Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
January 02, 2018

Iran - Few Protests - Some Riots - U.S. Prepares The Next Phase

Updated below:

The riots and protests in Iran continue for a 6th day. While "western" media claim that the protests are growing I see no evidence for that in the various videos that appear online. The legitimate protests over price rises, failing private banks and against the new neoliberal austerity budget of President Rohani were hijacked early on by rioting gangs. These are obviously coordinated from the outside of the country through various internet applications, especially Telegram and Instagram:

Amad News, a channel on Telegram, appears to have played a pivotal role in the wave of protests. Reportedly administered by exiled journalist Rohollah Zam — a son of a senior Reformist cleric said to have escaped the country after being accused of having links with foreign intelligence agencies ...

Blocking the specific control channels proved to be insufficient:

Special software used to circumvent the government filters could still be downloaded easily. And on Monday, as on other days, there were calls for protests online and on foreign-based Persian-language satellite channels.

The blockage of the internet applications was lifted today.

The original protests over economic issues seem to have died down after President Rouhani confirmed the right to protest, conceded economic problems and promised to take them on. Indeed there are only few new videos of genuine protest marches but an avalanche of videos of rioting, arson and tussling with police forces. The size of the protests are in a few hundred people or less. Counter demonstrations, expressing loyalty for the republic (not noted in "western" media), are bigger in size than the anti-government protests. Since December 28 protests and riots have occurred in a total of 66 cities by now, but only about 30 have been taking place each night. This might point to some planning behind the events. A daily switching of venues might be intended to prevent police preparations.

The groups of rioters are between 30 and 80 people in size with a some bystanders milling around. They seem to follow a flash mob strategy appearing here and there and to vanish again when police appears in force. In some cities rioters attacked police stations, military posts and were even stealing firetrucks. Some of the rioters are evidently trying to get their hands on weapons.

Altogether only a few thousand people, overwhelmingly male youth, seem to be involved. Thousands protest in Israel each week against the corruption of Prime Minister Netanyahoo. On New-Years-Eve more than 1,000 cars in France were set alight by arsonists. None of this is front page news but a few dozen riots in Iran get elevated to a "revolution".

The total death toll of the "peaceful protests" is now some 21 of which (by my count) at least five were policemen killed in attacks by "protesters" and two unrelated civilians who were run over and killed by rioters driving a stolen firetruck. Six rioters were killed when they tried to attack a police station in the town of Qahderijan. The governor there claimed that the attackers were armed with guns.

The same faking of pictures of large demonstrations and "evidence" of government brutality that we have seen with regard to the war on Syria is taking place with Iran. Videos of demonstrations from Argentine and Bahrain are used to claim large demonstrations in Iran. A tweet with the Bahrain video by a "journalist" who claimed it was in Iran has received more than 17,000 re-tweets. Videos from Spain or even movie scenes are purported to show police violence in Iran. A video of a man lying on his back and being cared for is once claimed to show that he has been shot by police while at the same time another propagandists claims that the man had a cardiac arrest after police used a taser on him. There are no signs of wounds or other trauma. The dude probably just passed out.

The terrorist group MEK (NCRI, MKO) "leaked" fake protocols of an alleged government meeting which it claims shows panic over the protests. Allegedly the government fears the leader of the MEK, Marjam Rajavi. The MEK has paid large sums to get support from politicians, including John McCain in Washington and elsewhere. During the Iraq-Iran war it fought against Iran on the side of Iraq. After the U.S. invaded Iraq the MEK was held in special camps under U.S. control. According to a 2012 Seymour Hersh report the U.S. military trained MEK fighters in the U.S. in sabotage and insurgency technics. These people are deeply hated in Iran but feared they are not. Their early engagement in the "protests" via their website and propaganda ops in Iran may point to deeper role in the riots.

The usual neoconservatives in the U.S. media are arguing for "more help" for the "Iranian people". The help they want to offer is designed to worsen their economic situation.

I earlier argued that the larger plan of the instigators of these riots is not aimed at winning a violent "regime change" conflict, but at causing a reaction by the Iranian government which can then be used to press especially Europeans to again isolate Iran. This plan is now confirmed by an op-ed in the Washington Post. Michael Singh of the Zionist lobby in Washington writes:

If the regime resorts to violence anyway, the international response should focus on diplomatic isolation. European and Asian states should reduce their diplomatic ties with Iran and downgrade Iran’s participation in international forums. Sanctions may also have a role ...

Unsurprisingly the neoconned WaPo editors are fully in sync with the lobby:

European leaders, who have been far more cautious, should speak up. ... On Sunday [President Rohani of Iran] recognized that the demonstrators had legitimate grievances and nominally accepted their right to protest. The Trump administration and other Western governments should aim to hold him to those words through diplomacy and the threat of sanctions in the event of more bloodshed.

The rioting at the current level is in no way endangering the Iranian republic. Should some rioters acquire weapons the intensity might change a bit. But unless they receive material and personal support from the outside, like it happened in Syria, the situation will soon calm down. The people of Iran are against such violence and the government has yet to use its manifold capabilities.

I had documented in earlier posts that the Trump administration, in tight co-operations with Israel, long prepared for an intensification of a conflict with Iran. Half a year ago the CIA set up a special office with a high level Iran hawk leading the charge. Last month Trump named another Iran hawk to lead the State Department Middle East section.

Since the Iranian people successfully achieved "regime change" in 1979 the U.S. and Britain have had an adversarial policy against Iran. It has ebbed and flowed in intensity but never changed. Under Trump we will see a rapid increase of hostile actions. The administration just called for a UN emergency session about the situation. That is a laughable move when one considers the size of daily murder the U.S. and its allies commit in Yemen, Syria and Palestine. But the operation that unfolds now is likely just a small part of a larger anti-Iran strategy that has yet to become visible.

Update (Jan 3, 01:00am EST)

I just checked various internet resources for two hours to find new videos of protests/riots of January 2 to 3. There were just a handful and none of them was remarkable. Some short clips of loud screaming of small crowds and light bashing with riot police. The protests and riots are obviously dying down.

This map is by HRA_news a Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA). It says "There were protests in at least 11 cities in #Iran on the sixth day".


Eleven cities is less than half than the thirty cities with protests/riots that were counted yesterday.

Posted by b on January 2, 2018 at 19:15 UTC | Permalink

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@ somebody 179

Tens of millions of people. Germany and Japan, like Iran, have relatively large populations. Although you are right to suggest that those countries are led by socially progressive governments.

Posted by: ninel | Jan 4 2018 17:14 utc | 201

@ dh 191

Please remind me exactly when and where I was being pro US? Because I'm criticising the IRI? Again, your behaviour and way of reasoning resembles that of the IRI's -- it routinely discredits and even imprisons and tortures all its critics by labelling them traitors or agents or in the case of working class people who have not received their wages or wish to organise and peacefully protest or strike 'enemies of god'. Of course there were and are critics of the regime (e.g. Mehdi Bazargan, Bani Sadr, Montazeri who spoke out against the mass executions in the 1980s or more recently Mousavi, Kherroubi and other refomists) but they were privileged to be part of the establishment and so spared imprisonment and torture. You really ought to read Soroush's letter to Khameini. I posted a link to it.

