Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Ganji is dying.

Massoumeh Shafieh, the wife of Akbar Ganji, is risking her freedom and probably her life in an effort to save her imprisoned husband from death. Akbar Ganji is on his 54th day of a hunger strike protesting his and other dissident’s brutal captivity. He will continue until he is released or dead. His crime is being a journalist, or rather a journalist that has criticized the regime, which in Iran is seen by the Mullahs as criticizing Islam. Despite being ordered by the regime not to talk to foreign reporters, Ms. Shafieh told the N.Y. Sun

We are appealing to the United Nations, human rights groups, and other nations to pressure our government to release my husband. Our struggle must reach out past the borders of Iran now. Our leaders will not listen to their people, they will only respond to external pressure

She is right to be concerned, the regime has killed many journalist, the most notable being Zahra Kazemi. Ms. Kazemi was a Canadian-Iranian who was arrested for photographing regime thugs beating young Iranians who were demonstrating for freedom. After being beaten and raped she turned up dead in a local military hospital. We will not see a Turquoise Revolution in Iran until the fear such human rights violations instill in Iranians is muted.

Make no mistake, Iran is a powder keg waiting for a spark. From an article by Slater Bakhtavar:

In Iran, pro-democracy students have taken to the streets several times during the past couple of years. A poll conducted this month by student activists at Amir Kabir University the countries second largest university provided a discomfiting message for the reigning Ayatollahs. The University poll chronicled a mere five to ten percent support for the mullahs and eighty-five percent support for a secular democratic government. President Bush has consistently reached out to this nation that Michael Rubin of the Washington Enterprise Institute dubbed the "most pro-American in the entire region, if not the world", and Thomas Friedman of the New York Times called "the ultimate red state. . ."

Because the world is watching Mr. Ganji, hopefully the government won’t let him die and become such a spark. But then the Mullahs have not always shown good judgement.

We all have a stake in Iran. The State Department reports:

Iran remained the most active state sponsor of terrorism in 2004. Its Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and Ministry of Intelligence and Security were involved in the planning and support of terrorist acts and continued to exhort a variety of groups to use terrorism in pursuit of their goals.

Specifically regarding al Qa’ida:

Iran continued to be unwilling to bring to justice senior al-Qa'ida members it detained in 2003. Iran has refused to identify publicly these senior members in its custody on "security grounds." Iran has also resisted numerous calls to transfer custody of its al-Qa'ida detainees to their countries of origin or third countries for interrogation and/or trial. Iranian judiciary officials claimed to have tried and convicted some Iranian supporters of al-Qa'ida during 2004, but refused to provide details. Iran also continued to fail to control the activities of some al-Qa'ida members who fled to Iran following the fall of the Taliban regime in Afghanistan.

Hamas, Hizballah, and others:

During 2004, Iran maintained a high-profile role in encouraging anti-Israeli terrorist activity, both rhetorically and operationally. Supreme Leader Khamenei praised Palestinian terrorist operations, and Iran provided Lebanese Hizballah and Palestinian terrorist groups -- notably HAMAS, the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command -- with funding, safe haven, training, and weapons. Iran provided an unmanned aerial vehicle that Lebanese Hizballah sent into Israeli airspace on November 7, 2004.

And as pertains to the greatest threat facing Fascist Islamists, a successful Democratic Iraq:

Iran pursued a variety of policies in Iraq during 2004, some of which appeared to be inconsistent with Iran's stated objectives regarding stability in Iraq as well as those of the Iraqi Interim Government (IIG) and the Coalition. Senior IIG officials have publicly expressed concern over Iranian interference in Iraq, and there were reports that Iran provided funding, safe transit, and arms to insurgent elements, including Muqtada al-Sadr's forces.

Oh, and don’t forget the Nukes.

What can we as bloggers do to support Ganji and the freedom movement in Iran? Join and support Blog Iran and Regime Change Iran. Go to the Release Ganji web site and scroll down to the activities section. Above all, don’t stay silent. We are the Blogs and are a loud voice in the world. Ask CBS and Dan Rather. As Regime Change Iran states:

Those of us in the blogosphere need to publish the news on Iran in order to help Iranians searching for news know that we support their efforts to replace the existing regime with a real democracy. This is why we ask you to publish our campaign logo on your blog.

Why republish the news? Because the regime is blocking access to most major news sites and the blogosphere is a means to frustrate their efforts. It is also important for the people of Iran to know that people around the world are standing with them in their struggle. This support has proved invaluable to others that successfully overthrew their oppressive regimes in other places around the world, such as Georgia, the Ukraine, Lebanon and elsewhere.

The choosing of assassin and torturer Mahmoud Ahmadinejad by the Mullahs to be the President of Iran shows that they are not going to reform. As Peter Ackerman has said:

When the people realize they have the power to expose the deceit underlying a government prone to repression, it is the beginning of that regime's end.

We can be that power.

Update: 17 March 2006 Ganji is released.


paleologos said...

I think the problem many of us have about supporting the cause of moderates in Iran is that for about 25 years we have been told that they are just about to take power, and that the Iranian people will throw off the Mullahs, etc. At some point, we have to wonder: when?

Medya said...

yeah Ganji is Dying but ! ... but more than 50 iranian kurds already been kiled by iranian regim....and nobody gives a shit !

ganji was among those who had kidnapped Ameican diplomats ! kurds are the only freind of americans in the middle east!