Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
December 31, 2017

Iran - Early U.S. Support For Rioters Hints At A Larger Plan

In Iran - Regime Change Agents Hijack Economic Protests we looked at the developing U.S.-Israeli operation to instigate a revolt in Iran. What follows are a few more background points and a view on the developments since. A color revolution or revolt in Iran have only little chances of success. But even as the fail they can be used as pretext for additional sanctions and other anti-Iranian measures. The current incidents are thus only one part of a much larger plan.

The "western" democracies are used to distinguish political parties as left or right with fixed combinations of economic and cultural policies. The "left" is seen as preferring a social economy that benefits the larger population and as cultural liberal or progressive. The right is seen as cultural conservative with a preference for a free market economy that favors the richer segments of a nation.

The political camps in Iran are different.

The simplified version: The conservatives, or "principalists", are cultural conservative but favor economic programs that benefit the poor. Their support base are the rural people as well as the poorer segments of the city dwellers. The last Iranian president near to them was Mahmoud Ahmedinejad. One of his major policies was the implementation of cash payments to the needy as replacement of general and expensive subsidies on oil products and foodstuff. The current Iranian president Hassan Rouhani is a member of the "reformist" camp. His support base are the merchants and the richer parts of the society. He is culturally (relative) progressive but his economic polices are neoliberal. The new budget he introduced for the next year cuts back on the subsidies for the poor Ahmedinejad had introduced. It will increase prices for fuel and basic food stuff up to 30-40%.

The protests on December 28 and 29 were about these and other economic issues. Such protests have regularly occurred in Iran throughout the decades. But the current ones were soon hijacked by small groups which chanted slogans against the Iranian system and against the strong Iranian engagement in Syria and Palestine. These are not majority positions of the 80 million inhabitants of Iran:

According to the poll, 67.9% say Iran should increase backing for anti-IS groups, up from 59.8% a year ago. Meanwhile, a majority of 64.9% backs the deployment of Iranian military personnel to Syria to help the regime of Bashar al-Assad, up slightly from 62.7% a year ago.

The small groups that hijacked the protests against Rouhani's economic polices were heavily promoted by the usual suspects of U.S. influence operations. Avaaz, the RAND cooperation, Human Rights Watch and others immediately jumped onto the bandwagon. (True to form HRW's Ken Roth used a picture of a pro-government rally to illustrate the much smaller anti-government protests.) The smaller groups that hijacked and publicized the demonstration seem well coordinated. But they are far from a genuine movement or even a majority.

On the morning of December 30 large demonstrations in support of the Iranian republic were taking place in several cities. In Tehran several thousand people took part.


The self described "Iran junkie" of the Brookings Center for Middle East Policy, Suzanne Maloney, interpreted these as counter-demonstrations to the small gatherings the night before:

Suzanne Maloney‏ @MaloneySuzanne - 12:40 PM - 30 Dec 2017

The Islamic Republic has a well-oiled machine for mobilizing pro-regime rallies (Rouhani himself headlined one in 1999 after student protests.) What's interesting is that it was deployed almost immediately this time.

The "Iran junkie" and "expert" did not know that yearly pro-government demonstrations are held in Iran on each 9th of Dey (Iranian calender) since 2009 and are planned well in advance. They commemorate the defeat of the CIA color revolution attempt in 2009. That attempt had followed the reelection of the president Ahmedinejad. It had used the richer segment of the Iranian society in north Tehran as its stooges. It is not yet clear what social strata, if any, this attempt is using.

In June 2009 Brookings Institute published a manual on how to overthrow the Iranian government or to take control of the country. "Iran junkie" Maloney was one of the authors. WHICH PATH TO PERSIA? - Options for a New American Strategy toward Iran (pdf) came in four parts:

  • Part I - Dissuading Tehran: The Diplomatic options.
  • Part II - Disarming Tehran: The Military options
  • Part III - Toppling Tehran: Regime Change
  • Part IV - Deterring Tehran: Containment

Part III includes:

  • Chapter 6: The Velvet revolution: supporting a Popular Uprising
  • Chapter 7: Inspiring an insurgency: supporting Iranian Minority and opposition Groups
  • Chapter 8: The coup: supporting a Military Move against the regime

The velvet "color revolution" failed in 2009 when the "green movement" could not convince the Iranian people that it was more than a foreign supported attempt to overthrow their republic.

What we currently see in Iran is a combination of chapter 6 and 7 of the Brookings plan. Behind a somewhat popular movement that protests against the neo-liberal economic policies of the Rohani government a militant movement, as seen last night (below), is implementing an escalation strategy that could lead to a civil war. We have already seen a similar combination in Libya and at the beginning of the attack on Syria. (Tony Cartalucci at the Land Destroyer Report has written extensively on the Brookings paper as a "handbook for overthrowing nations".)

Last June the Wall Street Journal reported that the CIA had set up a special operation cell for such attacks on Iran:

The Central Intelligence Agency has established an organization focused exclusively on gathering and analyzing intelligence about Iran, reflecting the Trump administration’s decision to make that country a higher priority target for American spies, according to U.S. officials.

The Iran Mission Center will bring together analysts, operations personnel and specialists from across the CIA to bring to bear the range of the agency’s capabilities, including covert action.

Head of the new office is one of the most ruthless CIA officers:

To lead the new group, Mr. Pompeo picked a veteran intelligence officer, Michael D’Andrea, who recently oversaw the agency’s program of lethal drone strikes and has been credited by many of his peers for successes against al Qaeda in the U.S.’s long campaign against the terrorist group.
Mr. D’Andrea, a former director of the CIA’s Counterterrorism Center, is known among peers as a demanding but effective manager, and a convert to Islam who works long hours. Some U.S. officials have expressed concern over what they perceive as his aggressive stance toward Iran.

D'Andrea is the CIA guy who "dropped the ball" when he could have prevented 9/11. He was intimately involved in the CIA's torture program and drone murder campaign in Pakistan and Afghanistan. He is suspected to be the brain behind the U.S. cooperation with extremist Wahhabis in Libya, Iraq and Syria.

Yesterday morning a Sunni terror group blew up a pipeline in south-west Iran near the Iraqi border:

Ansar al Furqan states that “a major oil pipeline was blown up in Omidiyeh region of occupied Ahvaz, Iran.” The group added that it had established a new unit, the Ahwaz Martyrs Brigade. The area of Ahvaz has historically had a large Arab population. However, it is unclear if this purported brigade is comprised of Iranian Arabs or Baluchis, as most of its members are thought to be Baluch. The jihadists say the “operation was conducted to inflict losses on the economy of criminal Iranian regime.”

According to the U.S. military Combating Terrorism Center, Ansar al-Fruqan has grown out of the defeated Jundallah terrorist group which had killed hundreds of Iranian officials and civilians. Jundallah was a Baluch jihadi insurgency fighting for a "Free Baluchistan" in the area of south-west Pakistan and south-east Iran. Its leader was killed in 2010 and it has since split and evolved into Ansar al-Furqan and other groups. Some of these are under foreign influence. Mark Perry reported in 2012:

A series of CIA memos describes how Israeli Mossad agents posed as American spies to recruit members of the terrorist organization Jundallah to fight their covert war against Iran.

Mossad agents hired Jundallah terrorists to kill nuclear experts in Iran. It should not be a surprise then that a Jundallah follow-up group is now attacking Iranian economic infrastructure in the very same moment that the Mossad and the CIA coordinate another campaign to overthrow the Iranian government. This clearly points to a wider and well organized plan.

Last night groups of 20 to 50 young men appeared in some 20 cities and towns of Iran and started to vandalize (vid) the streets. They took down street demarcations and billboards, smashed windows and set fire to trashcans. Short videos of tens of incidents appeared on various Twitter accounts. The descriptions were often very exaggerated.

The "protesters burn government offices in the Ahvaz Province" video only shows the burning of a trashcan in front of a building. The only noise in the "police using live rounds on protesters" video are from the smashing of windows of an office container. A video promoted as "3 people were killed in police shooting of Lorestan" shows a small but loud group. Two people are carried away but it is unclear who they are or what, if anything, happened to them. No shooting is heard and no police can be seen. In other videos police is responding to stone throwing and vandalizing rioters.

The groups, their appearance in some 20 cities and what they did was clearly coordinated. Media promoters aggregate their videos for a larger public. The Iranian government asked the message application Telegram, widely used in Iran, to take down a channel that urged demonstrators to throw Molotov cocktails at official buildings. The head of the Telegram service agreed that such calls are against its Terms of Services and took the channel down. New channels with similar messages immediately sprang up. The Iranian government will have to completely block Telegram or infiltrate those Telegram channels to disrupt such coordination of militant activities.

Those U.S. politicians who had called to "bomb, bomb, bomb" Iran (John McCain) or had threatened to wage war against it (Hillary Clinton) issued statements in support of the "Iranian people"- i.e. the rioters in the streets. These are the same people who suffocate the Iranian people by pushing sanction round after sanction round onto them - hypocrites. Donald Trump and his State Department issued statements in support of the 'peaceful protesters' who vandalized their cities throughout the country and demanded that "the regime respect their basic human rights." The professed concerns for the Iranian people are nonsense. A recently leaked memo advised U.S. Secretary of State Tillerson:

... that the U.S. should use human rights as a club against its adversaries, like Iran, China and North Korea, while giving a pass to repressive allies like the Philippines, Egypt and Saudi Arabia.

