Did Ayatollah Khamenei get it right?

AyotollahHe didn’t mince his words. Stop the protests, the result will stand, the ballot box not the street will decide who leads Iran, the scale of electoral fraud alleged is simply not possible, some foreign countries had shown their true colours (singling out Britain) and don’t understand Iran, and that Iran’s human rights record compares favourable with the West. Was this the speech Iran needed at the end of a tumultuous week?

88 Responses to “Did Ayatollah Khamenei get it right?”

  1. 1 Meir Avrahami
    June 19, 2009 at 11:52

    And he blamed in part the Zionists

    We I’m proud to have taken my small part in the struggle for democracy in Iran

    Meir from Israel

    • 2 RightPaddock
      June 19, 2009 at 14:56

      @Meir – did you find a decent translated transcript, I found a Farsi transcript which unfortunately I don’t understand.

  2. June 19, 2009 at 11:57

    This speech gave tacit permission for violence against protesters. It was the speech of a tyrant.

  3. 4 james
    June 19, 2009 at 11:59

    Hi WHY’S,
    I think the Ayatollah did not get it right since the speech sounds more forcefull and confrontational than reconciliatory.I don’t think the hundreds of thousands of Iranians in the street are doing it just for fun! The leadership should humble itself and question why its citizenry is rising up aganist them.

  4. June 19, 2009 at 12:04

    Salaam my dearest Ros… I do believe that some people inside Iran need to get over themselves and take it more easy… The current situation in Iran isn’t the will of an entire population against their government as some are desperately trying to imply, it’s just that a small fraction of the Iranian people (who are apparantly more vocal, highly educated, and better connected to the outside world via the internet and also via their pretty good English) didn’t like the outcome of the elections, so they decided to do something about it, and apparantly they succeeded in giving the impression that they’re the true representatives of the Iranian people, but in fact they aren’t b/c their numbers just do not qualify… So yes guys, take it easy !

    • 6 green mile
      June 22, 2009 at 07:34

      well, Lubna I’m very much disappointed by your comment.it is compeletly vivid that you don’t live in Iran and you information sources are scarce. you need to know that up to now we’ve had ten presidential elections excluding other elections(e.g the parlimentary, expediancy council,..) and this is only the first time we observe such huge protest. well if you were in Iran and had seen the citizens talking about the elections, if you had seen the widespread fraud made by the present president being backed by the leader before the elections started so that they could gather more votes, had you been familiar with the election system and if you knew the officials who were in charge of watching over and counting the votes( the bond servants of the president and the leader and the beneficiaries) you wouldn’t have made such a neglectful comment. i should further add that the number of people you see are much more than you can imagine because: 1) most people are afraid to show up on the streets for the cruelty and savagery of governmental security forces which i dout you have seen, 2) ameture people use their mobile phones to shoot films and they are not equipmed as those in the govermnet . finally i will ask you a question or to to give you food for thought. why do you think the government is sending reporters out of the country and banning any footage from the demonstators? why do you think more than 500 people are detained by the government? why do you think the leader of Iran backed Ahamadinejad and the election results even before the official results were counted? in this election we had 20% rise in the number of participants, whereas the dissatisfaction with the government had risen, where have all these votes goen? it is only a matter of putting 2 and 2 together. looking forward to hearing from you!

  5. 7 Ramesh
    June 19, 2009 at 12:13

    The supporters of the protestors in the west are giving false impression to the world that the protestors are fighting to bring democracy in Iran. If it is true, the protestors should revolt against Ayatollah and not Nejad. That is not happening because the protestors themselves were saying they are not revolting but wanting their votes back. I am not sure whether they respect or are scared of Ayatollah, but they are surely in no mood to show any dissent on Ayatollah. So the only option for them now is just to shut up or turn their swords on ayatollah. It is not difficult to guess what option they may choose – just shut up!.

  6. 8 Balthazar
    June 19, 2009 at 12:30

    Woow! The Supreme Leader – A Superman! 4 hours of Live preaching from Teheran on the BBC, CNN & Co. Even the Vatican Pope doesn’t get this much attention. Is Iran now the center of the World?

  7. 9 Deryck/Trinidad
    June 19, 2009 at 12:43

    At hte beginning he got it right but then he went off.

    I listened and twittered a few points and Khamenei was conciliatory for the most part because he praised all the candidates for their involvement in the revolution and service to the country. Closer to the end though he said the street challenge is not acceptable. Both sides should stop or there will be consequences.

    He basically blamed the enemies of Iran as the instigators of the unrest in Iran while the crowd of men shouted ‘Death to Israel’

  8. 10 Deryck/Trinidad
    June 19, 2009 at 12:45


    Is it possible that a text of the speech be provided?

  9. 12 Donnamarie in Switzerland
    June 19, 2009 at 12:51

    The Iranian election was at best seriously flawed, at worst totally rigged, and no pronouncements by the Ayatollah can change that fact.

    While we in the West are very interested in the situation in Iran, and are commenting on it, it is cowardly of the Ayatollah to attempt to blame the West for the protests. The West is an on-looker, not a participant.

    A substantial proportion, perhaps a majority, of Iranian voters had their votes stolen. Now they have been lied to and treated with contempt. These voters want their votes back, and are unlikely to take kindly to the lies and contempt dished out by the Ayatollah today.

