We continue to live in Interesting Times.
The people haven’t closed ranks behind the regime.
So much for the New York Times theory that, thanks to Trumpian and Saudi bellicosity, the Iranian people have closed ranks behind their rulers. In November, the paper’s Tehran bureau chief, Thomas Erdbrink, devoted an extended feature to making this case, and it proved wildly popular with the pro-nuclear deal crowd in Washington.
“After years of cynicism, sneering or simply tuning out all things political,” wrote Erdbrink, “Iran’s urban middle classes have been swept up in a wave of nationalist fervor.” He went on: “Mr. Trump and the Saudis have helped the government achieve what years of repression could never accomplish: widespread public support for the hard-line view that the United States and Riyadh cannot be trusted.”
Erdbrink’s argument echoed rhetoric from Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif. Responding to October’s announcement of new U.S. sanctions against the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, Zarif tweeted: “Today, Iranians–boys, girls, men, women–are ALL IRGC.”
This week, tens of thousands of Iranians took to the streets to register their anger, not at Donald Trump or the House of Saud, but at the mullahs and their security apparatus. It was economic grievances that initially ignited the protests in the northeastern city of Mashhad. But soon the uprising grew and spread to at least 18 cities nationwide. And the slogans shifted from joblessness and corruption to opposition to the Islamic Republic in toto. These included:
“Death to [Supreme Leader Ali] Khamenei!”
“Death to Hezbollah!”
“Not Gaza, Not Lebanon, Our Life Only for Iran!”
“We Will Die to Get Our Iran Back!”
“Clerics Out of Our Country!”
One would think that the MSM would be all over this. One would be disappointed.
By Ace, Ace of Spades
Oh, they did cover the Iran rallies.
The pro-government Iran rallies, I mean.
Not to be outdone in fake news, the tired gray crone of Gotham chose to muddy the waters.
The New York Times chooses to pretend this is just about “economic woes,” rather than a direct challenge to the clerical tyranny itself…
That does indeed smack of the propaganda once spread by Pravda and Tass.
But wait, there’s more:
By Tyler Durden, ZeroHedge
Overnight Friday a well-known Sunni jihadist group which operates in Iran posted a video to its media accounts purporting to show an attack on an oil pipeline in Iran’s southern Khuzestan province, which has historically been a restive area in which Sunni Arab separatists have been active.
Though Iran has yet to confirm the attack, the terror group Ansar al-Furqan Ahwaz Martyrs Brigade claimed responsibility in an official statement, which noted “This operation was conducted to inflict losses on the economy of the criminal Iranian regime.” Ansar al-Furqan is a relatively new group, having been founded in 2013, and has ties to Syria’s Al-Qaeda-linked Al-Nusra Front (currently called Ha’yat Tahrir al-Sham). It is comprised primarily of Baluchi Salafist militants which are hostile to the Iranian government – the Baluch people, an entho-linguistic group, are spread primarily throughout southern Iran, Afghanistan, and western Pakistan.
Both the video and written statement identify the location of the attack as near near Omidiyeh, a city in Khuzestan Province – an area of the country which has witnessed periodic uprisings and sporadic bombings going back to 1979 and into the mid-2000’s.
The United States Department of State Issued a Statement:
[via Ace of Spades]
Back to ZeroHedge for some actual reporting:
By Tyler Durden, ZeroHedge
The US State Department has issued a formal condemnation of the Iranian government following two days of economic protests centering in a handful of cities, calling the regime “a rogue state whose chief exports are violence, bloodshed, and chaos” while announcing support for protesters.It fits a familiar script which seems to roll out when anyone protests for any reason in a country considered an enemy of the United States (whether over economic grievances or full on calling for government overthrow).
The statement by spokesperson Heather Nauert, released late on Friday, further comes very close to calling for regime change in Iran when it asserts the following:
On June 14, 2017, Secretary Tillerson testified to Congress that he supports “those elements inside of Iran that would lead to a peaceful transition of government. Those elements are there, certainly as we know.” The Secretary today repeats his deep support for the Iranian people.
As I have demonstrated here on Wizbang before, Iran has been waging war upon the United States for over thirty years. I for one hope the mad mullahs not only fall, but are torn apart in the streets.
[UPDATE] U. S. Ambassador to the U. N. Nikki Haley:
In the New Year, our hopes and prayers are with the millions of people who are suffering from oppressive governments in North Korea, Venezuela, Cuba and especially in Iran, where they long-repressed Iranian people are now finding their voice. The Iranian government is being tested by its own citizens. We pray that freedom and human rights will carry the day.
I’m still holding out for a very bad end for the mad mullahs.