The official U.S. uttering comes very early and is detrimental to any real movement in Iran. It obviously exposes these protests as U.S. supported and thereby kills off their chance to win a wider base in Iran.

Why is the U.S. doing this?

The plan may well be not to immediately overthrow the Iranian government, but to instigate a sharp reaction by the Iranian government against the militant operations in its country.

Suzanne Maloney‏ @MaloneySuzanne - 5:51 AM - 31 Dec 2017

And here's the thing: whatever the USG does or doesn't say about these protests, the reality is (as @POTUS tweeted) that the world is watching what happens in Iran. How Tehran responds to the current protests will shape its relationship w/the world, just as it did in 2009.

That reaction can then be used to implement wider and stricter sanctions against Iran especially from Europe. These would be another building block of a larger plan to suffocate the country and as an additional step on a larger escalation ladder.

Posted by b on December 31, 2017 at 14:06 UTC | Permalink

next page »

I always thought the 2009 "colour revolution" was an internal one - the losing candidates trying to overturn the true results to take power. The Americans seem to have been taken aback by it and no-one has claimed any responsibility since. This one does smell of outside involvement and could be the result of co-ordination between MbS, MbZ, Israel and Washington which given their combined abilities suggests this will fail.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Dec 31 2017 14:33 utc | 1

Iran knew it was coming and should be well prepared to deal with any "uprising" and foreign paid stooges. They might not even round up these vandals right now to track who is behind them, to expose the entire CIA/Mossad network.

Iranians are smart, I bet they'll outsmart Nutjobyahoos, MBS and CIA just fine, not without casualties of course.

Posted by: Harry | Dec 31 2017 14:37 utc | 2

@ Ghost Ship | 1

Its not either internal or foreign movement, its both. I.e. Greens (and dozens of other colors around the World), Maidan, Arabs spring, etc - any internal discontent are used by CIA to promote desired regime change. CIA doesnt just wait for it to happen either, its well prepared, cultivated and coordinated for many years in advance, they invest billions of dollars at it and nobody in the World are as good at "color revolutions" as US is.

Posted by: Harry | Dec 31 2017 14:48 utc | 3

iran must be winning well in syria, aiding the annihilation of zio satanic terrorists worldwide too, so the stirring in iran is scripted by the supreme race in perm hell. Kudos to the righteous nation, her internal tribulations are the trademark of ultimate faith and perseverance.

Posted by: mdranix | Dec 31 2017 14:57 utc | 4

A commenter on another platform pointed out that the placards the so-called protesters were carrying are in English, which point to the fact that the protest is largely English (American) oriented. b is right, the sympathy for the uprising is dead. The economic angle is plausible, but it would be a mistake if because of that the Iranian Authority fails to take a decisive step to nip the riot in the bud.

Posted by: Steve | Dec 31 2017 14:58 utc | 5

Well, good racount of events here so far, "b", thanks.

That nomination of the "dark knight" D´Andrea was the worst of presages for something like this to happen...I was just wondering when it was going to start...Then he goes around there pretending to be a faithful muslim....LoL!!!

Happy ( although quite convoluted everywhere ) New Year to all, that the righteous prevail....

Posted by: elsi | Dec 31 2017 15:28 utc | 6

This will likely lead to increased solidarity of the Russia/Syria/Iran/Iraq axis which smart players are recognizing as the most stabilizing

Posted by: financial matters | Dec 31 2017 15:49 utc | 7

Sarcastic mood...As happens with Russia...

The provocation of Iran towards its neighbors and "the free world" is evident

Posted by: elsi | Dec 31 2017 16:16 utc | 8

b, thank you for the assemblage of facts, for the interpretation of the "actions", and for the analysis.

Iran is the topic of the year 2018.

Israel took a heavy beating in Syria, and its last proxies, al Nusra, will be annihilated by the Russian Aerospace and combined forces of SAA and Hezbollah.

Thus, Bibi and Trump agreed to go all in together and make Tehran "cry". The CIA are masters at rocking a nation's economy and destabilizing a rigid regime. Mossad has deep, historic ratlines and plenty of actors within Iran's society. This will be the worst case of color revolution and troubles the Iranian government has ever faced. Trump, as is his style, will give Pompeo and the US military full powers to 'bring down' the government if they don't capitulate to his demands for a completely new nuclear agreement.

Expect thousands of Iranians to die.
And expect real terror used in Syria to try to alter the obvious outcome of an Assad political victory, not just a military victory.

The stakeholders who must alter this outcome in Syria are US and Israel. KSA and the young idiot MBS are irrelevant, as are any coalition members.

Syria won by Russia and Iran and Hezbollah is untenable to the geopolitics of Israel and the Hegemon.
CENTCOM could rationalize the loss, as it does the loss of Turkey. But the ideologues in DC and Tel Aviv could never see their empire so diminished. They thought they had their decades old plan in the bag by the near-end of 2015. Assad was weeks away from fleeing and Syria being permanently shattered into small pieces. Hezbollah would have been trapped, starved for arms and broken in another war (joining Israel this time would be France and US if not NATO).

All the frustration and rage at losing Syria is now the psychological fuel for destroying the Iranian government. It is an easy call. Israel is made diminutive in the present state of things. Russia and Putin are the deciders. Russia! for God's sake! The Orthodox! How can this be? The Khazarian blood boils at the thought much less the reality.

All Bibi, IDF and the Zionists have left is the core ideology and terror against everyone. They will never dominate the economies of the region. They can threaten no governments (even Lebanon, fragile Lebanon scoffs at them).

And the big bully in DC just realized that Raqqa is a not victory that earns them squat geopolitically. Nor Mosul, if you throw in that year-long catastrophe. The US has earned nothing. And its Kurds lost Kirkuk, virtually unseen as the massive loss of US-Israel in the region. (Won by IRGC's General Soleimani in a brilliant stroke.)

Thus, the losers of Syria-Iraq are forced to attack. And they will do the logical thing, use covert action, hybrid war, color revolution, terrorism and propaganda first. This will be the largest campaign and the most intensive in US history. It will be relentless all year. I suspect that the budget for this is in the range of $10 billion for starters, and if you add what the military will provide, what certain billionaires will provide, the true budget will be $25 billion.

This is what the last 38 years has spun. A vortex of hate that is funneled at Tehran. Lives now mean nothing. Blood and broken bones mean nothing. Play all of Bibi's hate messages and McMaster's drooling demagoguery and you will have some of the temper of what is going to unfold.

This is for everything. If you notice the ideological goal of the new neocons, you will see that they make negotiation, diplomacy and compromise impossible. We see it with Russia. They will have none of it. Ukraine? War. There must be war. North Korea? none of it. There can only be a 'bloody nose', maybe another Korean apocalypse now. Syria? Assad must go, Syria must be broken into "federal or smaller pieces". Iran? Death to Shias. The end to independence. (And total destruction of Hezbollah--so death returns to Lebanon.)

This is the national security policy of Trump, the Hegemon. He is embodied now as the hegemonic avatar. It is no longer just the economic-military empire. It has a personality and psychology now.

Know it. Study it. Understand it. Hegemony quickly consumed him and he wears it like his battle suit.

At war with the world . . .

Posted by: Red Ryder | Dec 31 2017 16:17 utc | 9

Some data to keep in mind

They even do not mind doing their "thing" openly in everybody´s sight....Since the "king is obviously naked", chutzpah grows exponentially

Posted by: elsi | Dec 31 2017 16:22 utc | 10

A purely defensive approach to such an attack puts Iran at a disadvantage. Iran should extract a price from the attackers. Syria, unfortunately, could not do this at the start of the western backed invasion in 2011. But Iran is much stronger than Syria. In response to the pipeline attack, a proportional attack on KSA oil infrastructure is indicated. Preferably with "ISIS" claiming responsibility. This will lead MBS to revise his calculations.

Other things can be done to hurt the attacking countries with assets in the region.

Posted by: lysander | Dec 31 2017 16:26 utc | 11

Peace on earth, everyone. I would say that it would be wonderful if this color revolution attempt pushed Rouhani to roll back his neoliberal austerity policy to put more money in the hands of ordinary people--it would be a nice case of unintended consequences as the Iranian government would become more popular as a result of US/Israeli actions.

Posted by: WorldBLee | Dec 31 2017 16:40 utc | 12

Canada sums itself to the "supportive field" in favour of "Iranian protests", are we going to witness a "five eyes" ´ consecutively declaration of support???

Iran attacks Canada for its interference after the protests

Posted by: elsi | Dec 31 2017 16:40 utc | 13

Kayhan News, which is the quasi-official state newspaper in Iran, and has access to many top-secret sources and is the only outlet allowed to publish sensitive information released this today:

This is Shariatmadari, the head of the newspaper, telling his base (IRGC/Basij) that the whole plan was in motion long before these days, and was the original intent of the Rouhani government from day one. I believe this is accurate, as I've had very similar analysis about Rouhani's actions since day 1. It appears that Rouhani is a cog in this US game.

P.S: Get an SSL certificate for your website so that we can post comments on HTTPS. It's not safe on HTTP.

Posted by: Bioox | Dec 31 2017 16:55 utc | 14

Awesome article by b, impressive in all senses. Congrats.
Iranians know much better then falling into this "regime trap", this attempt will fail indeed, as you pointed out above, but your are dead right, the coalition of killing know very well a "regime change" in Iran is far from easy, and their intent may be to create dents or over reaction by the national Government thus using it at pretext to sanctions or other brutal UN measures.
At the end of the day it may fall into the hands of Iranians powerful allies such as Russia, China and India, Iran is about to be admitted at SCO/2018 and the Eurasian group, thus bailing it out from the western teeth, meaning time is running out for the coalition of killing to isolate Iran, they need it done in few months or it will be over after Iran is part of SCO and Eurasian Economic group, tick tack tick tack.

