Senate Iran-- now discussing a lessening of sanctions and continued negotiation

Discussion in 'Community' started by KnightWriter, Jun 14, 2009.

  1. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2001
    star 8
    Based on what I've been reading, it seems that President Ahmadinejad basically stole the election of June 12th, despite probably losing the vote by as big a margin as John McCain did to Barack Obama, if not more so.

    If the election has been stolen, what does that mean for Iran, the United States and the Middle East in general? If Ahmadinejad won a real victory, what does it mean?

    From The New Yorker:

    There can be no question that the June 12, 2009 Iranian presidential election was stolen. Dissident employees of the Interior Ministry, which is under the control of President Ahmadinejad and is responsible for the mechanics of the polling and counting of votes, have reportedly issued an open letter saying as much. Government polls (one conducted by the Revolutionary Guards, the other by the state broadcasting company) that were leaked to the campaigns allegedly showed ten- to twenty-point leads for Mousavi a week before the election; earlier polls had them neck and neck, with Mousavi leading by one per cent, and Karroubi just behind.
    Historically, low turnout has always favored conservatives in Iranian elections, while high turnout favors reformers. That?s because Iran?s most reliable voters are those who believe in the system; those who are critical tend to be reluctant to participate. For this reason, in the last three elections, sixty-five per cent of voters have come from traditional, rural villages, which house just thirty-five per cent of the populace. If the current figures are to be believed, urban Iranians who voted for the reformist ex-president Mohammad Khatami in 1997 and 2001 have defected to Ahmadinejad in droves.


    From The Daily Kos:

    Unofficial news - reports leaked results from Interior Ministry:
    Eligible voters: 49,322,412
    Votes cast: 42,026,078
    Spoilt votes: 38,716
    Mir Hossein Mousavi: 19,075,623
    Mehdi Karoubi: 13,387,104
    Mahmoud Ahmadi-nejad (incumbent): 5,698,417
    Mohsen Rezaei (conservative candidate): 3,754,218


    Highly questionable info, but something to think about nonetheless.
  2. Schutzstaffel Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jun 13, 2009
    I have read nothing but criticism for this man.

    Criticism for his ideals, his policies and his leadership in general. If Ahmadinejad was voted in legally, I will eat my foot. He had something to do with the outcome of this vote and the country will suffer for it.

    If this election has been stolen, which I do not doubt, it means that Iran will suffer a further decline in economy, public relations and support from the US which Iran needs a lot of right now.

    You can also expect that if this is indeed stolen that voted for Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karoubi will not go down quietly.
  3. Jedi Gunny Yahtzee Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    May 20, 2008
    star 8
    Things are going to be very dicey there for a while.
  4. Schutzstaffel Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jun 13, 2009
    I would like to share this:

    Protests in Iran

    Iran
  5. Rogue_Follower Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 12, 2003
    star 6
    I've found this blog to have some rather up to date information on the situation, including liveblogs of the unrest. But I'm not sure how reliable, filtered, or biased it is, so take it with a pinch of salt.
  6. Ghost Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 13, 2003
    star 6
    Like an Iranian I heard on the news said, before the elction, even if Ahmadinejad is re-elected, this campaign has been a social awakening for Iran and its youth. And for a country where 2/3 of it is under 30, born after the Islamic Revolution of 1979, Ahmadinejad and even the clerics will really feel the pressure for some reform. I hear the atmosphere has not been this tense since 1979.

    With Iranians having turned out in unprecedented numbers, over 80% turnout, and the media being own by Ahmadinejad, I really doubt he won in a 62% landslide. These hand ballots had barely stopped being cast, when he was "announced" the leader, there is no way they were all counted.

    Oh, this is nice:

    Ahmadinejad: No guarantee on rival's safety


    Iran has cutoff the media:
    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/31357829/ns/world_news-mideastn_africa
  7. Mr44 VIP

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 6
    This shouldn't have been a surprise to anyone, especially since it's the Iranian ruling council that really has all of the power in Iran. Things like elections aren't going to matter as long as the Ayatollah's control the strings.