    • 13 RightPaddock
      June 19, 2009 at 15:10

      @Donnamarie writes “The Iranian election was at best seriously flawed”

      What is your evidence, apart from “the BBC says it is so”. Where is the evidence that a “substantial proportion of Iranians had their votes stolen”, apart from the fact that some Iranians are carrying signs to that effect – written in English!

      Is it any wonder that Khamenei would say the Anglosphere (in his words US, Britain and the Zionists) is responsible for the protests. What would the Brits say if protesters in London were carrying placards written in German and/or French!

      • 14 green mile
        June 22, 2009 at 07:50

        i’d love you to refer to my reply given to Lubna. and about the anglospher i just ask you a question: what do irresponsibles do to escape their wrong doings?

  10. 15 Jerry
    June 19, 2009 at 12:53

    What else is new? It’s not like he said anything unexpected. Just more threats. If he really wanted to stay above the fray then he should have spoke sooner and more evenly. Aparently the current president can insult anyone he wants and the supream religious leader won’t call him a sinner. The other question his speech created for me was, did he really mean to say that he also belives that the holocost did not happen?
    I think that political leaders should take more responsibility for for what they say.

  11. 16 dinka Aliap Chawul-Kampala
    June 19, 2009 at 12:54

    Hi Ros.I just return from ma school when Ayatollay started giving out speech which i awatched on Aljazeera Tv then.And what i seen was that Al Khamenei had miss agreater opportunity on his address speech to bring his young people much closer to him so that they resolves this issues amiacably as soon as posible.He should have called for “RERUNS OF ELECTIONS or TALKS TO FORMS A GOVERNMENT OF NATIONAL UNITY” than supporting one candidate(Ahmadinejad)as a victor while criticising previous demonstrations as illegal and warning against government opponents,Supreme leader should be a uniting factor.Mr KHAMENEI HAD FAILED HIS YOUNG IRANIAN PEOPLE.

  12. June 19, 2009 at 13:09

    Salaam Meir… If my house was made of glass, then I shouldn’t be throwing stones at other people’s houses eh?! “the struggle for freedon” is a pretty strong phrase isn’t it Meir ?! Especially when it is used by Israeli citizens… Oh, my heart goes out to the Israeli people whose freedom, dignity. and the right to live like human beings not like animals have all been hijacked by the continued Palestinian occupation, embargo, blockade, and the shameless arrogance of the Palestinian settlers… Meir my friend, now I can see how can a what so called revolution led by a tiny army of bloggers, tweeters, and Facebookers inspire you…

    • 18 Ramesh, India
      June 19, 2009 at 16:24

      Being an educated guy myself, I personally know how much bad, corrupt the politicians in my country are and how flawed our democracy is. Yet, due to the democratic system we have adopted, corrupt politicians do get elected in the parliament with so called majority votes. But wouldn’t I have the right to raise my voice just because I am in a minority of educated people. In my opinion there is nothing wrong in protesting in Iran. But I have strong objections on their lack of clarity on what they really want – just getting missed votes or real democracy.

      • 19 green mile
        June 22, 2009 at 08:05

        to get democracy you must take small steps not just one giant leap ahead when you don’t know where you’ll land! your people as you say have submitted to the election of corrupt politicians. then how come that you find faults with what Iranians are doing? are you familiar with the process of achieving democracy?and one more issue, i’m certain that you haven’t watched the footage from the demonstrations carefully else you would recognized the face of the old , the young,the clerics, the workers, the educated. I think one should think twice before one speaks.

  13. 20 Bob in Queensland
    June 19, 2009 at 13:12

    Ignore the beard and clerical garb (not to mention the length–Ayatollahs don’t do soundbites!) and the content sounds a lot like things that were said in the USA after the dispute about the Florida in the 2004 presidential election.

    Both elections almost certainly involved fraud…but in neither case is there a legal framework to prove it.

  14. June 19, 2009 at 13:16

    It’s unlikely the presidential election results will be reversed just because of protesters who are tacitly against the religious leaders who have the real reign of power.

    Ayatollah Khamenei’s speech will be a boost for President Ahmadinajed. However Ayatollah still has the responsibility to cater for all sections of Iranian society. It seems weird that the Iranians behaving religiously have an easy life with the authorities while those seeking openness and modernity fear harassment and have to lead an open life clandestinely.

  15. 22 A.R.Shams, Pakistan
    June 19, 2009 at 13:17

    I just wonder why Iran needs election. The spiritual leader of Iran would accept the one to lead the nation who seems to him the most suitable. Why should not then Iran adopt just selection?

  16. June 19, 2009 at 13:19

    Karuga the Kenyan

    I think the Ayatollah is veiling his dilemmas by his statement. had he authorized another election the Iran hardliners would have insinuated, he is cowering to the West fueled demonstrations. Now his current stance only makes Iran more uncertain what will happen, is there a silent revolution breeding, will there be more bloodshed. Will dissenters seize the moment and engineer an overthrow. My hope no more deaths occur but is that plausible?

  17. 25 patti in cape coral
    June 19, 2009 at 13:22

    I’m not a fan of George Bush, but when he one the last election (or it was stolen, depending on what you believe), as I recall, in his speech he said (paraphrasing) that he won by a very narrow margin and that his speech was mainly directed at those who did not vote for him, and that he would work very hard to win them over. I thought that was a very good speech and a very good thing to say, even though his actual term was disastrous.

    I think it would have been much more effective for the Ayatollah to be more conciliatory in his speech, to acknowledge a significant part of the population who is not happy with the current regime and address their concerns, but I’m not surprised this is not the tack he took.