Posted by: Canthama | Dec 31 2017 17:14 utc | 15

As I had suggested above Iran now cut off Telegram access for most of the country. That will make coordination and "command and control" of the riots much for difficult.
AP: Protests in Iran fanned by exiled journalist, messaging app

As protests over Iran’s faltering economy rapidly spread across the country, a channel on a mobile messaging app run by an exiled journalist helped fan the passions of some of those who took to the street.

The Telegram app closed a channel run by Roohallah Zam after Iranian authorities complained that it was inciting violence, just hours before the government shut down the app entirely on Sunday. Zam, who denies the allegations, meanwhile launched new channels to spread messages about upcoming protests and share videos from demonstrations.

What happens next could influence the future course of the largest protests Iran has seen since 2009.

It’s hard to overstate the power of Telegram in Iran. Of its 80 million people, an estimated 40 million use the free app created by Russian national Pavel Durov. Its clients share videos and photos, subscribing to groups where everyone from politicians to poets broadcast to fellow users.

I am not sure yet who to believe with this pipeline incident but I could have been a (media) stunt and nothing else.

FARSnews - Iran Dismisses Reports on Terrorist Attack on Southern Oil Pipeline

Aqajari Oil and Gas company which is responsible for the protection and maintenance of oil and gas lines in Omidiyeh region announced in a statement on Sunday that "no incident which damages the working oil and gas pipelines has happened" and media reports claiming that Ansar al-Forqan terrorist group has launched an attack on Omidiyeh oil pipeline are "sheer lies".

Posted by: b | Dec 31 2017 17:27 utc | 16

CIA's favorite tactic of planting snipers to shoot at the both sides went live in Iran:

Iran: Protesters killed by foreign agents, official claims

An Iranian official claimed on Sunday that two people who died during anti-government protests in Dorud were targeted by foreign agents and not Iranian police.

In an interview on state television, the Deputy Governor of Lorestan Province blamed demonstration violence on “enemies of the revolution, Takfiri groups and foreign agents…No shots were fired by the police and security forces.”


Posted by: Harry | Dec 31 2017 17:37 utc | 17

Reliable companion analysis to b) from Alexander Mercouris with statistics and this conclusion:

Outlining the various likely reasons for the protests however shows why – if the intention really is to topple the government – they are most unlikely to succeed.

The very fact that the US – and Donald Trump in particular – are backing the protests, and the widespread and probably justified suspicion within Iran and around the world that the US has a hand in them is certain to alarm many Iranians, deterring them from supporting the protests and causing them to rally behind the government.

Posted by: Sid2 | Dec 31 2017 17:54 utc | 18

Speaking of CIA election leads me to speak about the so-called "Russian Election Hacking" of the 2016 US elections.

The brazen, empty landscape of ethics and morals of the state CIA press kneels at the altar of government spending and big government programs. Whether social re-engineering using division issues like gender or racial identity or paramilitary operations or economic hit men in places like Iran.

Empty-headed news readers like Joe Scarborough & Jake Tapper are easily co-opted by the state shills that feed them info to colorize their editorials without the real need for research or critical thinking.

Regarding the election hack, the CIA also projected the reality of their own actions in a false narrative to left-leaning print media corporations like the NY Times & Amazon Post. Both controllable through investment and/or division issue research.

It may even be the case that members of the media were paid to push the Russian Hacking narrative non-stop. In the case of MSNBC, show host Rachael Maddow and Sen Chuck Shumer, let it slip that Trump would be "really stupid" to go up against the intelligence community because "they can get you back in 6 different ways."

In the end, it becomes apparent that the CIA has been controlling the script of the news through intimidation, payments and more.

Enter Fusion GPS, whose Russian hacking script ended up being paid for by the Clinton Election team through their law firm, Perkins Coie. The Obama administration even donated $972,000 to Perkins Coie during the 2016 election cycle.

Every attempt by Special Prosecutor Mueller has failed in its magnitude and scope to find anything remotely resembling Russian collusion in the election.

The Wikileaks claim of involvement was proven false. Indeed, Julian Assange claims that the entire Russian Hacking narrative, bought and paid for by Clinton & Obama, was a false flag operation by the CIA designed to put pressure on President Trump.

And there is no there "there' with the Trump administration claims. Mueller, with an omelet on his face, should consider a new electric shaving device, maybe a chainsaw.

In the end,the fishing expedition has shown vividly how the Clintons and their deep state friends will lie, sabotage, use character assassination, ruin careers and more to get the power that they must "control" to run their financial scams and paramilitary projects around the world.

By choosing the election hacking scheme, deep state was in deep projection mode, as they themselves are guilty of having hacked or attempted to hack, every election since their inception.

There is no Russian Hacking; rather, deep state is looking at an educated electorate who is now wise to their bullshit, scams and unconstitutional crap.

Posted by: John | Dec 31 2017 17:58 utc | 19

CIA & Mossad = GESTAPO × 1000

Posted by: nottheonly1 | Dec 31 2017 18:22 utc | 20

I cannot stand the hubris of my fellow Americans.

We are in tears because the Russians (allegedly) released accurate emails prior to an election claiming it is an attack on the very foundation of our democracy, yet some FOX anchor dimbulb, is goading a Sen. into suggesting that we should be sending arms to Iranian Kurds to fuel the 'democratic' insurgency. He was also decrying how only Trump is speaking out while the Europeans are silent (ie. respecting Iranian sovereignty).

There you have it, only U.S. sovereignty is sacred but we have the right to change any other govt on the planet.
I just wish these people would listen to themselves.

John Quincy Adams, "She knows well that by enlisting under banners other than her own, ... even the banners of foreign independence, she would involve herself beyond [the power of] extrication...The fundamental maxims of her policy would insensibly change from liberty to force.... She might become the dictatress of the world. She would be no longer the ruler of her own spirit "

Posted by: Christian Chuba | Dec 31 2017 18:36 utc | 21

Similar tactics as have been used since the end of the Cold War.

One of the worst spreaders of propaganda is this Wall Street Journal reporter, Farnaz Fassihi:

Eliot Higgins is also doing all he can to make this sound legitimate.

Posted by: Guest77 | Dec 31 2017 18:37 utc | 22

re: elsi, #13

As reported previously on MofA:

"Then there is this: Carl Bildt @carlbildt - 9:38 PM - 28 Dec 2017 from Rome...'Reports of signals of international satellite TV networks jammed in large cities of Iran. Would be sign of regime fear of today's protests spreading.' A search in various languages finds exactly zero such 'reports'.Carl Bildt is a former Swedish prime minister. He was recruited in 1973 as a CIA informant and has since grown into a full blown US asset. He was involved in the Ukraine coup and tried to personally profit from it."

This November tweet from Canada's Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland: 'Happy to welcome Carl Bildt to Toronto and speak about our shared priorities including Ukraine's sovereignty...' Bildt replies: 'Great to assess the state of the world with friend and Canada FM @cafreeland in Toronto today."

Canada is up for whatever USrael has on. Watch for it to attack Iran with the same malevolence it currently directs towards Russia or Venezuela...

Posted by: John Gilberts | Dec 31 2017 19:02 utc | 23

thanks b.. excellent overview... i suspect some type of iran white helmets is or already has been set up for an ongoing dispatch of all the lies that we came to understand the white helmets purvey over the dynamic in syria.. the west will fund a similar dynamic for iran, if they can..

elsi / john gilberts.. indeed canada has become a big part of the problem which is especially embarrassing for us canucks.. anything usa-israel wants - we automatically rubber stamp.. ignorance reigns supreme..

Posted by: james | Dec 31 2017 19:31 utc | 24

In the last 24 Hours of #IranianProtests ,
72,200 tweets , tweeted w/ this hashtag " #تظاهرات_سراسرى "
that invited Iranian to protest ,
-74% of them were out of #Iran
-35% of them were in Arabic Language
-Saudis tweets were more than Iranian themselves
-UK in 3rd place

Posted by: fx | Dec 31 2017 19:32 utc | 25

The US/Israel are fighting for big stakes, the loss of the Middle East, they will try every evil trick in their well used playbook, I agree with lysander @11 people in glass houses should not throw stones and that there are many easy targets in Saudi Arabia which can be hit [unattributed of course] Israel is afraid of Iranian precision missiles which showed up at number three in their to do list, when really it is number one, 3/ Countering Iranian ballistic missiles development and the Iranian “precision project” aimed at manufacturing precision guided missiles in Syria and Lebanon for Hezbollah to be used against Israel in a future war. US/Israel and Saudi Arabia are thrashing about and making big mistakes. How about a twofer, an Iranian proxy disrupts Saudi oil production or delivery and then profit when the price of oil goes through the roof.

Posted by: harrylaw | Dec 31 2017 19:32 utc | 26

>>>>> nottheonly1 | Dec 31, 2017 1:22:06 PM | 20

No, you wrong.

