Tag Archives: Radio Free Europe

Can You Fool The People Any Of The Time?

Golnaz Esfandiari at Radio Free Europe:

Iranian state television has made a documentary about the death of Neda Agha Soltan, a young Iranian woman who was shot dead during the June postelection protests in Tehran, suggesting she was an agent of the United States and Britain who staged her own death.

Neda’s last moments were filmed on a cell phone and watched by millions of people around the world, becoming a symbol of democratic resistance to the regime.

The state-television documentary suggests the video of Neda’s dying moments merely depicted her pouring blood on her own face from a special bottle she was carrying. Later, the documentary alleges that 27-year-old Neda was shot dead in the car that was taking her to a hospital.

The conspiracy theory alleged in the documentary is in line with comments by Iranian officials, who have repeatedly described Neda’s death as “suspicious” and a “premeditated scenario” to defame Iran.

The state reaction was prompted by the immense impact of a grainy amateur video shot as Neda participated in a June 20 protest in Tehran.

Scott Lucas at Enduring America:

A new documentary for Iranian television, summarised in a Press TV video, made Neda both a participant and then the sacrifice of the evil scheme: she allegedly threw imitation blood onto her face as part of a faked shoot to discredit the security forces, but she was later slain by the two men who claim to have saved her live: her music teacher and Dr Arash Hejazi.

Hejazi has responded in an interview that this is a “shameless and worthless” attempt to shift blame from security forces by a regime which “has been doing everything it can to distance itself from Neda’s death and throw responsibility on others”.

Joe Gandelman at Moderate Voice:

The only thing missing from this report — how did they leave the charge out? — is that she was really shot dead in a car by Israeli agents.

Just wait: that’ll be claimed soon, too.

(You heard it here first).

Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estés of TMV, was one of the first to write about Neda’s murder. See here…

Claims that Neda’s death was faked are as credible as a claim that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad belongs to a synagogue in Boca Raton and owns a bagel factory in Queens.

Joshua Keating at Foreign Policy

Michael C. Moynihan at Reason

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I’m Goin’ Down To South Park, Gonna Have Myself A Time

The Russians planned to speak with some American dissidents while here. Bloggers had suggestions…

Andy Heil at Radio Free Europe:

Noam Chomsky — iconic linguist, lecturer, and voice of the left for decades

For: instant cachet among the beard-stroking intellectual elite of any nation
Against: makes Marx look like a reactionary; kind of stingy with his Facebook friendships

Rush Limbaugh — combative radio talk show host of the right

For: millions of fawning American listeners every day
Against: you can’t get a word in edgewise

Michael Moore — documentary filmmaker whose enormous success at Cannes earned him powerful enemies in the U.S.

For: revered in many circles
Against: reviled in nearly all the others

Kanye West — rapper and record producer

For: influential with the young set; feuding with current U.S. president
Against: tends to go off-message

Sarah Palin — former vice presidential candidate and Alaska governor

For: close neighbor of Russia’s; got on great with Pakistan’s president; sees America on the verge of slipping into terminal communism
Against: see McCain/Palin ’08; sees America on the verge of slipping into terminal communism

Reverend Jeremiah Wright — former pastor of the Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago who famously inveighed “God damn America!” from the pulpit

For: friends in high places
Against: out of step with said friends

Gus Hall — American Communist Party leader who stuck with it through years of persecution and the Soviet collapse

For: though now dead, Hall, too, regarded Mikhail Gorbachev and Boris Yeltsin as “a wrecking crew
Against: symbolic visits to monuments to dead Communists are no longer the preferred Russian photo op

Sean Penn — Oscar-winning actor/director and political activist

For: lots of showbiz friends and a cozy relationship with the Huffington Post
Against: less disgruntled since January

Christopher Hitchens — former flame-breathing Trotskyite turned neocon booster

For: dual nationality lends him trans-Atlantic heft
Against: hard to tell whose side he’s on; interventionist bent and outspoken atheism could backfire on the Russian leader; he laid waste to Mother Teresa, for goodness sake

Eric Cartman — vitriolic “South Park” fourth-grader

For: global recognition and an enemy of political correctness
Against: has variously advocated or committed tyranny, piracy, genocide, pedophilia, murder, misogyny, blackmail, hate crimes, rape, and terrorism

Daniel Drezner at Foreign Policy:

This is an excellent start, but I think we can add a few names to the old dissident list.  Let me think…. who else is railing against the System these days?

  1. Glenn Beck
  2. U.S. Representative Ron Paul
  3. Glenn Greenwald
  4. Dick Cheney
  5. Serena Williams
  6. U.S. Representative Dennis Kucinich
  7. Jimmy Carter
  8. U.S. Representative Joe Wilson
  9. Terrell Owens
  10. Beyonce (OK, technically, she’s not railing against the system — but as much of a jackass as he might have been, Kanye was right:  this is the most awesome video ever.  She was robbed, and I blame The Man).

I’m just trying to imagine Medvedev meeting this crew.

From the comments, baribog:

Proposed amendments to the list:

The “New Black Panther Party”
The Nation of Islam
Immortal Technique
Zack de la Rocha
Mumia Abu Jamal
Leonard Pelletier
Carlos Santana

and last but not least…

Tommy Chong.

I would love to see a meeting between Chong and Ahmadinejad. Who would have known that weed mixed with shisha can taste so good?

Freddy Gray at TAC:

Clearly the Russian President wants to spite Obama for meeting with opposition leaders when he visited Russia. But the GOP doesn’t exactly qualify as “dissident” — at least not as far as the Russians are concerned. Who then? Drezner and Heil have both put forward their comedy top-ten anti-establishmentarians. Let’s have your suggestions…

And in the comments, Matt Swartz:

Besides those named, I think he’d be well-served to talk to:
James Traficant
Andrew Bacevich
Amy Goodman (from Democracy Now!)
Phyllis Schlafly (who is still alive)
Gore Vidal
John Mackey (whole foods CEO)

Flopping Aces

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