Posted by: ninel | Jan 4 2018 17:20 utc | 202

@ Christian Chuba 194

Yes and those are laws and practices that need to be changed as well (

In the case of Iran, the parliament's attempt to lower the age to 9 in 2012, despite being informed about the rising incidence of child brides in the country, is truly alarming. Should I apologise for speaking out on behalf of innocent children who are deprived of a future because of their personal circumstances and the laws of their enlightened leaders?

Posted by: ninel | Jan 4 2018 17:24 utc | 203

@197 It's your tone more than anything I think. You seem to see the US as the great arbiter with an obligation to help oppressed people everywhere. Yes that has been a tenet of American thinking but there are many Americans who don't believe in it. Why should the average American give a damn about Iran? Do Iranians worry about the welfare of Americans?

And what makes you think I didn't read Soroush's letter?

Posted by: dh | Jan 4 2018 17:25 utc | 204

>>>> Anonymous | Jan 4, 2018 11:46:11 AM | 188

Mossad Sells U.S. on Iran Regime Change Plan

Mossad, just like the CIA really ain't what it used to be. That the Mossad plan was revealed by Wikileaks a couple of years later really says it all. It wouldn't surprise me in the slightest if this latest western fuck up was another Javanka/MbS/MbZ/Netanyahu "plan" just like their "plan" against Hezbollah a few weeks back. Iran has nothing to worry about and the secret police can focus on hunting down ninel although they might have problems getting to Cheltenham anytime soon.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Jan 4 2018 17:26 utc | 205

@ somebody 193

I have no doubt that foreign forces were involved. But this fails to explain why the Rouhani administration and reformists have not condemned the protests? The democratically elected leader of the country called the protests an opportunity and not a threat.

Also, these allegations are coming from an institution that is not exactly popular in the country or known for its honesty. This is the same institution that was responsible for the execution of thousands of prisoners in the 1980s, the imprisonment of students who protested in 1999, and for routinely imprisoning critics and activists and union members as well as students who refuse to work with the security apparatus (Omid Kokabee).

Posted by: ninel | Jan 4 2018 17:29 utc | 206

@ dh 199

No where did I say anything about the US government or American people doing anything about Iran. In fact, the reformists of Iran are pretty united in their stance toward support from the outside. They do not want Americans or other governments to get politically involved although some groups or factions within the reformist camp as well as segments of the population might actually appreciate the media coverage and condemnation from other countries (except the usual suspects -- US, UK, Saudi, Israel). I apologise for the tone. It comes off as patronising and rude. I am only making the point that the world is not so black and white, you do not have to adopt a pro-American / anti-Iran or anti-American / pro-Iran stance. The world's working classes all live under governments that are repressive, some way more than others, and in general they live in a system that is not to their benefit, one that is made for and by the bourgeoisie who struggle against each other but are firmly united in their opposition to working people taking control of their lives.

Posted by: ninel | Jan 4 2018 17:35 utc | 207

I should probably add and acknowledge that the Iranian people and freedom loving human beings everywhere would appreciate the attention and support that many of you here, including b, have given them.

Posted by: ninel | Jan 4 2018 17:39 utc | 208

Posted by: ninel | Jan 4, 2018 12:14:58 PM | 196

No. You were mentioning the two countries that had been defeated in WW2 and were reconstructed by the US.

Why not be open that that is the plan minus the reconstruction - remember Iraq?

Posted by: somebody | Jan 4 2018 17:43 utc | 209

@202 Well that sounded a little less evangelical. Thank you.

I'm glad to hear that Iranian reformists don't want any outside help. Unfortunately that doesn't explain the protest signs being in English or the blizzard of pro-reform propaganda from the MSM.

Posted by: dh | Jan 4 2018 17:45 utc | 210


Thanks for the your point on new posters who appear to post only when the AngloZionist Empire is actively trying to break apart another country for economic gain.

Those "trolls" can best be clinically described as suffering from cognitive partitioning. They ignore the many faults of the AngloZionist Empire while attacking a country that resists submission to the empire. Gilad Atzmon has written extensively about this cultural blindness in his analysis of Israeli society.

It is truly a shame that such immature posting occurs when there are larger issues tearing most nations apart. See "Donut Economics" by Kate Raworth and the earlier works of the Club of Rome Study by Flowers

I hope this helps clear the air.

Posted by: Krollchem | Jan 4 2018 17:46 utc | 211

#2 sudski- Is your LYNDA REALLY DISASTER ???????

Posted by: sejmon | Jan 4 2018 17:50 utc | 212

@203 Don't expect to see alt-right ninjas running through the streets of LA smashing windows any time soon.

Posted by: dh | Jan 4 2018 18:01 utc | 213

I think b and now also a guest author at SST have mentioned the US/Israeli agreement on 'countering Iran' in relation to the current protests/riots.

An interesting article at The Conversation. US/UK/France trained 'revolutionaries' from Syria trying to help things along
....Then there’s the matter of Syria. Since the beginning of the Syrian uprisings in 2011, Ahwazi Arab Iranians have stood in solidarity with their counterparts on the Syrian streets, while Syrian pro-democracy protesters have waved the Ahwaz flag in their protests against Bashar al-Assad’s regime. Small wonder then that today’s Syrian anti-regime revolutionaries and activists are standing in solidarity with the Iranian protests.

Abdelaziz al-Hamza, a Syrian pro-democracy activist from Raqqa and active member of the group Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently, advised the Iranian protesters not to reveal their identity, not to carry any ID documentation, and to use removable memory cards in the devices they use to document the protests. He also strongly advised them to use nicknames for their Facebook, Twitter and YouTube accounts, and to communicate via encrypted apps.

Many Syrian opposition activists hope that the Iranian protests will start a domino effect that eventually affects Iranian foreign policy towards Syria. In recent years, the Iranian government has spent billions of dollars annually supporting the repressive Syrian regime. Iran’s powerful military chief, General Qasem Soleimani, has been leading the Iranian military operation inside Syria. If the current protests lead to some sort of revolutionary change, Iran’s strong financial and military support to active actors in the Syrian war – among them Hezbollah and the Assad regime’s army – could suddenly shrivel up. This will also have major implications for Arab countries where Iran is playing a military role, not least Yemen.

If anything is to be learned from the Syrian uprisings, it’s that protests such as these can take on a life of their own in ways no one anticipated. There is a significant chance that the Iranian regime will be every bit as brutal in its crackdown as the Assad regime. Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has blamed the protests on a foreign conspiracy; hundreds of protesters have been arrested, and the head of Iran’s Revolutionary Court warned that some will receive death sentences....

