Egyptian Protests Inspire Opposition in Iran
Wall Street Journal / Farnaz Fassihi
30-Jan-2011 (11 comments)

But on Sunday, the main student activist website, Daneshjoo News, issued a statement calling for a big opposition demonstration on the anniversary of the Islamic Republic on Feb. 12th. Bloggers also are calling on opposition leaders to rejoin the fray.

"The democracy movement we started is spreading in the region and today we are witnessing the awakening of the Arabs. It's time for us to once again join hands and prove to the world that dictatorship must end," the Daneshjoo News statement said.
On the streets of Tehran, a new slogan is being sprayed on walls: "Seyed Ali, go be with Ben Ali"—refering to Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and Tunisia's former President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali, who was ousted by protests in that country earlier this month. The Tunisian protests helped inspired the current unrest in Egypt and antigovernment protests in other Arab countries, including Yemen, Algeria and Jordan.

Iranian state media, meanwhile, are portraying Egypt's uprising as a better-late-than-never Islamic revolution, similar to the one that toppled the Shah and paved the way for Iran's current Islamic Republic, more than 30 years ago. State media have also painted the protests as a popular outpouring against Egypt's alliance with the U.S. and longstanding peace with Israel.

Official news agencies prominently ran excerpts of a speech last year by Mr. Khamenei. In it, he mentioned the growing division between Egyp... >>>

recommended by Shifteh Ansari



Nothing will happen on that day...unfortunately

by Onlyiran on


IRI has insinuated itself into every corner of Iranian society

by AMIR1973 on

The universities are under very strict watch, both students and those professors who are not regime cronies. For all intents and purposes, every single university "chancellor" in the IRI is a regime appointee, and we all know there is a significant basij presence on campuses to spy on and inimidate students. The labor leaders are jailed, and there are basijis in every major factory making sure no one comes out against the regime and the Leader. The factory bosses are either regime insiders and/or have to be in "partnership" with a regime insider to get the things they need, e.g. permits, etc  -- therefore they are expected to support or at least acquiese to the regime or else. What civil society does exist is  very severely hounded, imprisoned, and harassed. What relatively more "independent" clerics do exist are either dead or intimidated by the regime's goons. By being the world's leading per capita executioner the authorities are sending a message to the Iranian population that we will not hesitate to label you as "mohareb" or execute whoever we want for drug or pornography charges. The Mubarak regime is a lousy, repressive authoritarian state, but the IRI is far, far more so -- has Mubarak executed almost 20,000 of his own citizens since coming to power in 1981? Not even close, but the IRI has (and that's a rather conservative estimate). The Egyptian youth were able ton organize with relatively greater openness than the Iranian youth are. I'm not saying the IRI is invulnerable (it is), but no "velvet revolution" or "peaceful reform movement" is going to bring meaningful democratization and freedom to Iranian society. Just something to bear in mind.


I agree with Amir. Why

by vildemose on

I agree with Amir. Why announe the date? It's like letting the fox into the hen house. That is profoundly naive of the activist leaders.

Niloufar Parsi

good catch shifteh

by Niloufar Parsi on

this will be a great test of the veracity of our opposing perspectives. 

i am as always looking for signs that my pessimism on support for a regime change in iran is proven wrong.

let's see how it goes on the anniversary on the 12th. mubarak will be gone by then hopefully.


our Queen Pahlavi is the legitimate ruler of Iran


Our Queen Shahbanoo Farah Pahlavi is the legitimate successor to our King Pahlavi. We need to support her with all our might. She is the light for Iran. She will bring us freedom, happiness, prosperity. She has worked selflessly for Iran and Iranians  all her life. She has stayed true to our King, our country, our people. She is real and genuine. She is compassionate. Our people's voices resonate in her heart. She is the queen of Hearts.  We need her. We need this beautiful woman to lead us to freedom and to rebuild Iran. Long Live Shahbanoo Farah Pahlavi.


My two cents

by AMIR1973 on

I am 100% in favor of regime change in Iran and the overthrow of the IRI. However, I think the practice of attempting protests on official IRI "holidays", e.g. Feb 12th, is problematic. The truth is that the regime uses these days to bus its own hangers-on, basijis, pasdars, intelligence and security apparatus and do their "Death to America", "Death to (Fill in the Blank)" routine and heavily promote their participation by having factory bosses, etc "encourage" their employees to show up. By telegraphing almost 2 weeks in advance the day they plan to protest, they are giving the IRI's thugs a big advantage in terms of being prepared for repression. Perhaps a better approach would be to pick random days rather than officially sanctioned IRI propaganda days. Anyway, my two cents.

G. Rahmanian

Regime's Days Are Numbered!

by G. Rahmanian on

Except for IR's goons and peons, you ask anyone you like in Iran and they'll tell you regime's days are numbered. As Iranians start receiving their bills, they will realize what has really happened to them after the subsides were cut. This alone will be a good enough impetus for people to take to the streets and ask for regime change. Chooneh zadan ham nadaareh!!!


"Revolutions are impossible

by vildemose on

"Revolutions are impossible until they become inevitable"--Trotsky

This is not a good year for Khamenie et al. Global Economic and finanancial melt down plus the Grinding poverty and 'exported inflation' (desigend to topple the dictatorships in the ME) will be the main causes of uprisinng in Iran.


Liked the slogan

by divaneh on

Thanks for sharing the good news Shifteh Jaan. I liked the slogan and here offer it with a little alterations.

Mashin Mashti Mamdali

Take this Ali to that Ali

ماشین مشتی ممدلی ، علی رو ببر پیش علی


"seeing the ripple effect!"

by comrade on

I'm not sure if we can call it news yet, good or bad. It's more like mere anticipation. One should remember and always cherish what we achieved many decades ago by ousting the Shah's dictatorships. What replaced that regime has remained the subject of different debates to this date.

Never increase, beyond what is necessary, the number of entities required to explain anything.




by yolanda on

Thank you for the good we are seeing the ripple effect!

I love the slogan:

Seyed Ali, go be with Ben Ali