    • 26 RightPaddock
      June 19, 2009 at 15:42

      @patti in cape coral – are you saying that you’d rather politicians talk with a “forked tongue” – i.e. someone who would say one thing but does something else.

      Little wonder then that so many outside of the US look with suspicion as it’s model of democracy.

      • 27 patti in cape coral
        June 19, 2009 at 17:31

        It is not that I prefer that politicians speak with a “forked tongue”, they just do whether I want them to or not, no matter what country you are talking about. I just think by his speech, the Ayatollah is probably provoking more opposition and violence, thought I doubt he cares.

        In any case, Mr. Bush talked the talk, but did not walk the walk, that is why he was voted out.

      • 28 green mile
        June 22, 2009 at 08:11

        well at least it would be less painful , and less insulting to the people. however, honesty is the best policy they shouldn’t have abused people’s rights and trust in the first place.

  18. 29 Deryck/Trinidad
    June 19, 2009 at 13:26

    @Donnamarie in Switzerland

    Nothing in this world is black and white just grey that’s why there are many opinions on subjects.

    From my reading of history and looking at the historical facts of Western powers behind the scenes influencing protests and coups in countries thta they have an interest in, it can’t be discounted that the CIA, MI6 or some other covert organization can’t be involved some way.

    I’m staying on the fence, I can’t support Mousavi or Ahmadinejad without some verifiable facts.

  19. 30 gary
    June 19, 2009 at 13:33

    All theocrats interpret the word of God in their own favor. Once in absolute power; why give up? Surely a lttle thing like the will of the people mustn’t stand in the way. Of course, the Ayatollah got it wrong.

  20. 31 Corinna
    June 19, 2009 at 13:51

    Shalom Lubna

    Yes our struggle for freedom is very strong – consider yourself a country the size of Wales surrounded by 22 Muslim Countries. There are 1.8 billion muslims in the world and 20% of them are in the middle east that is 360 million
    against the small state of 6 million. The palestinian people brought it upon themselves to live like animals, imposed embargos, blockades – when you act like animals then dont expect no retaliation. It would be wonderful to see a palestinian revolution happen – saying enough of being used and abused by our own people – we want to live side by side in harmony with the Jewish People,
    They are not our enemies.

  21. 32 Elise
    June 19, 2009 at 14:01

    Totally wrong in fact…

  22. June 19, 2009 at 14:04

    We should continue rejecting the rigged election; Ahmadinejad lacks legitimacy as a president and world should know.

  23. 34 Meir Avrahami
    June 19, 2009 at 14:09

    Sala’am Lubna

    Consider – the Jewish community if Iran issues regular statements of support of Khamenei & Ahmadinejad regime – a sign they are the only enlightened Jewish community in the world or something more sinister?
    Palestinians in Israel express vehement opposition to Israel’s govt – a sign of a repressive regime that keeps then well at heal or perhaps healthy democracy?

    • 35 RightPaddock
      June 19, 2009 at 16:41

      I’m always surprised when I’m reminded that Iran even has a Jewish population. From memory most of them live in Shiraz. I read somewhere that Iran has the largest Jewish population, other than Israel of course, than all the other countries between Morocco & Pakistan.

      There are almost no Jews in countries such as Egypt and Jordan which are supposed to have “friendly” relations with Israel. And along with the Christian population the Jewish population has collapsed in so called “secular” Turkey since the fall of the Ottoman Empire.

      Another – weird eh – situation.

  24. 36 steve
    June 19, 2009 at 14:17

    He should come out and just say “look, Mousavi was on our approved list, meaning everything will remain the same despite who is the President, there is no difference, so stop wasting your time”

  25. 37 Dinka Aliap Chawul,Kampala
    June 19, 2009 at 14:33

    If Obama watch Ayatollah speech today then “what other choice will he thinks about power balance in Iran,politics and it relations with US”?

  26. 38 Peter in Jamaica
    June 19, 2009 at 14:41

    I didn’t hear the speech but heard a bit of it on the news but from what i did get was that;
    Firstly he said that the decision was final and that was it.
    Secondly if they continued to protest then he cannot be held responsible for what happens to them next.
    Thirdly its not the Iranians that are causing the problems but the west for reporting that the elections were a fraud, even though the information came from Iranians in Iran.

    Now i don’t have much of a problem with the fist issue because it happened in the US and did they get a re-vote? No! but but the rallied and protested cause its their right to do so. But with respect to the second if this man is the “Holy man” that he’s suppose to be then he should be trying to protect the people and calming them down. Not telling them to shut up and go home or accept the repercussions from the the police, the army or any other group that doesn’t share their point of view.

    With respect to the Third… now personally to me hes just shifting the blame cause he doesn’t want to have to deal with the matter at hand himself so he says “It’s the Zionist of the west including Israel”. It’s plane to see, to me at least, that this man is just a politician and not a “Holy man of the Iranian people “. He uses the hate that a lot of the people have against Israel to rally behind his decision regardless of what the people may think, say or want just to maintain his control over the people and the power that he now holds in the country.
    so if the question is did he get it right….well only time will tell. If he is still in control after all this then yes he got it right alright cause the people of Iran just played right into his hands lol

  27. 39 Ibrahim in UK
    June 19, 2009 at 14:47

    Sorry but saying that the Palestinians brought the ethnic cleansing and occupation of their land upon themselves is as offensive as saying that the Jews brought the Holocaust upon themselves. There is no victory in self-delusion. Nothing is gained by closing our eyes to truths which we don’t like. Denying historical fact and shirking responsibility only extends the injustice.