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Jan 4 2018 18:09 utc | 214


i think i suggested that the raison d'etre of prohibition of alcohol in Iran is because of its Islamic history, and as alcohol is toxic to human cells i'd even say there must be some fundamental wisdom in there.

yeah, i know, drugs are everywhere, but if you look at the numbers you'll see that alcohol consumption in Muslim countries is far, far lower than in western countries where it's available and glorified everywhere 24/7, and even a modicum of research will reveal the extent of the immediate and lasting damage this little habit generates.

yes, i do drink, quite moderately, and i also defend the legalization of all drugs, but i also understand that when habits are glorified they become obsessive and, as such, pernicious...

...and my idea of reform in Iran is certainly not to replicate western culture.

Posted by: john | Jan 4 2018 18:17 utc | 215

@210 Just a side note....Wine has an interesting Persian connection. None other than Omar Khayyam used to enjoy the effects.

Posted by: dh | Jan 4 2018 18:29 utc | 216

@ Krollchem 206

"They ignore the many faults of the AngloZionist Empire while attacking a country that resists submission to the empire."

The overwhelming majority of Iranians (and people in the world) are against other countries interfering in their affairs, given the track record of invasions and wars carried out by the great powers. But if you use a class analysis, this idea of 'country resisting submission' becomes somewhat problematic. It is perfectly reasonable for the ruling class of Iran to maintain its hold on the process of accumulation within the country. You have little idea how much wealth the clerics, military figures and other individuals associated with the IRI have accumulated. Very similar to the concentration of wealth in the hands of the few in the US and other countries. Hence the class struggle between ruling classes and between ruling classes and subordinate classes. You seem to live in a world of black and white, and fail to see that in reality, the world is not so simple, that different classes, groups and genders have different interests, on the basis of which struggle occurs. The Iranian regime fights against the 'Empire' for its own survival. It has the support of many Iranians who subscribe to its ideology just as in the US many Americans (mistakenly) subscribe to the ideology of the establishment. This doesn't mean the ruling class has the interests of the subordinate classes at heart. I understand from your perspective and others, who are outraged by the atrocities committed by the US and its allies, that a country like Iran, which has survived and fought against regional and Western aggressive states for many decades, may seem like a hero. But it is not. It is perfectly fine to side with the IRI in certain struggles and wars. But once you fail to consider the interests and needs of the population at large, and all the domestic problems facing Iran, then my friend you become an apologist to oppression.

In other news, here's a link to a short RT segment on western media bias vis-a-vis Iran and Israel/Honduras

Posted by: ninel | Jan 4 2018 18:32 utc | 217


yeah, tell me about it, i live in Italy.

Posted by: john | Jan 4 2018 18:44 utc | 218

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Jan 4, 2018 1:09:34 PM | 209

Of course that was the strategy. To panic the Iranian government into an indiscriminate clampdown and end Rouhani's government as the acceptable face of Tehran Europe can do business with.

Iran hardliners could not help but smile as this were their protests and their constituency to begin with.

Obviously the US does everything to make Rouhani's policy impossible.

You'd think the US were shooting themselves in the foot as Iranian hardliners will continue to fight in Syria, support Hezbollah and Gaza factions.

But the US would have a consolidated "axis of evil" to spend taxpayer's money on fighting/enabling Iran's hardliners to do the same for fighting satan. The countries with the highest per capita spending of the world are Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Israel and the United States in that order. Iran does not come close.

Posted by: somebody | Jan 4 2018 18:45 utc | 219

"Such respect for the people of Iran as they try to take back their corrupt government. You will see great support from the United States at the appropriate time!"

"In the good old days this doesn't happen because they used to treat them very, very rough. And when they protested once, you know, they would not do it again so easily.
In the good old days they'd rip him out of that seat so fast...I'd like to punch him in the face, I'll tell ya. Alright, yeah, get him out. Try not to hurt him. If you do, I'll defend you in court, don't worry about it. I love the old days, you know what they used to do to guys like that when they were in a place like this? They'd be carried out on a stretcher, folks."

What a difference a presidency makes! Hypocritically laughable?

Posted by: ninel | Jan 4 2018 18:50 utc | 220

Turkey's reaction:

Speaking to reporters in the capital Ankara, Mevlut Cavusoglu pointed to two people openly supporting the unrest in Iran: “One of them is Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and the other is the U.S. President Donald Trump.”


Cavusoglu criticized the double standards of certain countries towards the protests, citing how some countries gave their full support to the military coup in Egypt.

“There is praise for them [Egypt] in other countries, but there is criticism towards Iran and the regime there, as well as external intervention,” he said.

About U.S. Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley’s call on Wednesday for a Security Council meeting on the protests, Cavusoglu said the U.S. proposed this because “they are strongly opposed to the Iranian administration."

Posted by: ninel | Jan 4 2018 18:58 utc | 221

ninel@ 212

May I suggest you read the books I mentioned in my post. You seem to be unaware of the world situation and are either a serious idealist or just a propagandist for the AngloZionist Empire.

On second thought, you are likely very young and have not spent a few decades reading about the chaos created by the AngloZionist Empire around the world. Yes there are problems in the Iranian society as here are in all societies. Yet you do not post your concerns in the context of a larger world view. Nor have you posted on any other issue at MOA.

Iranian society is functioning and civil which is more than can be said about countries which have or are experiencing "regime change" such as Yugoslavia (Kosovo), Ukraine, Libya, Syria, Iraq, Honduras, Yemen, etc. Fortunately, the more recent coup attempts in Molvova and Jordan have been suppressed and I would hope that Iran can also.

Iran, unlike the US does not have:
over a million child prostitutes;
million or more gang members;
about 50 million opiate users (see Iran's war against CIA heroin smuggling);
massive alcoholism;
Sex addiction issues;
gambling and sports addictions;

I suggest you count your blessings and troll somewhere else. Take up a sport and relax. I suggest skiing, as Iran has better ski resorts than the US and most of Europe:

Posted by: Krollchem | Jan 4 2018 19:06 utc | 222

K @ 206 said:


"Thanks for the your point on new posters who appear to post only when the AngloZionist Empire is actively trying to break apart another country for economic gain."

Uh, yes.. Same script, different day. For those who have posted here for years, a historical fact, That some folks are paid to be here.

Posted by: ben | Jan 4 2018 19:11 utc | 223

Alexander Mercouris today with companion piece to Sunday's analysis (update): likely outsiders are from Saudi Arabia; considers economic matters re end of subsidies, massive unemployment in youth; overall, relatively few protesters (interesting distinction here vs. large demonstrations), with Saudi Arabia likely the external agents. Again sober, reasonable:

Posted by: Sid2 | Jan 4 2018 19:18 utc | 224

ninel@ 212

I suspect you are part of the twitter storm supporting the Astro-turfed demonstrations in Iran.

Consider reading IRAN PROTEST CRISIS: Everything you need to know

Posted by: Krollchem | Jan 4 2018 19:19 utc | 225

@ 217: I concur..

