• Iran

    Bravery in Iran

    At Tabriz University in Iran, an awe-inspiring student stood on a stage with an official of the powerful and brutal Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and denounced him for killing and torturing Iranians and for supporting the murderous regime of Bashar al-Assad in Syria. I can only hope he somehow manages to stay safe. And yes, I’ll say it: If he was in danger in Iran and sought refuge in the United States, he would likely be barred from entering under President Trump’s pending travel ban. Because, y’know, all Iranians are equally dangerous.

  • Iran,  Women's Rights

    Boycott of women’s world chess championship in Iran, is defending women’s freedom of choice

    This is a cross-post by Potkin Azarmehr When the US female chess champion, Nazi Paikidze-Barnes, and some of the world’s other top female chess players announced last week, they will boycott the next world chess championships in Iran, because they have been told they are expected to wear the compulsory headscarves in Iran; it was a truly welcome news for Iran’s women who have been fighting against the compulsory hejab forced upon them since shortly after the victory of the 1979 Islamic revolution in Iran. Iranian women have seen very little international support in their long courageous fight against not having the right to wear what they choose. Western feminist activists…

  • Iran,  Labour Party


    Maybe I’ll finally have to read a Harry Potter book now. @thetweetofcolin https://t.co/YDtmY6cPvp — J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) September 2, 2016 (Hat tip: Dave McAvoy) Update: I'll use my influence whatever way I want. This country needs to be freed of fascists on both right and left. https://t.co/vdNCFkAVGI — J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) June 27, 2016

  • Iran,  Latin America

    Argentine prosecutor: Nisman was murdered

    Now that Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner is no longer president of Argentina, and her chosen successor was defeated in last November’s election, we may get closer to the truth about the death of Alberto Nisman, the prosecutor who turned up evidence that Kirchner and others helped cover up Iranian involvement in the 1994 bombing of the AMIA Jewish community center in Buenos Aires, which killed 85 people. Prosecutor Ricardo Sáenz has confirmed that Nisman was murdered in January 2015, the day before he was scheduled to present evidence against Kirchner and other government officials before a parliamentary commission. Sáenz thus rejected the finding of a previous prosecutor in the Nisman…

  • Iran,  Media

    Press TV reporter records sexual harassment by boss, flees Iran

    After releasing recordings of the news editor sexually harassing her over the phone, Sheena Shirani– a reporter for the Iranian-state propaganda channel Press TV– has fled the country. This is not the first time that Hamid Reza Emadi [the news editor] has made news headlines. In March 2013, the European Union blacklisted him and his boss Mohammad Sarafraz, who is head of the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting company (IRIB), for their role in broadcasting the forced confessions of political prisoners. According to the Official Journal of the European Union, they worked “…with the Iranian security services and prosecutors to broadcast forced confessions of detainees, including that of Iranian-Canadian journalist…

  • Iran

    Nude statues covered up in Italy to avoid offending President Rouhani

    The BBC reports: Italian hospitality for the visiting Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has stretched to covering up nude statues. Mr Rouhani and Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi spoke at Rome’s Capitoline Museum after Italian firms signed business deals with Iran. But several nudes there were hidden to avoid offending the Iranian president. Italy also chose not to serve wine at official meals, a gesture France, where Mr Rouhani travels next, has refused to copy. It’s appalling that Italy should choose to go to such lengths to placate the President of a country which punitively enforces its own dress (and other religious) codes.  Western leaders and dignitaries choose (or are obliged)…

  • Iran,  Obama

    Welcome home

    At a moment when American politics is going through one of its periodic bouts of insanity, it’s good to read some of the comments by Amir Hekmati, the former US Marine who was arrested in 2011 on spying charges while visiting his grandmother in Iran and was released on January 16 as part of a prisoner swap accompanying the implementation of the nuclear agreement. Hekmati expressed deep gratitude for the support from loved ones, the news media and elected officials, including President Obama. “Even the Iranian officials, our captors essentially, were amazed,” he said. “They asked us, ‘Why are they working so hard for you?’ And I just said that…