be, except that whole Shah thing made people cranky).

#26
Jim Jones11:12 am, 19 Jun 09

jakez said :

Firstly, I don’t think Ahemenidejad is legitimate simply because he won some election. There are millions of Iranians who did not vote for him, do not support him, and I believe they have a right to self determination.

As much as I’m no great fan of Ahmenidejad, that statement could be made about *all* democratically elected political leaders.

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