Posted by: ben | Jan 4 2018 19:20 utc | 226

@ Krollchem 222

I'm a tenured professor; I read and write books for a living. I know the history of Iran (beginning in the Achaemenid empire to the present day) much better than you do. I have already demonstrated my knowledge of Iran in previous posts.

Unfortunately you have some rather pedestrian concepts to make sense of world events (e.g. empires, nation-states, etc). I recommend picking up Marx's four volumes of Capital or Ernest Mandel's two volume 'Marxist Economic theory'. You would be well advised to also disabuse yourself of the notion of 'nation states' (US, UK, etc). The nation state was the political and economic shell of national capital. After the revolutions in France, the US and other countries, the bourgeoisie created the conditions for capital accumulation at the national level. But by the 1980s, there was a second 'bourgeois revolution' (see Gary Teeple 1996 book) albeit at the global level. Globalisation marked the arrival (at the global level) of ‘self-generating capital’ – the transnational corporation, which is free of any national loyalties, controls or interests. Globalisation should not be confused with the mere internationalisation of capital, which implies a world of national capitals and nation states (this is the world Lenin and Bukharin examined in their work on Imperialism). Rather, globalisation marks the supersession by capital of the nation-state as its historically necessary but now redundant social and political framework. This is a process in which the main agents become transnational corporations and all the processes of capital become global in nature, with a specific global framework (e.g. World Bank, International Monetary Fund, World Trade Organization, and other supranational organisations that facilitate accumulation at the global level), and the national economy and its associated boundaries, policies and institutions, become a ‘fetter’. With the coming of globalisation, capital became ‘denationalised’ and required freedom from national intervention and control. In other words, capital no longer has any national allegiance as its interests span the entire world and far exceed national jurisdictions. Transnationals operate in a world economy and possess a ‘global perspective’ in which domestic or national markets are only one area of interest because they are too small for the productive capacity they possess. The transnational corporation has productive and distributive capacities that span the jurisdiction of many nations, which minimise its national character, and cause it to regard national labour, consumer and capital markets with much less significance. Its location and decisions are based on global market factors and not national ones. Its interests are best served by a supranational, rather than a national regulatory framework.

At the heart of the argument lies the notion that as the economy globalises, and the circuity of accumulation transcends national boundaries, the relations of production and the forces of production become global. The economic system outgrows the territorially based nation state, which consequently has much less control over economic outcomes.

Global capital, that is, the big transnationals want 'in' Iran since much of the resources and wealth there is off limits to them; the wealth of the nation is under the control of and being appropriated by the Iranian national ruling class (clergy, IRGC, and other elites). It is a struggle between global capital/ruling class which use the military of US, UK, NATO, etc to advance its interests and Iran's national capitalist class. In Yugoslavia, East Timor, Syria, Libya, Iraq, etc., we witnessed a similar tension as the ruling classes of those countries would not 'open' up to transnationals and so they were targeted. But this doesn't mean the rulers of these countries were 'good' guys. They are countries ruled by a national bourgeois class, not the working class and population at large.

Did you learn something? I hope so…

I'm also well informed about the situation in the US. But I am troubled by the tendency among not only some of you but among many on the left to support dictatorships only because of the fact that they are targeted by the global capitalist powers/ For a very long time, Stalin received the same kind of support vis-a-vis the US.

Posted by: ninel | Jan 4 2018 22:05 utc | 227

It is rather depressing for me to see people on the so-called 'left' be ignorant of, willfully refuse or neglect to carry out a CLASS analysis to make sense of world events. In the place of class, we have cliche ridden phrases like 'AngloZionist Empire'. Yikes.

Posted by: ninel | Jan 4 2018 22:21 utc | 228


Harry @80 has it right: "@ ArioBarzan aka zio-Lenin from previous thread."

Is anyone else here enjoying ninel(Lenin)/ArioBarzan/BB8/Shakesvshav -- it is the same person -- talking to himself by using different handles? Notice how imperturbable his/her tone is becoming over this topic.

Lenin troll, give it up already, your veneer is so transparent...

Posted by: JS | Jan 4 2018 22:33 utc | 229

@229 ArioBarzan, sounds like the handle of a Kordestan kurd, maybe separatist..

Posted by: Lozion | Jan 4 2018 22:50 utc | 230


Im an avid reader of MOA, ZeroHedge etc... and a strong supporter of movement towards a multi polar world and agree with much of what the axis of resistance stands for, but as a young Iranian Im very disappointed in this analysis and the following comments

Look how he/she tries to first gain credibility by stating to be an avid read of MoA & ZH...

Followed up by more multi polar word lies only to reveal his/true agenda (see bolded section above)...

This troll is obsessive-compulsive is his/her devotion his/her ingrained "cause"

Posted by: JS | Jan 4 2018 23:09 utc | 231

Is this what some of you do here, that is. label and accuse people who are not apologists of dictatorships and ruling classes? Do you despise working people so much that you accuse their supporters of treason ? Does it bother you at all that dictators do the same thing which has resulted in the imprisonment, torture and/or death of thousands of people? remember that as visitors and frequent commentators you're representing this site and community (cult?). So you may want to leave a better impression by engaging with the person's arguments rather than ignorantly and childishly pointing fingers. Sad to see such behaviour among so called leftists. I find it amusing how some of you cheer for one national capitalist class (Iran) against the global capitalist elite without even being aware of it. Keep your eyes on the working class my friend.

Posted by: Ninel | Jan 4 2018 23:16 utc | 232

@ 132 psychohistorian
Definitely agree with you, The western system is just a more sophisticated method of manipulation and coercion than the one in Iran,
My criticism of the theocracy in Iran shouldn't be assumed as praise for US's "Democracy" !

Posted by: ArioBarzan | Jan 4 2018 23:22 utc | 233

@169 BB8-JS-Jackrabbit-Lozion (see its real easy for me to do the same thing)

What are you discussing here?
I started commenting on this because the article clearly says the only legitimate reason for Iranian people to protest is the Neo Liberal policies of president Rouhani, I wanted to give many of the other reasons why Iranians are protesting against the Regime.
You are right the issues are internal and we Iranians should try to fix them, and this is what the protesters are trying to do by calling for a referendum to decide whether the majority of Iranians want the constitution amended or not,
At which point did I say I want US and Co to bash Iran? I clearly stated that Us pressure and sanctions not only hurt Iranian people but also give excuse to the regime's oppression,
I truly enjoyed Maria Zakarova's comments regarding Ferguson, US has no credibility in talking about peoples rights in any other country, and this is doubly true for Iranian people who have suffered at the hand of US (as well as IR) for long.

Posted by: ArioBarzan | Jan 4 2018 23:36 utc | 234

@229 @230
And you sound like someone who has their head up their ass,
Nothing that I said was even remotely separatist, In fact if there is a chance of separation anywhere in Iran I would be one of many who would gladly volunteer to fight it, while you would sitting behind your keyboard massaging your ego and confirming your pre held beliefs.