CIA & Mossad = A great big fat zero

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Dec 31 2017 19:48 utc | 27

>>>> Harry | Dec 31, 2017 9:48:10 AM | 3

It's not the CIA but the State Department, NED, DNI, IRI, Freedom House, etc. who organize this shit and because they haven't yet sunk to the depths of bureaucratic incompetence that the CIA has, they've had some success.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Dec 31 2017 19:52 utc | 28

Sid2 @ 18: Thanks for the link to Alex Mercouris' article at The Duran. It complements B's article very well. Mercouris has always been a knowledgeable and graceful writer on political, legal and economics issues. I'd be interested to know how the bird flu epidemic that indirectly led to the increased prices for poultry and eggs began. It's possible that a particular strain of the bird flu virus, or more perhaps, is now endemic in parts of the Middle East, western Asia or central Asia, and that it travels with refugees and migrants.

It seems that so much of what Alex says in his article about the current economic situation in Iran and what B says here in his post regarding the nutty Iran "expert" Suzanne Maloney's ravings and the outbreaks of violence (real or exaggerated) in parts of Iran that once again the fake news reaching the West is aimed at (a) feeding egos in the US government, US intel agencies and various US-based NGOs, all of whom believe what they want to believe, and not what is actually happening on the ground, and (b) pushing diaspora Iranians and the Western public into supporting more US military intervention, whether through an actual invasion involving the usual coalition partners or through currently underemployed ISIS takfiris evacuated from Raqqa in Syria.

Posted by: Jen | Dec 31 2017 19:56 utc | 29

If you look at all the videos and pictures , they are very tightly framed, so that ten or twenty people can be passed off as a large crowd. This was frequently done by the terrorists in Syria to suggest that they had more support than they actually did. I can remember one demonstration which was supposed to involve hundreds according to the picture titles in various newspapers, but another photographer took a wide-angle shot of the same protest that showed there were only about twenty people present.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Dec 31 2017 19:58 utc | 30

@9 Eloquently said Red Ryder. This may be the beginning of the final chapter for the End of Babylon (Zio/Hegemon nexus)..

Posted by: Lozion | Dec 31 2017 20:14 utc | 31

Even the stooge-in-chief of "Human Rights Watch" does the CIA's bidding - and gets eggs on his face.

Posted by: fx | Dec 31 2017 20:17 utc | 32

@b...thank you so much! These two articles hold more weight than a year's worth of NYT hardcopy.

@bioox #14 re: SSL - SSL (and now TLS) is in the realm of 'locks keep honest people honest'. Most sites aren't worth the trouble for the spooks to attempt decryption or MiTM attacks, but here at MoA there is certainly something worth their effort. Further, it should not be the sole responsibility of the site operator to provide security for readers/commenters. The resources required to get security right would drain our fair author's pocketbook before you could say 'rumplestiltskin'! Going 'https' would be window dressing. Users here, if concerned, should be taking measures to obfuscate their own identities/locations.

Posted by: Dr. Wellington Yueh | Dec 31 2017 20:25 utc | 33

Ghost Ship @30 Same thing happened at the felling of Saddam's statue in 2003 "the endless TV replays concealed how inorganic the cheering crowds were. At most there were "several hundred" people in the square, with "a quarter to a half" of them being reporters or Marines".

Posted by: harrylaw | Dec 31 2017 20:25 utc | 34

re #34 - I agree that it is the poster's responsibility and risk to post information here or elsewhere.

WTIM, here is a great combo to protect you on sites like this:

* Get a router from someplace like with a hardware advanced firewall and VPN combination.

* Use a browser like Firefox or Waterfox with good privacy protections configured tightly to limit tracking etc.

* Get add on extensions that will *spoof* your browser profile, browser header, referrers, your IP, etc. I use Random Agent Spoofer.

*NEVER go online without your VPN enabled unless you must engage in e-commerce or the like.

* Lastly, get messaging and email service that is encrypted.

Posted by: John | Dec 31 2017 20:37 utc | 35

@17 Sigh..

Posted by: Lozion | Dec 31 2017 20:59 utc | 36

My take on the noise in some parts of Iran, it's a nothing burger!!!

It's clearly a protest hijacked by shady idiots who're hoping to rule the region(again). Whoever sparked this fire should brace themselves for the repercussions that will be felt across the region. It's almost as though they're not tired of see more American body bags coming home.

Posted by: Zico | Dec 31 2017 21:01 utc | 37

I believe the goal here is to put more pressure on Iran, incl, sanctions, but perhaps more importantly to give Putin an excuse to kick Iran under the bus.

Posted by: paul | Dec 31 2017 21:08 utc | 38

Ghostship, Harrylaw: I've heard similar shenanigans with inflating crowd numbers at so-called leading opposition celeb Alexei Navalny's rallies in Russia. Many attendees are said to be teenagers too young to vote and organisers of these rallies offer freee cash payments to increase the numbers. Where does the money come from - who knows, the US embassy in Moscow perhaps? 😊

Posted by: Jen | Dec 31 2017 21:36 utc | 39

@Jen #29

We might as has been said seeing the thrashings of wounded and dying beasts, e.g. I read today US efforts around al Tanff in Syria are completely stymied. For months now reports have shown descent and frustration for US-Israel hegemanias--reversals in Syria, failure in Qatar, stupidity re Lebanon and Hariri, the juvenilia of MbS hanging billionaires up by their heels to shake money out of their pockets, the quelling and meekness of the kurds, the alienation of Turkey, and the continuing strengthening of the Syria-Russia-Iran-Hezbollah alliance. Now Trump leaps moronically into more blowhard, right after his recent brilliance with Jerusalem plus Haley whining like an infant deprived of a toy. Plus the transparency of the record from the WMD falseness of 03 to the unraveling fiasco being run by the Mueller investigation is not looking good either.

Posted by: Sid2 | Dec 31 2017 21:55 utc | 40

Why Trump's Troops are training ISIS Terrorists
is the question Eric Zuesse asks and answers in this brilliant essay. If it would be up to me, I would name it "Article of the Year 2017". It's implications though spell doom for 2018.
The American population is successfully kept in the dark and unable, or unwilling to end this nightmare.

For decades, the German people were asked:
"How could you have let that happen?"

The time has now come to ask the American people:

"Why are you letting it happen NOW?"

Posted by: nottheonly1 | Dec 31 2017 22:01 utc | 41

I posted a copy of an intelligence cable, released by wikileaks, on the previous thread on Iran, but it was toward the end of that thread's lifecycle so I assume many did not get to read it; so here it is:

These riots are reminiscent of the 2009 Ashura-day protests as are the tacticts used by the western ICs. One such example is in the form of a cable sent to the highest offices in the US government and released by wikileaks. Here are some notable exerpts (read the cable in its entirety for a full explanation):

"In a January 27 meeting with Iranian press, an unnamed Deputy Intelligence Minister provided details on some of the arrests made in connection with the December 27 Ashura-day alia) demonstrations. He ascribed the Ashura-day 'rioting' to (inter alia) the German government, Western intelligence services, 1970's era Iranian leftist/Marxist Iranian political groups, the Bahais, Royalist groups, and expatriate Iranian political activists"

"some of those arrested in connection with the December 27 Ashura-day 'riots' were
part of an Iranian network connected to the German Intelligence
Service and were being guided by German diplomats in Iran. This network was composed of young men and women who did propaganda work for the Green Path Opposition (GPO) and were in contact with
foreign websites and elements

"These two German diplomats, using the aliases 'Yogi and Ingo' were active in this regard, and
there were films and pictures of them in contact with young Iranian
men and women 'outside of diplomatic relations.'
These two German
diplomats were present during the Ashura-day riots and had 'greens signs, bracelets and t-shirts' which they distributed"

"The Deputy Intelligence Minister told press that US-based
Mohsen Sazegara and UK-based Alireza Nurizadeh were two key
individuals abroad serving to guide the 'rioters,' making
statements and using BBC and VOA to call people to the streets.

"In terms of theoretical guidance, he said both Vali Nasr
and Hossein Bashiriyeh, both President Obama advisors, were leading
the US intellectual current concerning Iran and were helping guide
USG use of cyberspace to support Iran's 'seditionist current.'

"He said 30 of this group were arrested in conjunction
with the Ashura day riots, along with approximately 20 Mujahedin-e
...He also cited the Ashura-related arrests of 15 Bahais,
who it characterized as a tool of the 'Zionist regime' (Note: the
'Bahi World Center' is in Haifa).

"also cited the arrest of an approximately 42-year old Iranian woman, affiliated with a 'royalist terrorist group,' who held 'several European passports,' and who had come to Iran after the election to stir up trouble. She had recruited 'thugs and goons,' paying them with gold and jewelry."

Posted by: Tacitus | Dec 31 2017 22:08 utc | 42

12/31/017 The murder of the sovereign nation state of Islamic Republic of Iran is still on the up menu by any means necessary.

Posted by: Douglas Baker | Dec 31 2017 22:49 utc | 43

Unlike the current clumsy CIA operation, the 2009 protests were homegrown and, despite some infiltration, did not represent elements radically opposed to the I.R. I am friends with several "Green movement" exiles in Paris, and they are all nationalistic, in favor of the I.R. regime to varying degrees, and at any rate staunchly in favor of Iran's foreign policy.

Posted by: John | Jan 1 2018 0:14 utc | 44

Posted by: John | Dec 31, 2017 7:14:26 PM | 46

The solution would be, of course, if Israelis and Iranians could get rid of their corrupt regimes at the same time. Protests in Tel Aviv look promising.