    On Khamenei – is there an english transcript of his speech which we can read?

  28. 40 Roy, Washington DC
    June 19, 2009 at 14:48

    @ Deryck

    There is a (supposed) transcript of the speech here:


    It’s from street-level sources, though, so take that as you will.

  29. 41 Gary Paudler
    June 19, 2009 at 14:48

    What else would he say? “Oh, never mind; if you’re upset we’ll just make your guy the president.”? Of course they rigged the election and now they’re suppressing media and beating and killing opposition protestors, but by what peaceful mechanism might Ahmadinejad’s fraudulent election be overturned? Surprise! It’s a repressive regime and Iranian “democracy” consists only of a chance to vote for a nominal figurehead who puts a thin veneer of pseudo-respectability on the Ayatollah’s edicts. It’s disgustingly similar here in the US where the dominant religion is Capitalism and the ayatollahs run Wall Street, the insurance industry, Big Pharma, Big Oil and Big Agriculture and our government is allowed to mess around the edges without affecting fundamental change.


  30. 42 Corinna
    June 19, 2009 at 14:52

    Its amazing how people can be brainwashed and easily led into a spiritual frenzy of madness.
    All this “Death to” – reminds me of the Nazis.

  31. 44 Deryck/Trinidad
    June 19, 2009 at 15:02

    Roy, Washington DC

    Thanks Roy just found it pasteboy a minute ago but it’s edited.

  32. 45 Mohammed, London
    June 19, 2009 at 15:12


    I do believe he got it right, and he gave his reasons succintly. The most important thing he said to me, was that if anyone felt aggrieved they should go to the law courts. You cannot demand for democracy, then turn around and say you won’t accept the legal process just because your candidate did not win.

    At least its Ok that the protests was allowed to go on initially. But I don’t believe that the protests reflect the views of a majority of Iranians.

    As to the targeting of foreign countries for critisicm. I remember during the iraq/iran war the british, french, americans and other european countries where actively supplying Saddam Hussein with weapons to terrorise Iranian’s and kurdish.

    The Americans and Europeans also, supported the Shah to oppress his own people. So its going to take a long while before trust is re-established.

    I wish the people of Iran the best.

    • 46 Andrew
      June 19, 2009 at 17:59


      “I do believe he got it right, and he gave his reasons succintly. The most important thing he said to me, was that if anyone felt aggrieved they should go to the law courts. You cannot demand for democracy, then turn around and say you won’t accept the legal process just because your candidate did not win. ”

      The most important thing he said, to me, was that the election was fair and valid, DESPITE the fact that the Guardian Council have yet to perform a recount or answer the 646 separate charges, brought by all 3 opponents of Admadinejad. Bear in mind that the GC answer to Khamenei, and that he is the ‘Supreme Leader’. Therefore, the only conclusion you can draw is that the GC are absolutely not going to do any further investigation, and that no evidence will even be considered. The alternative, to risk evidence being uncovered of fraud (truth be told, there already seems to be some which is surely enough reason to hold a re-run), would be to ultimately question the Supreme Leader. I can’t see him backing down and admitting he’s made a mistake – he even endorsed Admadinejad as the man ‘closest to him in views’. Well, strangely enough, the point of a democracy is that it is not the views of one man that count.

      Regarding the Americans and the Europeans…it’s old news. Name me one ruling party or regime, anywhere in the world, that doesn’t interfere (or try to interfere) with others. The Iranians had a popular uprising in 1979, which was hi-jacked by the mullahs. It was rather ironic, in light of that display of people power, for Khamenei to imply that people power would not rule the day here (presumably because he would be prepared to slaughter thousands of his own countrymen, or at best, to stand by while the Basij and the military do their worst). Last time I checked, this was supposed to be a deeply spiritual man – today has exposed him as a hatred-filled demagogue seemingly out of touch with reality.

  33. 47 Deryck/Trinidad
    June 19, 2009 at 15:17

    @ Corinna

    Everybody’s brainwashed including me, but most of us don’t know it.

    • 48 Corinna
      June 19, 2009 at 15:34

      Yes I agree but I have always hated crowd hysteria – people forget their humanity in these circumstances.

  34. 49 RightPaddock
    June 19, 2009 at 15:30

    I wonder how many people would have been killed if protests of 1-2 million people were held for 6 consecutive days in London.

    Rather more than 8 I suspect, given the appalling recent record of the British Police.

    Any expectation that Khamenei would have not supported the official results is ridiculous, to have done otherwise would have been to kow-tow mob rule.

    National leaders, be they a President, a Monarch or a Supreme Leader don’t often sanction a coup against their own government – except perhaps in Thailand.

  35. 50 Deryck/Trinidad
    June 19, 2009 at 15:43

    @ Corinna

    Think of this all these people on twitter, facebook etc are also showing crowd hysteria (but they are not coalesced into a mob on the street) for what they believe is ‘RIGHT’.

    Therein lies our problem what is ‘RIGHT’?

  36. 51 Tom K in Mpls
    June 19, 2009 at 15:47

    He had one thing right, order must be maintained. Stability is important. Now what about change from within? When fundamentalists are involved, I kinda doubt it.