Regardless Ive had it with you ideological drones, I might as well be commenting on MSM, My time is too precious to spend on people who are not here for a real debate or discussion and are only here for name calling,

I mentioned once and Ill say it again, What we write here has no effect on whats going on on the ground, so treat it as a mental exercise, I would love for one of you guys to challenge my points and prove me wrong, but challenge the message not messenger, till now only @peter au has even tried engage what im trying to say rather than calling me names.

Posted by: ArioBarzan | Jan 4 2018 23:45 utc | 235

Krollchem wrote to me:

Consider reading IRAN PROTEST CRISIS: Everything you need to know

The article states: "The elected government's official view, as reported internationally and by Iranian state media, is actually supportive of the legitimate demands of the mainstream protests. They have already announced this to the protesters, and are working at the level of civil society intervention to de-escalate the protests and usher in a series of new policies and programs aimed at ameliorating some of the legitimate concerns...To be clear - the government of Iran is not blaming the legitimate protesters as 'Western agents'. They have said that the protests, correctly, are chiefly related to inflation and other economic related concerns. Rouhani himself has publicly stated that he shares precisely these concerns. "

I had already pointed this out in my previous post:

"Near the end of the France 24 debate (at the 42:00 minute mark) an interesting insight is discovered by the media analyst, namely that the reformist oriented media in Iran following the protests/riots depicted the developments as a positive event. So for example, the Arman newspaper, quoting Rouhani, sees them as 'an opportunity and not a threat'. The etemad newspaper pointed out that the protests lacked leadership and a unified message/platform (it's headline called for dialogue, calm and good management). Another reformist newspaper made the point that hopelessness and despair among sections of the population breed wrecklessness and violence. The reformist oriented newspapers essentially call for the government to listen and understand (which is what Rouhani has been trying to do but he may need popular support and demonstrations to get his way).

The conservative/hardline press condemned the protests/riots as 'foreign influenced' and call for a harsh reaction and crackdown. So it is interesting to take your own views on this matter and see whether they align more with the reformist oriented press in Iran which gives voice to reformists and a large segment of the Iranian population OR the hard line press in Iran which is pretty much a mouth piece of the Supreme leader and the clergy and IRGC."

The article goes on to say:

"Iran is nevertheless still a class society with a wide and growing disparity between income groups. There are Iranian billionaires, private owners of firms and joint stock companies, who while operating within the parameters of Iranian sovereignty, also acquire their economic success on the backs of countless Iranians. Their wealth and stature in Iranian society grew significantly under Rafsanjani's tenure. "

I had also written about this:

"The overwhelming majority of Iranians (and people in the world) are against other countries interfering in their affairs, given the track record of invasions and wars carried out by the great powers. But if you use a class analysis, this idea of 'country resisting submission' becomes somewhat problematic. It is perfectly reasonable for the ruling class of Iran to maintain its hold on the process of accumulation within the country. You have little idea how much wealth the clerics, military figures and other individuals associated with the IRI have accumulated. Very similar to the concentration of wealth in the hands of the few in the US and other countries. Hence the class struggle between ruling classes and between ruling classes and subordinate classes. You seem to live in a world of black and white, and fail to see that in reality, the world is not so simple, that different classes, groups and genders have different interests, on the basis of which struggle occurs. The Iranian regime fights against the 'Empire' for its own survival. It has the support of many Iranians who subscribe to its ideology just as in the US many Americans (mistakenly) subscribe to the ideology of the establishment. This doesn't mean the ruling class has the interests of the subordinate classes at heart. I understand from your perspective and others, who are outraged by the atrocities committed by the US and its allies, that a country like Iran, which has survived and fought against regional and Western aggressive states for many decades, may seem like a hero. But it is not. It is perfectly fine to side with the IRI in certain struggles and wars. But once you fail to consider the interests and needs of the population at large, and all the domestic problems facing Iran, then my friend you become an apologist to oppression."

In fact the absence of a systematic and consistent class analysis in b's posts and many of your comments is one of the most frustrating things for me. You all seem to be stuck in the world of national struggles, that is, wars between nations (and not even national ruling classes!) and the evil side is US et al. The working class, whether in the US or Iran, does not even seem to exist anywhere in your analyses. Many of the wars and conflicts that you are analysing have to do with the working class, to take labour out of the picture is to misunderstand what is happening in the world today. The article does touch on issues of class a little ("And internally, that policy, again, favors the individual rights of owners and bosses against the middling and lower classes") but it suffers from some shortcomings (the author's claim that "In 2009, about 200 protesters were ultimately arrested" is dubious to say the least -- hundreds of Iranians fled the country to escape imprisonment or following release).

Posted by: ninel | Jan 5 2018 0:09 utc | 236

@ dh 216

"Wine has an interesting Persian connection. None other than Omar Khayyam used to enjoy the effects."

Shiraz refers to two types of wine, sometimes incorrectly considered the same. In the modern world, it is a style of Syrah. Historically the name refers to the wine produced around the city of Shiraz in Iran (Persia), known by the 9th century for producing the finest wine from the Near East.

Posted by: ninel | Jan 5 2018 0:15 utc | 237

Trolls are like clowns only less fun. Both employ misdirection.

These trolls have already fired their confetti canon.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jan 5 2018 1:36 utc | 238

@ 237 jackrabbit

Mate you couldn't of said it any better. I bet this guy is sitting in India somewhere. You would be suprised how big the CIA employed troll army is there

Posted by: Deebo | Jan 5 2018 7:48 utc | 239

ninel says:

I'm a tenured professor; I read and write books for a living

well, by the way that your reputation around here seems to be going downhill fast, i'd suggest that you come out of the closet with the titles of your books, that is if they've actually been published, and let's see how the consequences have proclaimed them.

whaddaya say?

i mean, for someone who disdains 'journalistic' crap, for someone who has his head way up the ole ivory tower, you're investing mucho verbiage in the comment section of a fairly obscure blogspot.

Posted by: john | Jan 5 2018 11:09 utc | 240

@ Deebo | Jan 5, 2018 2:48:51 AM | 238
"I bet this guy is sitting in India somewhere. You would be suprised how big the CIA employed troll army is there." - Ok, where is your factual basis for such a claim? Show it please. Here. Now. Unsubstantiated troll accusations are the best tool to poison any meaningful discussion. As we cannot know the background and reality of any poster the only matter we have are his arguments. With those @ninel is ahead at this moment. And those permanent zionist phrases are an insult of my intelligence.

Posted by: Hausmeister | Jan 5 2018 11:15 utc | 241

So old Bob Fisk, in his latest piece, implies western intelligence agencies might be fueling the Iranian protests. It's written in his usual condescending style and he manages, of course, to work in a few digs at Assad and Khameni, but it is interesting that Fisk of all people is mentioning the unmentionable.