    Hey, remember Mohammad Khatami? He was Iran's prior "reformist" President who served for 8 years. He was forbidden by the ruling council from running for the same election that Ahmadinejad "won."

    Of course, Khatami would have brought Iran toward a new direction within the international community, and it was Khatami and Bush, when he was President, who initiated the first joint US-Iranian cooperative mission in over 20 years. The Iranian council disallowed Khatami precisely because he was increasing ties with the West at the time.
  8. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2001
    star 8
    That's all well and good, 44, but remember that the same people (neocons) who spent years saying that the Iranian president was just a figurehead completely flipped around during Ahmadinejad's presidency, calling him dangerous and a powerful threat, among other things.

    Which is it?
  9. Mr44 VIP

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 6
    Who said what now?

    You mean, Hillary Clinton, who acting in her official position of US SecState, called Ahmadinejad a threat just 3 months ago?

    HERE

    I'm not sure who you are listing as flipping or whatever, besides your normal course of name calling. If you provide a speech, statement, or quote, then I'll look at it.

    Are you referring to the time Ahmadinejad threatened to "wipe Israel off the map?" Some other incident? I suppose the threat comes into play whenever a potentially hostile nation rigs up a sham election and installs a leader who doesn't reflect the desire of the people.

    Specifically, the President of Iran is responsible for signing treaties and appointing ambassadors and such, so it does matter who is President, even if the Ayatollah/ruling council controls Iran's military leaders and nuclear forces.

    Beyond that, it gets rather old when you just come in, post a variation of "BUSH/NEOCON/CHENEY/ETC IS BAD!!!BOOGEY, BOOGEY!!!" and don't offer much in the way of actual discussion.
  10. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2001
    star 8
    44, one of these days or decades, it's going to dawn on you that Bush really was a terrible president. I won't be around to see it happen, but it will happen just the same.

    Also, just because people who aren't known as neocons have said one thing, it doesn't mean that the neocons themselves weren't going on about how the Iranian president is dangerous just a few years after saying that the position was powerless. If you aren't willing to take my word for what most folks who care know is the case, there's not much I care to do to help you.
  11. Mr44 VIP

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 6
    No, you just have to make a point.

    But what did you want to discuss by simply posting "some neocons flipped around and called Ahmadinejad a threat?"

    What was the context? What was the speech made in response to? How did it fit within existing US/IAEA/UNSC policy, especially since the current administration seems to have the same concerns? (as it should.)

    Ahmadinejad was installed by the Iranian Council in a sham election 4 years ago, so it isn't a surprise that it happened again. The "threat" that Ahmadinejad poses is related to that, which is also what Clinton addressed in the speech that I posted above.

    I don't understand why you post something unsubstantiated and bitter, and then dismiss those who ask what you mean. It's 2009... More and more, your "Bush-anger" is starting to seem really silly.
  12. GrandAdmiralPelleaon Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 28, 2000
    star 6
    Robert Fisk: Iran erupts as voters back 'the Democrator'


  13. SuperWatto Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 19, 2000
    star 5
    Hey everybody, it's the Bush-Obama comedy duo!

    Didn't Bush list Iran as part of the 'axis of evil' when Khatami was president?
  14. Sven_Starcrown Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Mar 10, 2009
    star 4
    Thank you for posting that, great article.
  15. Alpha-Red Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 25, 2004
    star 5
    So I guess what everyone would like to know now is....where do we go from here? Will the protests make a difference in the near term? If not, how bad will a second term Ahmadinejad be? If things go the way of North Korea, how should we respond?
  16. yankee8255 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 31, 2005
    star 6
    Interestingly, the NY Times has an article this morning on how Ahmadinejad has consolidated his power.

