Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Montazeri Memorial Sparks New Wave of Iran Protests

I've got a couple of U.S. news reports on the latest wave of unrest in Iran. See the Washington Post, "Iran Warns That it Will Deal 'Fiercely' With Protesters," and, "Iran Beats Mourners, Signaling Harder Line":

Iranian security forces clashed with mourners in the city of Isfahan on Wednesday, according to opposition Web sites, signaling a possible hardening by Tehran in its response to protests following the death of a dissident cleric.

Security forces beat back crowds with batons in Isfahan, about 200 miles southeast of Tehran, after mourners gathered at a central mosque for a memorial service for Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri, opposition sites and news agencies reported. Mr. Montazeri, an architect of the Islamic Republic, fell out with the conservative clerical establishment in the late 1980s and had been a critic of the government ever since.

During the six months of protests that followed contested presidential elections in June, he became a spiritual guide for the opposition movement. News of his death over the weekend sent mourners to the holy city of Qom, where he had lived. Protesters turned the memorial into antigovernment demonstrations.
Plus, more video at Enduring America, "Latest Iran Video: The Isfahan and Mashhad Protests (23 December)." And, an opposition blog, "A Brave woman Tears Khamenei’s Picture (Taken to Hotel)."

Plus, at Babylon & Beyond, "
IRAN: Video of Dissident Cleric's Funeral Ceremony."