Posted by: Temporarily Sane | Jan 6 2018 3:08 utc | 242


I agree with you that leaders and groups opposing US and Western imperialism does not necessarily make them good and enlightened ambassadors for peace and prosperity who are beyond reproach. They are human after all and humans are a very imperfect bunch (to say the least). A also try to avoid hero worshipping powerful leaders. Leaders, even relatively uncorrupted ones, are not saviours who will make everything okay. It is beyond naive to think a few wise men will do away with Euro-American imperialism and a "multi-polar world" will emerge fully-formed from a vat to take its place and we can then just sit back, relax and consume as usual. The term armchair revolutionaries comes to mind.

Something people here and in similar blogs barely talk about is the massive power of global capitalism and how it drives and influences geopolitics and imperialism. This is the elephant in the room. They focus way too much on unproven backroom conspiracies and "the deep state" thereby attributing almost mythical powers to spooks and strategists. It's fine to speculate, because conspiracies do happen, but what disturbs is how many people think they actually know the truth and police others for thought crimes (i.e. someone who doesn't think like them 100%). They really do seem to believe all challengers to their position are CIA plants etc.. That is a self-defeating mix of paranoia, solipsism and ignorance that promotes division and polarization. It plays right into the hands of the establishment PTB.

Back to Iran. While I do not think Rouhani, Khameni et al. are above criticism I am not Iranian and I do not live in Iran and it is not my place to get all moralistic and righteous about happenings there or government corruption etc. Nothing justifies invasion and/or regime change. Even if Assad, say, is as terrible as the Western media makes him out to be (and I do not believe he is) that would not justify the horrors the West and its partners in crime have inflicted on Syria and its people. The West uses altruism and concern for "human rights" as a cover for invading, bombing and destroying countries who not follow the global capitalist pied piper they control. Libya is the perfect showcase of the West's commitment to human rights, democracy and freedom.

Just over 70 years ago Europeans were still slaughtering each other and their global imperial rampage continues to this day under American leadership. These countries have no right to criticize other states for their human rights abuses or meddling in elections or any of that. Talk about firing mortars in glass houses. If they really wanted to help Iranians or Syrians or Libyans they would back the fuck off and stop invading and meddling in their affairs. Do other nations not have a right to develop at their own pace in their own way without Uncle Scam and his poodles sabotaging and blocking them at every turn? If Iran was a US ally like Israel and Saudi Arabia do you think the media and Trump and all the other duplicitous pieces of shit would be tweeting and scribbling about their "solidarity" with the "Iranian people" and moaning about "human rights"?

To sum up, I'm not big on hero worshipping chump heads of state or deifying targets of Western imperial aggression...but I do understand why people who are not Iranian and have no ties to that country are uncomfortable commenting on internal matters there.

Posted by: Temporarily Sane | Jan 6 2018 4:28 utc | 243

@ John

I'm not concerned about my 'reputation' here. I think some of you are misrepresenting your community here by accusing those with sound arguments of being trolls and 'seditionists'. I'm not interested in participating in your cult of anti US pro Iran propaganda. The MEK is very similar in that it takes the exact opposite stance. I'd rather give my support to working people who are being exploited and oppressed by the ruling classes of the world.

@ hausmeister

Thanks for the support, here and in the comment section of the newest thread. You do MOA a service by engaging instead of labelling. Notice my accusers like the mullahs actually responded to many of my criticisms. It's either you're with us or against us. Where the working class is in the calculations I don't know.

@ tenporarilysane

Appreciate the response. Not commenting on 'internal affairs' however means you take no position on the interests needs and struggles of working people who have been struggling for emancipation for almost two hundred years starting with the 1848 revolutions, Paris commune, socialist revolutions, Iranian revolution, etc. It borders apologism and total disregard for the Iranian ruling class's oppression and exploitation of the population. Some bloggers here are against foreigners exploiting Iranians but they seem to be all for Iranian elites doing the same thing

Posted by: Ninel | Jan 6 2018 16:27 utc | 244

e NOT sound. They are hypocritical and lack perspective. Persistently pushing such bullshit is a hallmark of trolls.

Appreciate the response ...
Sadly, there are good people here who are susceptible to troll bait. Perhaps they are unaware of how unresponsive ninel has been to those who have raised valid criticism?

My accusers . . . [attitude is] you’re with us or against us
ninel’s attempt to turn the tables on his critics is laughable. He attacks those who are critical of him with smears like ”. . . cult of anti-US pro Iran propaganda” and depicts them as anti-working class. Yet virtually everyone at MoA is sympathetic to the plight of the working class worldwide. Previous trolls at MoA have also tried to play on that sympathy.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jan 6 2018 18:24 utc | 245

ninel’s bullshit

I’m not concerned about my reputation here.
ninel is trying to portray a fearless attitude but we’ve seen the same from past trolls also.

Commenters with the most credibility at MoA do care about their reputation. This is a community that seeks a truthful understanding of world affairs and generally promotes a just world order.

. . . accusing those with sound arguments of being trolls . . .
ninel’s arguments are NOT sound. They are hypocritical and lack perspective. Persistently pushing such bullshit is a hallmark of trolls.

Appreciate the response ...
Sadly, there are good people here who are susceptible to troll bait. Perhaps they are unaware of how unresponsive ninel has been to those who have raised valid criticism?

My accusers . . . [attitude is] you’re with us or against us
ninel’s attempt to turn the tables on his critics is laughable. He attacks those who are critical of him with smears like ”. . . cult of anti-US pro Iran propaganda” and depicts them as anti-working class. Yet virtually everyone at MoA is sympathetic to the plight of the working class worldwide. Previous trolls at MoA have also tried to play on that sympathy.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jan 6 2018 18:43 utc | 246

@ Jackrabbit

You haven't responded to any of my specific points. All you do is call me names and use inappropriate language in a childish and quite ineffective attempt to discredit me. I think you should try to save face in front of your fellow colleagues here and not engage with me.

I don't see the words 'working class' used much in b's posts or any of the comments. I do understand many of you are sympathetic to the working class, being from that class yourselves, but in the framework many of you are using to make sense of world events, class doesn't seem to occupy a significant place. Rather, you seem to be working at the level of nation-states -- the US and other capitalist powers ('Zionist Anglo Empire' as you call it) = bad and other ruling classes that are targeted for invasion, sanction, etc. = good. It is really black and white, and ignores nuances and contradictions and struggles within countries. There is no substitute for class analysis I'm afraid.

Posted by: ninel | Jan 7 2018 2:37 utc | 247

Ninel: try to save face . . . and not engage with me

More troll behavior: bargaining with critics.

“Let’s agree to disagree” - which is essentially what ninel proposes here - is a means of sidelining critics that have not been deterred by smears.

We’ve had other trolls at MoA that have tried this ploy.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jan 7 2018 8:26 utc | 248

@ Jackrabbit
Better stop that. I could not see one single argument of him that you contradicted with a better one.
Did I miss something?