    Since then, though, it has been announced that the Supreme Leader has called for an investigation into the election.Is the investigation going to be an any more legitimate than the election itself? Or are they really starting to feel the heat from the protests?
  17. kingthlayer Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 7, 2003
    star 4
    The Obama administration should condemn this sham. I find it terribly hard to believe that Mousavi was blown out in his own home province. Or that his biggest demographic.. the youth vote (1/3rd of the population I might add) went overwhelmingly for Ahmadinejad. And why weren't there enough ballots for the big cities where Mousavi is most popular?
  18. Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 1999
    star 7
    Iranians already know they're not really living in a democracy, so I have to believe all the excitement over the failed voting process has a lot more to do with frustration over Iran's economic situation than anything else. The collapse of oil prices has of course been hard on Iran.
  19. Gonk Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 1998
    star 6
    This is bad news in Iran. I think finally the policies the government began in 1997/98 are finally starting to catch up with them.

    It wasn't until Khatami's election that things began going sour within Iran. Although Bush didn't help things with his Axis of Evil speech during Khatami's tenure, the Supreme Council was already make moves years earlier to block him, beginning with a number of newspapers being forced to close thier doors.

    However there's such a move within the Supreme Council that it has opted to attempt for a sort of "facist-lite" feel. It's been trying to straddle a divide between a hardline stance and in some ways trying to placate the public so as to avoid unrest. The fact that it feels it must do this is important to note: after all Kim Jong-Il suffers no such compulsions in North Korea -- whether this is because of people within the supreme council unwilling to take those extra violent steps or an indication of just how powerful the masses in Iran could be is uncertain.

    Depending on how far the protesters go, this could be very ugly. If they refuse to give in, the country could be forced either to bow to pressure or to crack down.

    Unfortunately this is unlikely to come out in favor of the protesters. If the Supreme Council keeps full reign on the military and no part of the forces makes a group decision to side with the protesters -- as what happened during the Russian 1991 coup -- then all they will have to rely on is the potential unwillingness to act by the leadership. As conflicted as Iran has been, this seems unlikely.

    At the very least, Iran is being forced from it's straddling of the middle. The protests are revealing that the moves of the government are coming at a severe price and as happened with China they will be unable to maintain the facade. And unlike China there's a distinct possibility that cracking down may have long-term consequences: a country with 80% youth is unlikely to stay quiet and a violent resistance movement may develop. They're going to have to decise what they want to do and make the decision firm if they want to get by.

    Of course, all of this is rather silly to being with. From the beginning it was always about those in power too afraid to lose it: which is precisely what actual democracy demands: regular and consistent cycles of appointment and removal from power.
  20. Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 1999
    star 7
    Even now it seems they're trying hard to split the difference between a hardline crackdown and efforts to placate the masses. You're right they may have to commit fully to the crackdown at some point, but they don't seem to have done it yet.
  21. DarthBoba Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 29, 2000
    star 9
    Khamenei orders probe of elections:

    Probe ordered


  22. SuperWatto Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 19, 2000
    star 5
  23. Gonk Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 1998
    star 6
    I would imagine it is in the overall interests of the Russians for Ahmadinajad to prevail. Iran and America at odds probably chiefly benefits them since it stops Iran from being any sort of proxy for the US in terms of international and economic agreements. No matter if Russia is a democracy or not or whatever is thought of it, they would be able to get better deals out of an Iran that's pitted against the US rather than one that's not. Becuase of geographic position and the status of the weaker former Russian republics, a US-friendly Iran could pose problems for them. Enough to the point that they'd quickly regret the weapons and nuclear sales they've made to them (which are short-sighted by Moscow to make in any event).
  24. DarthBoba Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 29, 2000
    star 9
    :confused: What's up, now?
  25. SuperWatto Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 19, 2000
    star 5
    It's a token offer... Khamenei is trying to save face. No way it's going to make a difference. I don't think that whoever's calling it a 'stunning turnaround' has been around very long!

    I'll tell you what: if Mousavi is made president after all, I'll wear 'Senate fool' in my tag for the remainder of the year.