  37. 52 Archibald
    June 19, 2009 at 15:57

    This nothing new from Iran. Though, I will say that claiming a comparable human rights record to the west is preposterous. Religious zealotry based in contradictions (all dependent on the current goal), politicians trying to sell something to the general public then resorting to extremist tactics to “close” the deal. Sounds like every gov’t I can think of………
    Fear is a powerful control………

  38. 53 RightPaddock
    June 19, 2009 at 15:58

    When Ahmadinejad wins an election in Iran with 57% support (67% of an 85% turnout) the BBC and many others say the election was flawed/rigged/fraudulent.

    Yet when Blair won an election in Britain with a mere 23% support (35% of 61% turnout) no one said a word.

    Looks like some sort of double standard, sounds like some sort of double standard, smells like some sort of double standard – must be a double standard.

  39. June 19, 2009 at 16:06

    Salaam again… I do really hate to get off the subject of our reaction to the speech of Al Sayed but I really have to respond to this : Corrina, I guess that Ibrahim in the UK replied to your logic well, and let me add that your logic is as flawed as saying that Iraqi college students who have been murdered by the terrorists have brought this upon themselves b/c they chose to go to their colleges and not to stick at home, while it’s the terrorists whom we should be blaming and cursing, not their victims. And the same thing goes for what’s happening in the Holy Lands, it’s the OCCUPIERS (not according to me but according to the international law and the UN resolutions and even according to the new American administration) whom we should be blaming and cursing, not the people who have been occupied and driven out of their homes… I have no problem what so ever with Jews Meir and Corrina, I just hate OCCUPIERS with passion, so to me Israelis are occupiers who happen to be Jews, it’s as simple as that…

    • 55 Ramesh, India
      June 19, 2009 at 17:02

      I just wonder whether you would have had the same freedom(to speak freely as you do here), had Saddam Hussein is alive. In my opinion, it the americans who should curse their administration for going to Iraq, not the Iraqis who have been liberated from Saddam but failed to capitalize on it.

  40. June 19, 2009 at 16:14

    Hi WHYS,

    The answer is simple and straight: Yes he did. Iran belongs to Iran and they should run it the way they deem fit.
    But it’s a little disconcerting that someone who purports to have moral and spiritual authority {besides the immense political power he wields} over the Iranian society should fail to notice that there may be something amiss however small or minute.{ I still believe the protesters comprise a small percentage of Iranian view on the elections}

  41. 57 Mohammed, London
    June 19, 2009 at 16:26

    It baffles me how individuals are saying the election was flawed,fraudulent etc. Please can I see hard evidence. Considering the number of people that voted and turnout I doubt it. Assuming supporters of Ahmedinajad went out to protest in such manner what would have happened. Why can’t the opposition provide proof to the legal authorities and the international communities that there was widespread malpractice as claimed.

    Democraty processes do not all have to have the same colour everywhere in the world as long as basic tenets are maintained, respect for human rights, right to freedom of speech etc. Ayatollah has asked a few questions could we get some answers please:

    1. If the gap between the contestants was upto 11million votes. On what basis should the whole election be cancelled?
    2. Provide evidence, in this day and age with video camera’s, mobile phone cameras could anyone provide evidence of the purported fraud?

    Please I am waiting for answers.

    • 58 Andrew
      June 19, 2009 at 18:07

      Given the number of people who voted, why do you think there are protests??

      To answer your questions:

      1. The gap itself is more than double the number of votes Admadinejad posted last time. It is widely believed that the massive turnout was a direct reflection of people’s desire for change and to engage Mousavi. When Admadinejad won last time around, in an election that was not without its doubters then, only 34m voted. It was believed that those who didn’t engage tended to be reformists, disillusioned with Rafsanjani or unwilling to take part in a vote that would give perceived credence to the winner, irrespective of who that was.
      2. What form do you think this evidence would take, exactly? Given that the Interior Ministry performed the count, and given that Mousavi’s election monitors were denied access, who would even have incriminating photos/videos? Any that were published would presumably be dismissed as fake or staged.

      There is no direct evidence – it is all based on circumstancial evidence, but there is still a convincing case to be made. In fact, the most reasonable arguments I’ve seen suggest that Admadinejad might actually have won the first round vote, but that he was unlikely to have won enough to avoid a run-off.

  42. 59 RightPaddock
    June 19, 2009 at 16:48

    @ Mohammed, London – me too mate.

    I think there’s more to this than meets the eye – see my latest post in the “Who do you believe … ” WHYS blog.

  43. 60 Emily in Colorado
    June 19, 2009 at 16:53

    While democracy should be decided in the polls, the only way for a people to accept the vote gracefully is if the government running it is controlled by checks and balances. In Iran, the checks and balances needed are just not in place, and the people are aptly responding…

    • 61 RightPaddock
      June 19, 2009 at 17:23

      @Emily – have you ever been to and more importantly have you ever lived in Iran

      Re checks and balances – do you mean like those we saw in the USA in 2000.

      The President of Iran has plenty checks and balances that constrain his/her power, more perhaps than the US president, think back to Khatami’s presidency, where he was repeatedly frustrated by the Majlis (Congress), who were in turn frustrated by the Council of Guardians or the Supreme Leader, who hold office only as the gift of the Expediency Council.

      Iran does not suffer a lack of checks & balances, indeed it suffers from a superfluity of checks & balances.

      • 62 Emily in Colorado
        June 19, 2009 at 19:18

        While recalling Bushs un legitimate presidency win is a good reminder, I do not agree that it resembles the turmoil in Iran.
        Whether Bush should have won all the states (esp Florida) is debatable, thats not what we are focusing on today. And, thank goodness, he is finally out of office.