„More troll behavior: bargaining with critics.“
No. Politeness. See that @ninel is of Iranian descent. Have you ever been in a country where islamistic rules are forced on people? Independent of the positive role of Iran at present in fighting ISIS and others there one has to accept that people in those countries have some other interests besides geopolitics. And in this case the reasons are apparently economic problems and results of the provocations when people say which sums the islamists (they are islamists) consume for themselves.

@ninel: I have once been in Iran, in the year when Khomeini came, in that summer. Since long I have many Iranian friends here. I question that the marxist class analysis is the right tool to understand the Iranian society and its transformations.

Posted by: Hausmeister | Jan 7 2018 10:32 utc | 249

About the list of demerits of IRI that was posted by Ninel, it would help to do two things.

First, the principle of democracy. Governments, democratically elected or not, pay attention to the popular sentiment. Some "backward" phenomena exist in a large part because they are popular. Iran should be compared with Turkey and Pakistan that are neighbors from the west and east, and some areas in USA.

Death penalty is popular in Pakistan, Iran and Texas, so we can detest it, but abolishing it is a long term project. Tellingly, in places like Turkey and Poland the ruling parties publicly consider restoration of death penalty, presumably to gain popularity.

Marriage of teens. My great grandparents were married when they were both 14, this happened in Europe. I even do not know if the state law was involved, it was definitely OK with the priest/caplan of their community, and according to the family lore, they were not unhappy, although for first year of cohabitations they just played together. There is a genuine issue there two, because of weird trend amoung some Muslim clerics advocating very early marriages and so on. Again, one has to ask what is the popular will here. Should outsiders dictate the marriage age in places like Iran, Bolivia or Kentucky?

Alcohol. At least they allow smoking.

Of course, the political system is stifling the public discourse by censorship, control who can run for office etc. and it should be legal to discuss the issues like those above in some other terms than "are they correctly addressed in terms of sharia law"? And a good start would be to allow more approaches to that sharia law. But again, check with popular trends in Pakistan and Turkey.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Jan 7 2018 11:12 utc | 250

@ jackrabbit
There is a gray area between the paid media warriors and the genuine commenters. Newbies weaning themselves from MSM and so forth.
Ninel - an ideologist, a fool that is not looking at the bigger picture perhaps, but not enough to call him a troll.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Jan 7 2018 11:22 utc | 251

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Jan 7, 2018 6:12:27 AM | 250

There is child marriage in the US. The independent link suggests it is because of rural poverty.

I do think ninel has an agenda - coopting left wing, feminist, liberal causes and lifestyle (alcolhol!)- for aggressive system change driven from abroad.

The truth is of course that middle eastern regime change wars are to be blamed for most of human rights violations including child marriage.

Conflict also plays a part. The devastating conditions brought on by the Syrian crisis have led some families to resort to child marriage. In times of uncertainty child marriage often increases as families find themselves in precarious situations as their livelihoods, homes and families become endangered. For many parents, marrying their daughters is a way to cope with economic hardship or a way to protect her from the threat of sexual violence.

Posted by: somebody | Jan 7 2018 12:23 utc | 252

ninel says>

There is no substitute for class analysis I'm afraid

how 'bout class extinction?

what's coming into focus ever more poignantly is that the ruling class only needs about 10% or so of the worker bees out there. resource depletion, ecological collapse, and ever rising unemployment are already and will continue to be our worsening legacy. there will never be a job for everyone who wants one. the struggle for 'workers rights' is a futile struggle. your Marx & Lenin is so much stale boilerplate. the revolutionary epiphany will only come when we all learn to do everything for free.

Posted by: john | Jan 7 2018 14:28 utc | 253

Posted by: john | Jan 7, 2018 9:28:00 AM | 253

Did not notice the working class disappearing. Here in Germany the unskilled work in logistics, warehouses (yes the internet shopping boom, though this Christmas logistics had a logistical problem, as Father Chrismas being able to deliver everything in one night to every individual is a fairy tale), cleaning and care. The skilled work servicing automated machinery and care.

Or do you envision a world where robots service robots in endless loops?

I left out a few industries.

What has changed is that people think the internet means freedom and fell for 24h availability and uninsured, insecure jobs on demand. To get the rights (and the solidarity necessary for that) their parents and grandparents had will take some time.

Posted by: somebody | Jan 7 2018 14:46 utc | 254

@Peter AU 1: Ideologist or troll? IMO when an ideologist engages in troll behavior to drum up support for their cause then they have become a troll. We could call ninel an “annoying propagandist” if you like but ninel’s goals and methods are designed to “troll” for support and converts.

@Hausmeister: Is he Iranian? Have you seen ninel’s passport? Yes he’s knowledgeable about Iran, but his call for support is based on class.

@Piotr: Yes, your points is well taken. Local culture and norms should be accounted for. But I think you may not have read the full thread. ninel’s laundry list of complaints are just a teaser for his call to support the Iranian revolution. He labels those that don’t give that support as pro-IRI / anti-working class.

This is akin to saying that all USA citizens then are pro-Israel / anti-Palestinian. But this ideological troll has no interest in nuance or perspective. For him there is no greater evil than IRI.

In addition, as I pointed out earlier, ninel has criticized Iran’s costly Syrian intervention to combat ISIS. Essentially, he would not support the effort to defeat an enemy that engages in much worse practices. Maybe he thinks of ISIS as a people’s movement?LOL!

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jan 7 2018 14:59 utc | 255

somebody says:

Did not notice the working class disappearing

well, Germans are fiscally disciplined and well organized, and still able to sustain the redundancy that constitutes the mass of the working world.

what's probably the most successful working model of the socialist/communist construct to date is in Kerala. and even there, to maintain full employment it's necessary to operate at a deficit.

come on, man, it's all clearly, it won't go poof tomorrow, but we're well into the final phase.

Posted by: john | Jan 7 2018 15:43 utc | 256

@ Jackrabbit | Jan 7, 2018 9:59:57 AM | 255
No. In my opinion he is one of those „old fashioned“ Iranian leftists who are exiled, may be ideologically fixed to the old Tudeh party, and have a lot of relatives in Iran. They think first about them. Geopolitical considerations come later, second. BTW. Who is going to die in Irak or Syria then? You or his relatives? - I tend to be careful on this issue. Here in Germany the Internet is full with Alt+Right checkers who praise Iran and Putin for their geopolitical role in this moment. But that VPN is forbidden in Russia now by law they neglect. Same with a lot of "specialities" in Iran that no leftist ever can apologize. Or with Erdogan: a bad enemie. In the moment he listens to Putin he is a hero, in a second. Chicken stuff.

Posted by: Hausmeister | Jan 7 2018 15:54 utc | 257

United States unemployment rate is at the same level as 1948

I suspect it is even lower as more women are holding jobs.

Let's not invent doom.

Posted by: somebody | Jan 7 2018 16:34 utc | 258


You, and the rest of us, don’t know anything about him except what he has told us. If he was what you suppose, why wouldn’t he have told us?

What he HAS said is he has been a long time reader of the blog. If that is true, it seems strange that he hasn’t commented before given how articulate he is and how passionate. But he showed up here just when USA-Israel-KSA is hijacking protests in Iran.