Posted by: somebody | Jan 1 2018 0:32 utc | 45

Ramin Mazaheri just added a useful perspective at the Saker site, regarding the grass roots of Iran:
Iran protests: Western salivation, agitation & desperation [not linked]

Exactly like in Venezuela this year – there is a hardcore, GRASSROOTS system of citizen supporters who will defend the Iranian Revolution with their lives…because they feel the Iranian Revolution (like Chavismo) has benefited the average citizen so very much. That’s why Venezuelan democracy didn’t fall – it was due to the common person attending a counter-protest, maybe even wielding a garden tool. This is what preserved Venezuelan democracy – not state military action – and this is also what happened in Iran in 2009.


What must also be remembered is that Iran already had their “NATO intervention” – it was called the Iran-Iraq War. For 8 horrible years the West foisted Iraq on Iran, supplied Iraq with weapons, turned a blind eye to the worst chemical weapons atrocities since World War One, and did all they could to create, prolong and influence the deadliest war in the last quarter of the 20th century.

And it was still not enough.

I've read quite a lot by Mazaheri in recent months, and I consider him a really good analyst, with an admirable socialist viewpoint. He has a great talent for connecting philosophies and abstract concepts to ordinary experience. This particular piece rambles a bit towards the end, but he broke his vacation to write it, somewhat off the cuff. I recommend the article - it's certainly worth reading for anyone whose faith in Iran's ability to survive this attack may be weak ;)

Posted by: Grieved | Jan 1 2018 1:40 utc | 46

Al Jazeera - not in the Saudi/US camp

They don't have the critical mass, and security control is enough to make Rouhani look good.

According to Edward Snowden Telegram messaging is not safe. I bet Iranian security knows very much what is going on.

Posted by: somebody | Jan 1 2018 2:02 utc | 47

Great article and links, b. Some great comments again.

In the failed 2009 "Green Revolution," there was a young woman who was allegedly shot by Iranian forces. I'd never looked at the videos as I tend to avoid gratuitous violence. But yesterday i was persuaded to check it out since it looked staged.

Yep. One can actually see the moments when a man apparently squirts some fake blood on her face.

This writer posted a number of articles about the 2009 events.

Posted by: Daniel | Jan 1 2018 3:31 utc | 48

The wahhabi/zionist terrorist US/UK/NATO/saudi/israhell/united arab despots coalition will be defeated in Iran...

Posted by: guy | Jan 1 2018 5:28 utc | 49

Re: Posted by: elsi | Dec 31, 2017 10:28:25 AM | 6

If this anonymous D'Andrea character is so odious and responsible for stirring up trouble for decades all around the place, why is he still alive, and why hasn't he been dealt with?!?!?

He certainly wouldn't be missed!

Posted by: Julian | Jan 1 2018 6:16 utc | 50

Maybe what people like Ramin Mazaheri are missing is that the US is entering into a full spectrum siege of Iran? The current 'protests' only a small part of a wider assault? US needs some martyrs in Iran, same as it needed some martyrs in Ukraine (MH17) and elsewhere.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Jan 1 2018 6:52 utc | 51

@Ghostship #27

Maybe to the uninvolved and uninformed

Certainly not to those who die at
their hands, who are tortured and

Posted by: nottheonly1 | Jan 1 2018 6:58 utc | 52

2009 protests in Iran were not CIA Colour revolution b. Speak to any Iranian and they will tell you the same. Your anti imperialist stance sometimes leads you to mistakenly defend authoritative groups of governments. Remember the IRI executed thousands of leftists following the revolution which was hijacked. Many revolutionaries and prominent figures mysteriously died (Mostafa Khamran, Taleqani, Shariati, etc.), including Khomeini's own son in the mid 90s.

Posted by: Ninel | Jan 1 2018 7:43 utc | 53

Daniel #50, Neda killing was real. Speak to a few Iranians about it before relying on your own logic and dubious sources online. Also you may want to check YouTube, there are plenty videos of her mother at Neda's gravesite mourning. In general, I think the suspicions of many of you are leading you to false conclusions. Not everything that happens in Iran is due to Israeli and US meddling. Millions of Iranians are not happy with the clerical regime and I think it's an insult to millions of Iranians who have to live under a dictatorial and corrupt mullacracy to discredit genuine grass root movements against the regime. You should really do your research and see what the government there does in terms of allowing child marriages, execution, torture and imprisonment, repression of trade unions (I once met the former leader of Tehran's bus workers union Mansoor Osanloo who fled to turkey after being tortured), drug trafficking, and siphoning off the Marion's wealth and resources. I have many Iranian friends (liberals, socialists and even conservatives) who have told me about the many atrocities committed by the government. They are not fans of MEK, or the Pahlavis or US et al but they do not support the clerical regime and were in full support of the 1999 student protests and 2009 green movement led by Mir Hussein and Mehdi Khoroubi. So please, before blowing hot air out of your ass , kindly do your research and ask some Iranians from different walks of life about their own country's affairs

Posted by: Ninel | Jan 1 2018 8:04 utc | 54

How many millions you talking Ninal? Percentage of population.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Jan 1 2018 8:10 utc | 55

The Mercouris article on Iran economy/inflation ect is interesting. Price of eggs ect. Bird flue seems to spread quickly. Would make a great bio weapon to use against a country or a section of its economy. (have to download pdf to read relevant data on Iran)

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Jan 1 2018 8:44 utc | 56

@ Ninel

You are most likely zio-shill or MEK, since you are highly biased anti-Iran government. The claims you make range from 60% false to 100% fake. And yes, I have Iranian friends, and polls also show vast majority of Iranians support their government, including polling done by the West.

So when you speak on behalf of all Iranians, your hypocrisy is staggering, if you Iranian at all, that is. Educate yourself what CIA/Mossad is doing in Iran, then come and post, not before that.

Posted by: Harry | Jan 1 2018 9:07 utc | 57

Re: Posted by: elsi | Dec 31, 2017 10:28:25 AM | 6

If this anonymous D'Andrea character is so odious and responsible for stirring up trouble for decades all around the place, why is he still alive, and why hasn't he been dealt with?!?!?

He certainly wouldn't be missed!

Posted by: Julian | Jan 1 2018 9:23 utc | 58

@ ninel.. i agree with harry @59.. you are going to have to do better then that if you want a free lunch from the west, lol...

Posted by: james | Jan 1 2018 10:09 utc | 59

Well it does at least provide a nice distraction for the US public, so it the domestic woes pale a little for them. I will therefore in global public interest emind them of a few things they can contemplate on in the new year:
1. Trump is still POTUS
2. National debt spiralling out control. Even interest cannot be repaid.
3. Tax cuts will essentially leave them even more poor.
4. Obamacare will become close to nonobtainable for most, legislation.
5. Midway Elections will be a choice between pest or cholera.
6. Russia is alive and kicking and so is China.
7. NK is probably there also
8. A new bankrupt 52'nd state is looming in the horizon : UK
9. Putin will be reelected.
10. The EU will probably not agree to any sactions rubbish on anything the US proposes, they might actually not agree to anything.

Its not doom everything though:
1. Guns will become cheaper, more lethal and more easy to obtain. American citizens rejoice ( The rest of the world does too, but for other reasons)
2. Rising sea levels will open for new exiting recreational areas and beaches.

Posted by: Den Lille Abe | Jan 1 2018 10:36 utc | 60

In the second of the 4 part Oliver Stone Putin interview series, Putin goes into detail about active Yankee support for Islamic "rebels" in Russia, including flying them around inside Russia to keep them out of harms way. Putin also has a letter from the CIA informing him that AmeriKKKa reserves the right to support rebellious anti-govt minorities anywhere in the world...
So it's not hard to imagine that Iran is receiving copious quantities of Helpful Hints from Russia, China and many other victims of CIA plots.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jan 1 2018 12:12 utc | 61

Posted by: Ninel | Jan 1, 2018 3:04:28 AM | 56

I would not be happy with the Iranian regime if I lived there, but lots of people where I live - Germany - are not happy with the German regime.

That does not mean we would appreciate someone destabilizing our country.

It has become easy with modern technology and the organisations that can do it are in place.

Judging from twitter and alternative German media MEK is very active. Yes they are a cult like sect and used to be on the terrorism list. They have an incredible amount of money for lobbying in the US and the European Parliament. Their leadership is based in Paris (German language link). They are known to inflate their numbers and bus in young people for a Paris trip to inflate their numbers. They are bound to use the same practices now in Iran.

Posted by: somebody | Jan 1 2018 12:59 utc | 62

The Zionists launched a whole country's military against Iran and that failed - the Iran/Iraq war. They seriously underestimate the intelligence of the Iranians - they may not be 100% happy with their government but they are 100% certain the Zionists have zero concern for them.

Posted by: Anonymous | Jan 1 2018 14:06 utc | 63

The protest phase is over. The violent phase started early. Let me guess - they do not have enough people for this either.

Posted by: somebody | Jan 1 2018 15:19 utc | 64

Good explainer what has been going on internally in Iran plus role of media in warfare

Posted by: somebody | Jan 1 2018 16:07 utc | 65

@56, Ninel
Granted the regime is odious in many respects, unsurprising in a theocracy, but how is change to occur in your view? Surely the admirable individuals you name would be against foreign meddling in Iran's affairs.