        I do agree with your point on the fact that perhaps Iran suffers from too many checks and balances.
        Following that though, I beleive the U.S. does have a very strong setup of checks and balances, but that Bush unethically bypassed them and cut corners by finding loopholes in our Constitution. But a majority of the U.S. turned a blind eye to it in the beginning, because majority had voted for him originally [compared to the seemingly minority in Iran].

  44. 63 steve/oregon
    June 19, 2009 at 17:02

    I don’t know if the Iranian elections were rigged or not as i am not there and have no proof either way…. from what i have seen on you tube and around the blogisphere I do not believe the Iranian gov is handling this issue the best possible way. The supreme leader like said before should be a uniter of his people. If he did not want to sponsor a new election that is up to him his aggressive tone did not help the situation in my opinion. That being said there has to be something said for the government not trying to stop all media going out of the country. This screams we have something to hide which is why alot of us believe the vote was rigged had they had the election and tons of protesters came out against the winner and the government said to the world…..

    Come report on how grand our democracy is we had an 85% turn out. Our people are not happy but they have the freedom to protest and raise there concerns. We will look into there concerns and resolve this issue.

    If this stance had been adopted there would be alot better vision of the iranian governement in the worlds eyes. Instead the gov has chosen to adopt a dictorial stance…… IE we must not let the world see us having problems controling our populace this could make us look bad, when actually that stance is making them look much worse.

    The fact he blamed the west for the problems in his government. Is well childish instead of saying why are my people upset and how can i unite the country. He said its all there fault not mine
    Mr supreme leader he who points the finger has 4 more pointing back at him.

  45. 64 Jim (USA)
    June 19, 2009 at 17:07

    There is only one way forward for the protestors that will continue pressure on the iranian regime and avoid bloodshed. If any of you who read this know anyone involved in orgainizing the protest movement in iran please pass this on. Give them what they ask for. Leave the streets. Do not confront the authorities. Buy several weeks of food, go back to your houses and stay there. Do not go to work, do not shop, do not buy gasoline for your car. If a majority of the iranian people do not support Ahmedinejad then a general strike will be successful. If the iranian authorities are correct and the majority of the people do support ahmedinejad than a general strike will have little effect and truth will be served. A general strike is the ONLY way forward that will not cause bloodshed. Nobody wants to see blood in the streets of iran.

    • 65 patti in cape coral
      June 19, 2009 at 17:57

      I like this idea, I hope it catches on. It would be wonderful if violence could be avoided.

  46. 66 RightPaddock
    June 19, 2009 at 17:12

    I just heard Brown banging on about violence reaction and political prisoners – what about the repeated instances of violence committed by the British Police and his own political prisoners – why doesn’t he get his own house in order.

    • 67 Andrew
      June 19, 2009 at 18:12

      When was the last time that a British policeman fired on a group of protestors?

      And where/who exactly are our political prisoners?

      Not really the point though is it. 8 people dead, well over 100 imprisoned. And a whole nation cut off somewhat from the rest of the world through stringent media controls. Hardly the UK is it?

  47. 68 Shannon in Ohio
    June 19, 2009 at 17:41

    Khamenei’s remarks make it glaringly obvious that he knows nothing about the Iranian people he tearfully claimed in his speech to love with all his heart. Stopping the protests now is akin to putting toothpaste back in the tube. I fear for the protesters–more violent clashes seem sadly inevitable now…and I applaud their courage. My heart goes out the Iranian people.

    • 69 Emily in Colorado
      June 19, 2009 at 19:00

      I agree somewhat with this point. While the physical protestsin the streets might me stopped thourgh military might etc, the protest’ing’ will continue, as well as the anger and unrest of the Iran people who disagree with the election/

  48. 70 Roseann In Houston
    June 19, 2009 at 18:17

    I believe that nothing useful is achieved by me expressing an opinion on this – please let me explain. I believe that the US presidential election in 2000 was fraudulent, and that the “legal process” that was followed in response to allegationsof vote stealing was a sham that served only to placate American citizens long enough for the strong emotions to die down. I believe that Bush, knowing that he had illegally assumed the position of President of the US, then felt empowered to continue breaking laws and he declared an illegal war in Iraq. I believe that the experience of 8 years of illegal rule, including intimidation and prosecution of American citizens that opposed the illegal rule, ultimately resulted in record turnouts of previously under-represented populations and the election of a President who immediately began to reverse actions by Bush.

    Having said all of that, I would have been very angry if a foreign government or individuals would have tried to intervene in my country and worked to influence US politics to depose Bush. I will pay the Iranians the same respect – let them sort out their country. If we keep our fingers out of it, I believe that the next election will bring change.

    • 71 Emily in Colorado
      June 19, 2009 at 19:10

      While I was against the entire Bush presidency and I was also against the war in Iraq, I do want to caution you as to the strong way you are explaining Bushs’ use of power. As a democrat, I am simply referring to your strong remarks.

      Also, Bush did not ‘steal’ votes, specifically in Florida, but there were serious problems in how they were counted.

      To your credit, I do agree with your points that how Bush organized himself in Congress etc, surronding himself with people that would agree with him and the laws he wanted to pass, was wrong.

      The war in Iraq was not illegal persay, but Bush did skip laws and bypass Cogress in order to follow through with the invasion.

      As you also refer to the intimidation and prosecution of American citizens, and I ask you to give the details of that.
      Reading this, I was recalling the Red Scare etc of communism in the U.S. and I dont think that these can compare.

