Thursday, February 17, 2011

Iran's dictators support some social-media uprisings, oppose others.

Iran's dictatorship struggles to find ways to support the democracy movements spreading through other Muslim countries while violently suppressing free expression at home. They attempt this to accomplish this act of radical compartmentalization by characterizing the democracy movements as expressions of Islamist, anti-secular ideology.  In doing so, they contradict most participants in these movements and many of their western supporters who tend to minimize the role of political Islam and portray Islamists as moderate or even secular. In a speech broadcast on the main station of Iranian state TV on February 4, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran's so-called "Supreme Leader", announced Iran's support for the uprisings in Tunis and Egypt, characterizing them as representative of popular support for theocratic rule, and as fundamentally opposing Israel and the U.S.  Khamenei also began enunciating Iran's opposition to moderate, non-Islamist elements within those uprisings.  Those he characterized as the products of American and Israeli conspiracies to counter the wave of Islamism he purports to be sweeping the region.  (Click here to view video of his speech.)

After violently suppressing peaceful pro-democracy demonstrators in Teheran with police and troops on Monday, Iran's rulers showed their vision of legitimate expressions of Islamic democracy by using a session of their parliament to rally support for the summary execution of opposition party leaders.  Video of this amazing spectacle, which comes from Press TV via CNN, is viewable below.  Watch it and imagine this parliament in control of a nuclear arsenal.

As Iranian pro-democracy activists begin a new wave of Facebook and internet-based organizing in opposition to state repression, Iran has found an "off switch" to interrupt such organizing in Egypt during the uprising there.  The now-departed Egyptian regime used their control of the physical and logical means of international communication to shut down the internet (read here).  In the case of Iran, which had already blocked an estimated 5 million websites containing material deemed threatening to the survival of the Islamic Republic, they added a block on all sites containing the term "bahman", the Farsi name for the current month in the Iranian calendar, have slowed broadband speeds to a crawl and interfered with cell phone service. (Read here.)

Now Iranian TV has revealed in the below-embedded news report the shocking news that the internet and Facebook are the products of American imperialist and Zionist conspiracies to monitor and control the world.  The report also reveals that Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg has offered to reward Israelis who kill Palestinians a payment of an unstated quantity of gold coins, presumably what the target audience for the report would believe to be the preferred form of payment for Zionist assassins .  This theater-of-the-absurd disinformation, which features an overdubbed mistranslation of a speech by Israel's Minister of Science Daniel Hershkowitz, is viewable below.

(Source: MEMRI: Iranian TV: Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg Is a Zionist who "Offered a Prize for Israelis who Kill Palestinians"  Hat tip: Harry's Place)

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