Posted by: Shakesvshav | Jan 1 2018 16:07 utc | 66

anglo persian oil must be returned to the families who are behind bp and the shell nationalisation is theft the empire of the city of london and greater israel must be paid compensation for these thefts.
the original contracts from 1913 clearly state that these persian folks in iran where simply front men for the various families in london and new york.

put simply these mad mullars are thieves and vagabonds and must pay for the oil and gas stolen since the 1980s.
15% is the standard amount allowed for the locals nationalisation is not something that chatham house rules allow.
stick to the 15% or end up chavezzed or gadaffied husseined

Posted by: menechem golani | Jan 1 2018 16:29 utc | 67

55 here here

The followers of Pharisaism(judaism) have been at this permanent revolution for a long time. Ever since gathering a mob to shout Crucify him!, they pressure government into violating the laws to calm the mob the zionists have stirred up. Anyone who stands in their way is falsely accused, imprisoned, killed, etc. Old playbook written right there in the New Testament treatment of Christians by the antichrist followers of Pharisaism(judaism), for us to learn from, if we want to.

Posted by: simon | Jan 1 2018 16:40 utc | 68

re: Daniel | Dec 31, 2017 10:31:02 PM | 50

I also recommend the Willyloman site: [Search domain]
He does a really through job; researching every article/video he posts.

Posted by: frances | Jan 1 2018 16:46 utc | 69

The US State Dept. and CIA have been shooting their wads early ever since Maidan worked when Yanukovic fled.

They screwed up in Turkey, recently in Lebanon with Hariri, a time or two in Venezuela, they threw ISIS against Duterte in the Philippines, Libya is still not in their grasp, and of course, Donbass with assassinations and plots of more damage to DNR, LNR.

They can cause a lot of chaos even with a failure.But these color revolutions are not going well.

This one in Iran has yet to produce the iconic image the propaganda requires. It has some blood in the streets, but not enough in one place to cause a sensation.

The year is young. This was predictable. Iran's government often missteps. It is paying for some of its sins now.

Fortunately, the hybrid war is a long war. There is time to adjust and ameliorate the conflict. The internal contradictions are much tougher issues because of the religious ideology as foundation for governance. It just has no good outcome.

Inside Iran is a Persian civilization that struggles to become free of rigid dictatorship of the right or the religious.

The demographics of the nation are like lava rising. Technology facilitates this yearning of the energetic young, the creative minds and the industrious developers.

It can not be shoveled into a constriction of ideology.

It needs to flow.

Posted by: Red Ryder | Jan 1 2018 17:03 utc | 70

Posted by: Shakesvshav | Jan 1, 2018 11:07:29 AM | 68

My smell test for revolution is that slogans or demands name goals FOR something not AGAINST something.

You can assemble very diverse movements hating each other "AGAINST" something, so if you follow a demonstration you cannot be sure of the outcome should your co-demonstrators win.

In Germany, if you follow people hating "the system" it is very likely you end up with fascists.

Posted by: somebody | Jan 1 2018 17:15 utc | 71

@Harry 59

So all critics of IRI are imperialists with an agenda? Do you know what goes on in Evin prison? Do you know how many freedom living people with no connection to the outside world are imprisoned and tortured? Do you know what happens to workers who protest against unpaid wages? Do you know anything about the plight of Iranian women who simply want to have rights over their own bodies? Do you know how many people are living in poverty? Do you know islamshahr is one of the poorest cities in the world (described in Mike Davis's book Planet of Slums)? You have some nerve to spew totally ignorant things about the people of Iran. Tens of thousands of people took to the sreeeys in 2009, why don't you look at the videos, there were children, teenagers, mothers and fathers and students demanding basic civil rights and look at how the basij and police responded. Was Moussvi and Kherrobi agents? Really!? And Ayatollah Shariatmadari who saved Khomeini's life by promoting him to title of marja when the Shah was about to execute him, why was Shariatmadari put on house arrest after the revolution? Why was Ayatollah Montazeri silenced after he spoke out about the execution of thousands of people in the late 80s? Why are students at Tehran university frequently harassed for demanding basic things that have nothing to do with the US or outside world? Why is Monty being given to Hamas when there are children selling goods in the streets just to survive (I've been to Tehran and seen how many kids and teenagers work in the bazaar), what does this have to do with the US? Or regular reports of ex Iranian regime officials fleeing the country with millions of dollars like the guy who fled to Canada? The public housing that was built under Ahmadinejad that was totally destroyed during the recent earth quake and which roughshod spoke out against, that's the work of Zionism and MEK? The mysterious disappearance of popular Islamic officials (Taleqani, Ahmad Khomeini) is the work of outsiders too? Mansoor osabloo the bus workers union rep who had his tongue split open in prison (check out the YouTube) for exercising economic rights is a CIA Stooge? Abdolkarim Soroush who is one of Iran's most prominent philosophers and former regime supporter but turned critic is on Mossad's payroll? I'm afraid some of you are just totally ignorant about Iranian politics and making wild unsubstantiated claims. Yes outside foreign influence is a problem but the regime itself uses that excuse to clamp down on grass roots movements all the time. You can't blame all problems including mismanagement of the economy , corruption, high unemployment , prohibition of alcohol and mandatory hijab and moral policing on foreigners . Go Google Uncle Napolean and learn something from that preeminent Iranian writer .

Posted by: Ninel | Jan 1 2018 17:19 utc | 72

Posted by: Ninel | Jan 1, 2018 12:19:25 PM | 74

Yes, all the things you name are done by Iranians to Iranians and can be stopped when Iranians stop doing this to each other.

Creating circles of revenge between factions won't stop it.

Posted by: somebody | Jan 1 2018 17:49 utc | 73

@ 57 Peter

The many supporters of the Iranian regime that you see show up to rallies and who are transported to Tehran by the government have a stake in the system so to speak, they are employed by the state machinery and/or receive assistance and believe in the ideology that is spewed out by the government. I would suspect they number in the millions but this is not the point. Also, one could say many fear a post-revolutionary scenario similar to that of Libya, Syria, and elsewhere and so they may be hesitant to carry out such a revolution. However, this does not negate the fact that there has been a bourgeois civil rights movement in Iran since the Shah which is continuing into the present era. The 2009 Green movement was a civil rights movement, it challenged the clerical regime insofar as civil and political liberties are involved. If the Iranian regime wants to hold onto power and avoid foreign meddling, answer me this: why wouldn't regime officials grant greater domestic freedoms to people? Wouldn't that help protect against US/foreign meddling insofar as the latter uses civil liberties to criticise and rally people against the IRI? Really trivial and taken for granted liberties that you all enjoy like being able to go to pubs, traveling alone as a woman without being harassed by moral police, throwing parties, singing and dancing on video to a Happy song, etc?

The point is Iran has a lot of resources, more so than any country in the Middle East. They have oil, gas (WHICH alone made Qatar a very rich country and Iran has more gas than Qatar and Russia), minerals, petrochemical industry, nuclear technology and most importantly, Iranian ingenious capabilities. Iranians are among the most educated people in the world and their history is full of philosophers, scientists and poets (Ibn Khaldrun in the 13th century once remarked all the 'Muslim' and 'Islamic' figures were Persian including Avicenna, Rhazes, Biruni, Farabi, Khwarizmi, Nasir Tusi, Khayyam, Rumi, Hafez, Saa'di, etc). This is a country that should have an economy similar to Japan, Germany and other advanced capitalist states, yet because of outside meddling and sanctions AND domestic mismanagement and incompetence, has an economy that is smaller than Saudi Arabia's. Here is a nation of 80 million people, the brightest of which migrate outside of the country (Iran has the highest brain drain of 180 countries according to the International Monetary Fund and I have personally taught many Iranian students who come to my university from there). Do we blame the brain drain on Mossad and CIA as well? Why are a few million Iranians living abroad in Europe, US, Canada and even Turkey, UAE, Malaysia, and other countries that they would feel is inferior to their homeland (Iranians on the whole are nationalistic Aryan people who are proud of their history and geography and abilities).

PS My screen name is Lenin, spelled backwards. I'm a communist and the IRI is anti communist to its core. It killed and tortured all the leftists (with the help of the US government who sent the addresses of prominent leaders from Tudeh, the old MEK, Fedai and other groups. This is not a regime that is friendly to the left. It appropriates concepts and slogans from the left such as imperialism but it is not a freedom loving entity. Its history shows that if you actually familiarise yourself with it. Remember the left in Iran was instrumental in the revolution. Yet the mullahs forcefully took power, and used the war with Iraq as an excuse to clamp down on all of its opponents.

Posted by: ninel | Jan 1 2018 17:53 utc | 74

ninel 76

We forget Franco did the same thing in Spain , not only to the 'left' but to his own more sincere Fascists who were brutally suppressed once he'd won the civil war !

Posted by: ashley albanese | Jan 1 2018 18:24 utc | 75

@ ninel with the position and information about Iran

Do you understand that Iran is one of the very few countries that is not under control of global private finance? Do you believe in usury?

I am not saying that your concerns are not valid but I put them within a different context. How would Iran leadership respond if global finance was a public utility and did not include usury?

Posted by: psychohistorian | Jan 1 2018 18:28 utc | 76

@76 ninel quote "yet because of outside meddling and sanctions AND domestic mismanagement and incompetence"

thanks ninel.. you got the order and priority of it in that sentence there... so, is it your suggestion that in order to deal with the later, you ignore the former? just curious, because i can tell you for a fact the outside meddling and sanctions are looking for any opening they can get to try to turn iran into what they have done in iraq, libya, syria and ukraine.. is that what you want? that is what the powerful outside forces are aiming for and they are a much stronger force the the domestic mismanagement and incompetent elements of iran that you appear to want to overthrow... you overthrow the gov't and replace it with those gunning to do in iran and it will be a whole lot much worse.. is that what you want to see?