      • 72 Roseann In Houston
        June 19, 2009 at 22:14

        Emily – you totally missed my point. I started each statement with “I believe” – I wanted to make it clear that I really hated that man and was ashamed of his presidency BUT that I would have fought and resented any outside interference. My point – we need to stay out of Iran’s business.

  49. 73 Tom D Ford
    June 19, 2009 at 18:23

    “… Stop the protests, the result will stand, the ballot box not the street will decide who leads Iran, …”

    Oh for goodness sakes, those hypocritical Ayatollahs got into power through violent revolution themselves, are they now willing to resign because of the way they got their power? I don’t think so!

  50. 74 Mark
    June 19, 2009 at 18:41

    To me, an observer, it kind of sounded like “……let them eat cake……”

  51. 75 Jim Newman
    June 19, 2009 at 18:58

    Hello again
    I watched the speech on Aljazeera and followed the interpretation in English. Yes I think the Ayatolla got it right, or at least as right as it was possible to get in the circumstances.
    His main message was to the Iranians to assure them that Iran was not about to break up in chaos. That Iran is a state where the rule of law is for everybody and, refering to the elections, if anybody wants to lodge a complaint and they bring enough evidence a thorough investigation will be made. He said that mistakes may have been made but there was no question of cheating.
    The street protests must stop and legal paths must be taken.
    He blamed a lot of the trouble on Western and zionist propaganda which I believe is quite reasonable.
    I didn’t get the impression that the large jewish population in Iran were in any danger.
    In general it was a speech of a brave leader who is alarmed at the turn of events and wants to ‘ put the church back in the middle of the village’ as the French say when order must be restored.
    Apart from that I think the comments of Meir and Corrina are in extremely bad taste and they should be ashamed of themselves.

  52. 76 Mohammed
    June 19, 2009 at 19:14

    In my view, I still feel let the oppostion go to the courts with the evidence and challenge the results their, mind you does the invalidity of a few votes compared to the total votes cast invalidate an election ? I don’t think so.

    If we want to even use western examples, we always have the Al Gore/Bush florida example to use, or I can even go back to my textbooks and find other examples.

    I listened to the translation on BBC, and there was no where were Ayatollah said that or implied that the protestors can go to hell.

    The translation was so clear and his intent was but across without any ambiguity. The main things I took away from it as I said before is that.

    1. Anyone who feels aggrieved with the results should go to the law courts. Are we now saying that we do not accept this proposition/suggestion to follow the rule of law just because its coming from Ayatollah.

    2. Why is it that when things do not go the way the western countries feel it should be, then everything is been condemned as unacceptable. Well its acceptable to more than the majority of Iranians.

    3. I have still not seen any evidence of either vote rigging, fraud etc, so I am still waiting. Even on CSI Miama there is always evidence left on a crime area, and the prosecutor has to provide overwhelming empirical evidence to buttress accusations, and not based on emotions or verbal accusations.

    • 77 Emily in Colorado
      June 19, 2009 at 19:36

      CSI Miami is not a legitimate show based on how the system really works in the court of law or even in the lab.
      And if people are unhappy, they have a right to stand up and peacefully protest as long and as much as they want, at least..they do in Miami.

    June 19, 2009 at 19:20

    Oh! Today is a different day in Iran. The Ayatollah is a leader of the revolution and a theocratic state.

    In my thinking, he chose to address himself in the confine of religius democracy and that is why he chose to level his anger at the theocratic states of Israel and Britain. In the same breath, he was reminding the opposition that the revolution regime is still in charge and that it is not yet their time to meddle. They will be crushed.

    He did not wag the ‘Great Satan’ which might mean that he may be thinking about engaging for peace.

    How about the youths and the women? He thinks these are unregistered political parties in Iran which have not been registered; hence they have no mandate or ligitimacy.

    Sometimes I agree with him even if it is not at all the times. Democracy is really a very muddy game these days.

  54. June 19, 2009 at 19:20

    With all the protesting going on, you would think it would be in the interest of the ruling religious council to recount everything and prove to the people the actual outcome. This would boost the peoples view of them and help maintain there control of the country. As it is they are just jumping in the pool of mistrust that the the current president has created for the ruling party. It may come back to haunt them in the future and few still will trust the dishonest leaders.

  55. 80 SSONKO George Wilson
    June 19, 2009 at 19:24

    Hi Ros,

    If the theocracy in Iran chose to block the Western or other media houses, did they expect to succeed? For the Ayatollah who is not democratically elected to moralise fraud is not surprising. When the winds of change start blowing, there is little you can do. If the theocracy knew the Tianmen square history, they would act before it gets too late.

  56. 81 David
    June 19, 2009 at 20:21

    I totally agree with Lubna.

    And I ask: Who do you think is worse, two people fighting or one person inciting fight, fight, fight? The world should understand that every country on earth needs stability and peace. The world should understand there will never be a time when we all will be sartisfied.

    Can’t we leave Iran to govern its country without interference?

  57. 82 George
    June 19, 2009 at 20:50

    To earn trust, the media must not ignore the obvious, for example, the hyprocrisy of those that don’t want others to get what they already have, or those that suspect but without evidence others are not adhering to agreements they themselves are violating. When the press sides with such hypocrisy, their motive is not likely to be devotion to truth, but rather obedience to a prescribed policy line that no one needs to state because everyone knows it by heart. The US mainstream and sometimes the BBC are like this enough of the time to raise doubts about the veracity of their Iran coverage . The Iran election would become the pretext for delivering anti-Iranian rhetoric. In this kind of a situation, I rely on my knowledge of the past. Maybe this is the events of 1968 in France all over again: young people venting. Maybe Ahmadinejad did win. Maybe I sitting here thousands of miles away must nurture my scepticism for a while and distrust those with the anti-Iranian animosities that mark all their previous reports.