One of his first tactics was an attempt to play upon the story of Neda to gain sympathy from MoA. But when he got heavy push-back on that, he readily dismissed Neda as merely one of many.

Then there is his handle. Backwards Lenin emphasizes his supposed socialism over his supposed Iranian roots. Because he’s not here to present his personal story but to appeal for international support.

Lastly, his disingenuous approach has been well thought out. He claimed that he was drawn to make a comment to correct a misperception of b’s but he he was clearly prepared to continue well beyond that to drum up support for a revolution.

And is it not strange that he has no concern for the hijacking of these protests? I think most genuine revolutionaries revolutionaries would be concerned about sort of government replaces the one that is overthrown. Would Iranians be happy with a West-leaning dictatorship with run by MEK thugs?

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jan 7 2018 16:41 utc | 259

257 Tudeh has a problem since 1953.

It is clear that the Tudeh passed its intelligence on the pending coup to the prime-minister on August 15, 1953. The period August 16-19, 1953 was a short and crucial one and needed a quick, focused, and determined reaction by the Tudeh leadership if the situation was to be turned around. Instead, chaos and lack of determination prevailed. While on his own initiative, one Tudeh officer, Lt. Ali Ashraf Shoja'iyan, helped Musaddiq's guards arrest Col. Ne'matollah Nasiri the courier of the royal decree dismissing Musaddiq, the rest of the Military Organization did not take any action. On the seventeenth, the party began to call for abolition of the monarchy and establishment of a democratic republic. Tudeh members were instructed to join demonstrations for the new cause.

This happened simultaneously with CIA operatives in Tihran organizing their paid street agents to demonstrate against the monarchy, for a democratic republic, and beginning to pull down the shah's statues around the city. This fake Tudeh crowd was joined by Tudeh supporters and added to the panic of the nationalist government which did not really intend to create such radical reaction. The government, therefore, ordered the military into the streets resulting into arrest of many Tudeh activists, withdrawal of pro-government supporters, and a hostile military in control of streets. Tudeh leadership does not seem to have been aware of fake Tudeh activities and was not able to react to them.


Posted by: somebody | Jan 7 2018 16:45 utc | 260

Somebody @258

The unemployment numbers are very misleading. A large number of people are not counted. Examples: prisoners and long-term unemployed.

Furthermore, the vast majority of jobs created in the last 10 years have been of low-quality: part-time and/or low-paying. There are stories of people hold 3 jobs or more.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jan 7 2018 16:46 utc | 261

add to 257

I know. Alt-right loves authoritarian. Their brains are wired that way.

To call for war because of dictatorship would be the argument of German Social Democrats for joining WW1 - to topple the tsar.

Posted by: somebody | Jan 7 2018 16:51 utc | 262

add to 260

Tudeh's problem presumably had something to do with the US and Stalin's cold war partitioning of the world.

Similar problem Greek communists had - who put up a fight.

Posted by: somebody | Jan 7 2018 16:57 utc | 263

somebody says:

United States unemployment rate is at the same level as 1948

let's not invent unemployment numbers!

Posted by: john | Jan 7 2018 16:59 utc | 264

261 Same as the 1950's in the US"

As you could've guessed, the prosperity of the Eisenhower years didn't touch all Americans. Even as the nation prospered and the middle class did well, something like 25% of citizens lived in poverty (then defined as an annual income under $3,000 for a family of four).

Much of this poverty was said to be "invisible." It affected Blacks in urban neighborhoods and whites in depressed rural areas like the Appalachian Mountains. Middle-class folks enjoying their new swimming pools in the suburbs could go through their lives without ever seeing the misery in other sectors of American society. Poverty amid plenty was another paradox of the '50s, but most were able to ignore it.

Poverty Rate today is lower in percentage points.

Same as it ever was.

Posted by: john | Jan 7, 2018 11:59:27 AM | 264
I linked to the numbers.

Posted by: somebody | Jan 7 2018 18:26 utc | 265

@ john 253

Read Marx's Capital and then we can have a serious discussion about capitalism.

@ jackrabbit

I don't support the IRI or US or any oppressive state that justifies the system of class exploitation within its own territories, even in conflicts where the former appears to be a victim/target. It is perfectly reasonable and possible for working people, who comprise the vast majority of the population in all countries, to emancipate themselves, through organisation, even when there is a conflict between their ruling class and another. The IRI, like other countries, rallies people around its flag during such conflicts as a life-saving strategy. It will not work for it in the long term. In all countries, working people are increasingly fed up with their leaders and implicitly the system in general.

Posted by: ninel | Jan 7 2018 19:09 utc | 266

| @ 9L| Jan 7, 2018 2:09:41 PM | 266

Your recent appearance has provided a refreshing addition to the commentariat here and an intellectual challenge to the rusts of the status quo that can insidiously overtake one's opinions. I think you are correct about your economic viewpoints, particularly concerning those who add to economic production through their labour, but without a functioning economic understanding on which to build one's narrative, the result becomes the same as the old story of the Tower of Babel. The advent of 'capitalism' has eclipsed all other sources of economic production: land, labour and entrepreneurship. Nowhere will you find a principled definition of capital, only fungible (and feeble) attempts are on offer. Those introduced to economics through 'Econ 101' under the MBA program are so deceived by their indoctrination as to be effectively lobotomised against any further learning. The investment by western education in demonising Karl Marx has eradicated that contribution to economic thought, undoing that result leads only to Sisyphean labour with doubtful accomplishment. You will also find the state of acceptable history to be in disarray to the point of uselessness; no historical fact remains unaltered, degraded or intact from doubts. The past is obliterated to the point now that it is impossible to firmly know where you were or even where you are now. Best of luck in trying to navigate to where ever you wish to go. No better example than that provided by the current economic theology/ideology of neoliberalism with its tricklings down and miraculous markets and all the rest of their trivia, perfectly conceived to obscure such inconvenient things as currency, labour, banks, and a plethora of other inconvenient to mention items needed for conducting any actual discussion of economics. Handy too, since this condition makes it impossible to build an alternative to the TINA economics on offer; a house truly built on ephemeral sand. I don't expect your invitation to read Marx's economic opus to be taken up by most here, a great void of economic understanding is the result, a pity.

I do hope you will continue your sojourn these parts, it would be a valuable contribution that may expand many's horizons; not a bad thing that. Now to return to the silence…

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Jan 7 2018 20:33 utc | 267

ninel says:

Read Marx's Capital and then we can have a serious discussion about capitalism

i'll have to take a raincheck, ninel, as there are only so many hours in a day and i have a burning penchant for a more universal art form.


Information is not knowledge.
Knowledge is not wisdom.
Wisdom is not truth.
Truth is not beauty.
Beauty is not love.
Love is not music.
Music is THE BEST

(Frank Zappa)

Posted by: john | Jan 7 2018 21:18 utc | 268

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