Posted by: james | Jan 1 2018 18:32 utc | 77

Anyway, Iran anti-Rouhani hardliners have come out now in support of people's right to protest.

One really should think hard about whom one does support. If I remember right Tudeh forgot to do this in 1979 which led us to where we are today.

So everybody in the West agrees now with Iranian hardliners that Iranians have a right to protest against Rouhani and Khamenei.

Whilst the opposition networks with contacts to the West got burned for another decade.

Next step I suppose is a hardline demonstration in full force.

Posted by: somebody | Jan 1 2018 18:34 utc | 78

@Julian | Jan 1, 2018 4:23:00 AM | 60

If this anonymous D'Andrea character is so odious and responsible for stirring up trouble for decades all around the place, why is he still alive, and why hasn't he been dealt with?!?!?

No idea, may be is that he is too slippery...Anyway, it seems that he has even detractors amongst his peers who find his methods quite expeditive...

Who is the new head of the Central Intelligence Agency of the United States in Iran?

Michael D'Andrea: He is a counterterrorism expert and agent of the CIA, who joined the intelligence service in 1979; was born in Florida, United States.

Mr. Mike D'Andrea converted to Islam. In his service record he appears as the organizer of the torture conditioning program and creator of the secret prison in Salt Pit - in Afghanistan - where he supervised the experiments to which Abu Zubeydah, Abd al-Rahim al Nashiri and Khalid Sheikh Mohammed (Supposed intellectual authors of 9/11) were submitted.

Mike D'Andrea, has a reputation for being extremely intelligent and violent, and inspired the character designated as "The Wolf" in the American film Zero Dark Thirty.

In 2006, agent Michael D'Andrea, initiated the US program of killer drones.

In 2008, Mike D'Andrea organized the assassination, in Damascus, of Hezbollah's military chief Imad Mugniyeh. He also directed until the year 2015 the US program of killer drones.

I want to raise the following questions: What motivates a devout follower of Muhammad to be the organizer of the conditioning program through torture and creator of the secret prison of Salt Pit - in Afghanistan?
What motivates a CIA agent to be the brain that devised the US killer drones program?

Patriotism ?, Pride?

NO ... Western intelligence services have interests and objectives, to achieve those interests and objectives Western intelligence services have no scruples.(..)

(...)these practices of the CIA: they are very similar to the practices of the Death Caravans and the practices of the School of Mechanics of the Navy during the Videla dictatorship in Argentina in the 70s (...)

(...)"False flag" operations of the CIA in Iran

The attacks last Wednesday (07-06-17) in Tehran, which caused 17 dead and were claimed by the Islamic State group, these attacks against Parliament and the mausoleum of the Imam Khomeini in Tehran can be the pretext the Western powers seek to start a new conflict in the Persian Gulf, within the framework of pragmatism in international relations: the Qatar Monarchy seeks political and military support in the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran: I want to point out that the Monarchy of Qatar is Sunni while the majority of the population of this State of the Persian Gulf is Shia, and the other monarchies of the Persian Gulf seek the isolation of Qatar, mainly Saudi Arabia, supposedly for the support of Qatar to the terrorist group Islamic State, but the real reason for the conflict is the Iran-Qatar alliance.

To conclude my article ... I want to quote from this verse of the Koran: "If someone kills a person, it would be as if he killed all humanity: and if someone saves a life, it would be as if he had saved the life of all mankind" ( Holy Quran 5:32)

What motivates a man like Michael D'Andrea? Hypocrisy.....

Posted by: elsi | Jan 1 2018 19:25 utc | 79

@76 Ninel, most here agree there are grievances from the Iranian people that need to be addressed.
However, the issue at hand being discussed by b and commenters is the hijacking of that popular energy into a movement with external motives. Those need to other to achieve their aim. If peaceful protests cant channel enough momentum then violence is needed. A sad but predictable case in point:

Posted by: Lozion | Jan 1 2018 19:41 utc | 80

Another probable CIA tool reporting from Texas about "300.000 people demonstrating in Iran in favour of democracy", linking images from 2011 Bahrein...Shame on you!
"Se atrapa antes a un mentiroso que a un cojo", that she says my mom....

More than 11K retweets, it does not matter if it's 2011 in Bahrain. And this way they are weaving manipulation and propaganda. #IranProtest

Posted by: elsi | Jan 1 2018 19:41 utc | 81

@elsi | Jan 1, 2018 2:41:36 PM | 83

I recall very well that before the Syrian invasion by foreign thugs started, the MSM were flooded by these images belonging to other events by saying they were filmed/photographed in Syria. They hijacked the whole comments section of papers like SpanishEl País with multiple elongated photos and videos of carnages and crowded demosntrations that were fake montages or taken at another locations, even at some allied countries of the "US led coalition", where people was claiming for democracy. It was just when I started my volunteer activism, btw, could not cop with so much scoundrelism...the more having been in Syria some years before and having witnessing with my very eyes such prosperous and promising environment...

Posted by: elsi | Jan 1 2018 19:51 utc | 82

julian / elsi - "D'Andrea character" could be a completely fictitious construct for all we know.. i doubt the name is real..

@84 elsi.. as i think i said earlier on this thread - iranian version of the syrian white helmets with strong funding from the usa/uk is already in place, of that i am quite sure... but really - twitter - what a cess pool.. i guess that is why trump likes it..

Posted by: james | Jan 1 2018 20:44 utc | 83

From the looks of Ninel's comment @ 74, I'd say we have here the kind of trolling Gish-galloping similar to what Luke Daniel Harding engaged in during his interview by Aaron Mate for Real Clear News. You know, the one where Mate took Harding's comments one by one and demolished his interviewee.

To all MoA regulars: don't engage with the troll.

Posted by: Jen | Jan 1 2018 21:05 utc | 84

Ninel, I have dear friends who are Iranians, including a few who were part of the Revolution of 1978/79. One woman whom I dearly love had been arrested by SAVAK at age 16, and held in prison for 3 years. Later, she was released and was active in the Revolution. Then, she was again arrested and imprisoned by the Islamic Republic for an additional 6 years.

So I have a fair sense of what’s really happening in Iran. I do not doubt that young Neda was murdered. And if you watched that video, you know that it was taken and posted by protesters, so if you feel it is a dubious source, well, the you’re supporting my contention.

I cannot look at that video and see it as anything but a staged event.

Feel free to enlighten me in how it came to be that the young lady had no blood on her face until the man sticks his hand up to her face. And then how each time he does that again, suddenly prodigious amounts of new blood appear. Also, please explain why, once great streams of blood spring forward, none of them ever continue to bleed more once the man’s hand is removed.

If you know anything about CIA/Soros “Color Revolutions,” then you know that they do not invent opposition groups. They infiltrate, exaggerate and attempt to steer genuine “grass roots” opposition. And those who oppose the targeted “regime” often have very legitimate grievances. Certainly, my dear friends had and have every reason to oppose actions of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

And at the same time, Hillary Clinton and the US State Department have bragged about their role in the “Green Revolution.” Just as they bragged about their role in the Honduran coup earlier the same year, and in the “Arab Spring” and on and on and on.

So, again. Please provide me with a medically plausible explanation for the appearance of blood in that video.

Posted by: Daniel | Jan 1 2018 21:36 utc | 85

Thanks, frances. I do read Loman on occasion. I hope others here check him out, too.

Posted by: Daniel | Jan 1 2018 21:50 utc | 86

@ 78

"Do you understand that Iran is one of the very few countries that is not under control of global private finance? Do you believe in usury?"

This country you call 'Iran' is divided along CLASS lines. The working class in Iran has interests that are diametrically opposed to those of their employers and the state apparatus which frequently enforces the rights of Iranian capital over Iranian labour. Any cursory knowledge of trade union and workers' struggles in Iran, which have ZERO connection to the outside world, would make it abundantly clear whose side the Iranian government is on. Are Iranian workers protesting for higher or unpaid wages and better working conditions and unemployment insurance 'enemies of God'? Even the Iranian authorities have trouble associating their demands with US/Israeli conspiracies so they are forced to invoke the language of religion. So, knowing this, you must decide whose side you are on? The working masses of Iran or the Iranian government? If you accept the conflict between the two and side with the workers, it is still possible to be against foreign intervention and imperialism. In other words, it is possible to be against both DOMESTIC and INTERNATIONAL OPPRESSION just as some communists (Trotsky for example) fought against both Stalinism and foreign capitalist powers.

To make sense of why the US and other powers frequently invade and destroy so called 'sovereign' nations you must understand a few things: one is those nations are not sovereign in the sense that people living in those countries democratically control their own affairs and receive an equitable share of the social product. No, many of those countries were and are governed through force (rather than through 'ideas' or fiction such as 'democracy' and 'liberty' as in the Western bourgeois states) by dictators and authoritative regimes which want to control the conditions of accumulation within their own boundaries, that is, they do not want other countries and corporations to appropriate capital and funds that their elite classes can appropriate for themselves. All those countries that were invaded and destroyed, including Yugoslavia, Libya, Syria, East Timore did not 'open' up to global capital corporations and therefore were forcefully invaded and their labour force and resources were open to private ownership by foreign companies. In Iran, the revolutionary guards and the mullahs which have connections to them, as well as some other major Iranian companies, want to appropriate the surplus for themselves, and keep the 'economy closed'.