  58. 83 Corinna
    June 19, 2009 at 23:53

    Shalom again Lubna – I also have a problem with Occupiers – but the Jews are no occupiers. Israel became a state in 1312 B.C., two millennia before “Islam” existed. Arab refugees from Israel began calling themselves “Palestinians” in 1967, two decades after (modern) Israeli statehood.After conquering the land in 1272 B.C., Jews ruled it for a thousand years and maintained a continuous
    presence there for 3,300 years.The only Arab rule following conquest in 633 A.D. lasted just 22 years. For over 3,300 years, Jerusalem was the Jewish capital. It was never the capital of any Arab or Muslim entity. Even under Jordanian rule, (east) Jerusalem was not made the capital, and no Arab leader came to visit it.Jerusalem is mentioned over 700 times in the Bible, but not once is it mentioned in the Qur’an.. King David founded Jerusalem; Mohammed never set foot in it !. Jews pray facing Jerusalem; Muslims face Mecca. If they are between the two cities, Muslims pray facing Mecca, with their backs to Jerusalem.
    In 1948, Arab leaders urged their people to leave, promising to cleanse the land of Jewish presence. 68% of them fled without ever setting eyes on an Israeli soldier.
    Virtually the entire Jewish population of Muslim countries had to flee as the result of violence and pogroms.
    Some 630,000 Arabs left Israel in 1948, while close to a million Jews were forced to leave the Muslim countries.
    In spite of the vast territories at their disposal, Arab refugees were deliberately prevented from assimilating into their host countries. Out of 100 million refugees following World War II, they are the only group to have never integrated with their coreligionists. Most of the Jewish refugees from Europe and Arab lands
    were settled in Israel, a country no larger than New Jersey.
    There are 22 Muslim countries, ( not counting Palestine ). There is only one Jewish state. Arabs started all five wars against Israel, and lost every one of them.
    Fatah and Hamas constitutions still call for the destruction of Israel. Israel ceded most of the West Bank and all of Gaza to the Palestinian Authority, and even provided it with arms.
    During the Jordanian occupation, Jewish holy sites were vandalized and were off limits to Jews.
    Under Israeli rule, all Muslim and Christian holy sites are accessible to all faiths.
    Out of 175 United Nations Security Council Resolutions up to 1990, 97 were against Israel; out of 690 General Assembly Resolutions, 429 were against Israel.
    The United Nations was silent when the Jordanians destroyed 58 synagogues in the old city of Jerusalem. It remained silent while Jordan systematically desecrated the ancient Jewish cemetery on the Mount of Olives, and it remained silent when Jordan enforced apartheid laws preventing Jews from accessing the
    Temple Mount and Western Wall.

  59. 84 tanboontee
    June 20, 2009 at 04:06

    Who has the right to judge if Khamenei gets it right? Why impose a rule on anyone who speaks for his nation?

    What Iran needs is not for outsiders to say? The Iranians would speak for themselves.

    Please do not act cute by poking NOSES too often into others’ affairs, lest getting hurt unnecessarily eventually.

    • 85 John in Germany
      June 22, 2009 at 08:37

      Once again America and the UK have been purged and devilled by a leader that is prepared to use violence against his own people in this modern day and age. I repeat his own people. One must expect a divine leader to be above violence. You do not have to destroy life to maintain a democracy.

      To date 3 million votes have been found to be fraudulent, how long is it needed to find the other eight?.

      Of course every person on this planet has the right to judge, that is the freedom that was given to us all at birth, no matter what religion, or no religion at all. Freedom has only ever been taken by leaders. World History is the proof, Sheep will contently graze, and live happily until the Shepherd Walks in front (leads) , or drives from behind(forces), the method varies from country to country. The result is the same, but one method is more peaceful than the other.

      Do some research on Poke Your Nose.

      Greetings from a peaceful Europe
      John in Germany

  60. 86 ramesh bhambhra
    June 20, 2009 at 23:59

    I believe IF indeed this election was genuine and IF the world media is merely fostering instability in a sovereign government THEN with the purported majority in the just concluded elections — Ahmedinijad has nothing to fear and should order re-elections.
    IF he wins again (which if he truly won the first time will probably lead to a greater margin this time around) the UN should reimburse the cost of the re-elections. Also, if he does win again then he would have proven it to the world that the western media is indeed biased against his country!!
    So how confident are you Mr. Ahmedinijad?

  61. 87 T
    June 22, 2009 at 03:58

    While I’m sorry this is happening in Iran, the irony is amazing.

    In the States, the previous two Presidential elections were stolen. People protested, and this was censored. And still the same suspect voting machines were used repeatedly. And still are today.

    If another country pushed us on our election results, we’d say go away. What then gives us the right to interfere in every other country’s elections? What’s Obama going to do? Cut diplomatic relations? There are none. Attack Iran? Can’t do that (with two other wars to fight).

    Congressional resolutions condemning the government are meaningless. All that will be done is just watch and see.

  62. 88 John in Germany
    June 22, 2009 at 16:20

    Utopia- A land where the religions do not interfere with politics, and politics leave religion alone.

    John in Germany

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