Posted by: ninel | Jan 1 2018 21:54 utc | 87

@ 82 Lozion

The blog post and some commentators are guilty of labeling genuine grass roots movements against the Iranian government as 'US/Mossad/Zionist' conspiracies. This is a direct insult to thousands of Iranian protesters over the years who risked their lives to speak out against tyranny. Many have been killed, jailed and tortured since 1979.

In the post, b calls the Green Movement a CIA colour revolution. This is the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard. Yes outside powers will always try to use those movements for their own purposes, but to claim that it was inspired by the CIA and other countries is pure non sense. There has been resistance to the mullahs and revolutionary guards since the early days of the 1979 revolution. You may want to actually consult some books written by scholars on the subject before speculating on issues that some of you clearly do not know much about.

Posted by: ninel | Jan 1 2018 22:05 utc | 88

Jen @ 86

You can't address any of my points, instead you revert to name calling? Reminds me of anti-zionist criticisms being labelled as anti-semitism. Why don't you actually respond to some of my points?

Posted by: ninel | Jan 1 2018 22:08 utc | 89

@ Daniel 87

You seem to be contradicting yourself. In your previous post (#50) you suggested Neda's murder was staged and fake. You wrote: "Yep. One can actually see the moments when a man apparently squirts some fake blood on her face."

Now you are saying:

"I do not doubt that young Neda was murdered. And if you watched that video, you know that it was taken and posted by protesters, so if you feel it is a dubious source, well, the you’re supporting my contention."

I never doubted that it was fake. You did. I was referring to dubious sources that denied that it was real.

You contradicted yourself YET again when you go on to write: "I cannot look at that video and see it as anything but a staged event."

So you don't doubt that Neda was murdered, but you see it as a staged event? The crowd of protesters actually got their hands on the killer (a pro government militiaman part of the basij) and took his identification (his name is Abbas Kargar Javid).

On the one hand you admit your "dear friends had and have every reason to oppose actions of the Islamic Republic of Iran" yet you dismiss them and focus on outside powers. Who are you or any of the other commentators to tell Iranians what to do? They can and have opposed both domestic and outside oppression. Just because you have a bone to pick with the US and other powers, does not mean Iranians will gladly side with the Iranian mullahs because they are the lesser of two evils. No, Iranians have been fighting against both their governments and outside powers for almost a century now.

Posted by: ninel | Jan 1 2018 22:18 utc | 90

you folks should stop bullying ninel she is a here ho of hebrew history
like batbera lener spector rita katz of site intel group benji nuttyahoo and glorious beauty golda myears.
shame on you goy nazis and new hitlers.

Posted by: rabbi hugo grim | Jan 1 2018 22:33 utc | 91

The Green movement resembled color revolutions a lot, including the logo marketing, the color, the symbolic death of a beautiful woman, the rejection of democratic elections.

This here is the BBC interview with the doctor who witnessed her death

Dr Hejazi said he first thought the gunshot had come from a rooftop.

But later he saw protesters grab an armed man on a motorcycle.

"People shouted 'we got him, we got him'. They disarmed him and took out his identity card which showed he was a Basij member. People were furious and he was shouting, 'I didn't want to kill her'.

"People didn't know what do to do with him so they let him go. But they took his identity card. There are people there who know who he is. Some people were also taking photos of him."

So whoever. But it was not done in the confusion of a clash and a beautiful woman had been picked.

Back to what is going on in Tehran now - reporters/analysts are beginning to sound stunned the way they were after Trump's election.

@GissouNia The far more plausible explanation is that most of the folks making those comments are Tehran centric and deal in certain socio-economic circles and therefore just don't have access. That includes media inside the country.

Not everything revolves around Tehran and the middle / upper class. Just like in the US, where media came to be dominated by folks who graduated from Ivy League institutions and were from urban centers there is a similar context when it comes to analysis /

I spent 6 yrs documenting the treatment of marginalized communities in Iran, whether those groupings were based on ethnicity (Kurds, Arabs, Baluch, Lors), religion (Bahais, Christian converts) or socio-economic factors (alleged drug traffickers subject to the death penalty)

Cambridge Analytica?

Posted by: somebody | Jan 1 2018 22:36 utc | 92

@ninel | Jan 1, 2018 5:18:36 PM | 92

Whatever hint of truth may have your testimony and version of events ( we have realized what influences lead you to oppose the current governemnt in Iran, when you mentioned Trotsky...), collides with the fact that this government was democratically elected by the majority of the Iranian population and that the protests are led by a minority of people which in a curious timing coordianted with foreign powers and well organized twitter and social media campaign to try to overthrown a legitimate government the same way we witnessed in Syria.

This is the same method that was tried during the Catalonian "Unilateral Declaration of Independence", which followed the Iraqi Kurdish "Unilateral Declaration of Independence" ( which could well be a general rehearsal to what then followed, the "Unilateral Declaration" of Jerusalem as Israel capital ), where a minority of the population with wide support from various foreign agents, including some from the European far-right, tried to take over and decide about the sovereignity and future of the whole Catalonian Autonomous Community, and even the whole of Spain, passing over the Spanish Constitution which, with all its faults, Catalan "independentist leaders", some self-appointed by their own parties, like Puigdemont, have no mandate from anybody to change by themselves without consultation of the rest of the country.

This is why, in this context, we are witnessing the "Unilateral Declaration" of Iran as "Neoliberal Vassal Republic" of the US and Israel in front of our very eyes.

Trotskyite forces are those infiltrating and dismantling the left all over Europe and the rest of the world. They were who supported Lybian and Syrian invasion and destruction, as well as Catalonian UDI....

Posted by: elsi | Jan 1 2018 22:56 utc | 93

@90 Linel, do not put words in my mouth. I did acknowledge the protests are justified but to ignore the potential for destabilisation from foreign hands for the reasons you yourself described in your answer to PH is desingeneous to say the least. Fortunately, what b proposes in his analysis should be infirmed or confirmed in the coming days. Meanwhile, condescencion wont lead you far on this board but what will are arguments, sources & insight..

Posted by: Lozion | Jan 1 2018 23:08 utc | 94

@ ninel with their lesser of evils response

From what I understand of your response you seem to favor being under the God of Mammon religion instead of the God of Islam. Personally I despise both and want our species top evolve beyond private finance to public finance. You just seem to think that the grass is greener on the other side of the fence.

Oh, and do you like usury? You didn't answer my question but it seems the answer is yes, you do.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Jan 1 2018 23:32 utc | 95

Lozion, mentioning the 'popular energy' of discontent among the Iranian population and falling short of acknowledging why it is that many are fed up with the theocracy, just as many people in the world are fed up with liberal bourgeois democracy deserves some more attention and that is what I tried to do. The Iranian government routinely crushes all and any dissent on the excuse that 'foreign powers' are involved. I mentioned trade union economic struggles which are repressed because they are 'against the will of God'. Rubbish upon stilts!

If the Iranian government was wise, it would grant basic civil and political liberties, that is, control people through ideas and illusions of freedom and democracy, like many advanced capitalist states do (one of Marx's greatest insights was to show how in pre capitalist modes of production such as feudalism, direct force was used to keep the population in check but in capitalist societies, ideas are used to control people, hence his saying the chains of the mind are harder to break than the chains of the body. This idea was developed further by Lenin and Gramsci a la 'hegemony').

We should ask ourselves, then, why the Iranian government doesn't give less space to foreign powers to meddle by granting greater freedoms to the people which would not really threaten the government. Make the hijab voluntary, do away with prohibition and legalise abortions, ban child marriages and polygamy and so on.

Posted by: ninel | Jan 1 2018 23:37 utc | 96

So the message to freedom loving Iranians is clear: do not protest, either violently or peacefully, because your grievances will be used against you by other countries. Stay in your miserable condition because your government is one of the few that has not been overthrown by greedy capitalist pigs. Instead, let the mullahs and revolutionary guards corps and domestic capitalists exploit your people for profits because to be oppressed by your own is better than to be exploited by others.

Forget the absence of basic political and civil liberties, the falling standard of living, growing depression and suicide, declining birth rate, environmental disasters and the like, because the alternative is much much worse.

I understand many of you are not making this argument, but you must take a clear stance regarding Iranian people's relationship with their government which is not a harmonious one. Heed my words, this government will not last just like many other liberal bourgeois governments will not either but they have the economy and ideology to survive much longer than the IRI which rules through direct force.

Posted by: ninel | Jan 1 2018 23:44 utc | 97

Pardon me if someone's brought this up already, but the image in this post is from the 2009 counter-protest. My first thought was that it was a new one of the backlash from the latest protests, but so many news outlets everywhere are cheating with their imagery nowadays that I have to reverse image search when I see potentially important ones. Just wanted to be sure you knew, and thanks for your excellent posts, b.

Posted by: nines | Jan 1 2018 23:44 utc | 98

@ psychohistorian 97

Do you always try to discredit people's arguments through name calling and the like? Do you have an infantile disorder or something? You can't reply to any of my specific points and examples, so you engage in childish behaviour.

Why don't you go read all the volumes of Capital and then come back and we can have a serious conversation about such concepts as value, money, capital, wealth, etc.

Posted by: ninel | Jan 1 2018 23:47 utc | 99

Posted by: ninel | Jan 1, 2018 6:44:04 PM | 99

I would say think about what you are doing, how you are doing it and who will profit. Also, try to convince people if you are not in the majority.

Posted by: somebody | Jan 1 2018 23:48 utc | 100

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